chinese quail?

Discussion in 'Quail' started by Chef Chicken Jimmy, Nov 25, 2008.

  1. Chef Chicken Jimmy

    Chef Chicken Jimmy Hatching

    Sep 14, 2008
    Hello all! I have been presented with the opportunity of a pair of chinese quail? I am not sure the breed, she described them as dark purpleish black with a white teardrop shape on the cheeks. I am wondering if anyone knows the breed and can give me some tips on keeping them. I am doing pretty well with my buff orpingtons and easter eggers, but quail are sooooo tiny! what do they eat? how do I care for these little guys? I have a structure for them, it's a little house my dad built for a cat that didn't stick around. It's heated with a hinged roof for cleaning out and egg collecting. I am pretty sure it will need to be a similar, but smaller, set up of what I have for my chickens. Nesting boxes, roosts and a litte room to run around. Suggestions anyone? I have a little time before they are ready so I can get it all set up. Thanks!
  2. monarc23

    monarc23 Coturnix Obsessed

    Jul 18, 2008
    Indiana, Pennsylvania
    Quote:Sounds like wild colored chinese painted<---that's their real name, they're also known as Button Quail, King Quail, Pygmy Quail etc.

    They eat nonmedicated game bird feed, and you should try to suppliment them with small mealworms or other small insects (for higher protien) when you can (i try to once a week feed mine a few mealworms when in stock at the stores). You can order small ones from

    If you can't do that, ground up cat food kibble and feed them that in thier game bird crumbles once a week (dont feed it to them everyday too much fat).

    They need an enclosure with either very short ceilings or ceilings that are soft because a scared button quail will "boink" which means jump up and fly striaght put and they can kill themselves hitting their heads too hard.

    You can keep a trio in a 10 gallon fish tank with aspen, pine or carefresh bedding to namea few bedding types allowed (no cedar).

    Either keep 1 male to 1 -2 females or keep in large collonies in large enclosures and monitor any feather picking or fighting (theycan kill eachother esp rival males but hens will fight too).

    Hens are dull in color compaired to the males

    please visit and scroll down to where it says "button quails" click on it and you'll find a wealth of info and pictures on the different color varieties.

    They come in almost every color you can think of and new mutiations are always popping up.

    i have wild colored, silver, and cinnamon

    hens lay an egg a day once mature at 6 weeks old or older. eggs incubate for 16 days to hatching.

    All i can think to tell ya right now [​IMG]

    best kept indoors....but keeping them outdoors isnt out of the question if you're in a mild temparet area or if you winterize them or keep them in heated shelters. They do not need heat in the home.

    they are not pets you can expect to handle a lot, most are very scared of this...though some are lucky enough to tame a chick that stays friendly to adulthood. I have one such hen. She's my buddy...however it's not always the norm. They are look at pets, like canaries or finches.

    This is my wild pied hen checking up on BYC with me: [​IMG]

    If you put them in a cage with bars, watch because they can squeeze out of very small places and most cats and dogs find them amusing play toys if you know what i mean. So be sure they are in secure pens.
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2008
  3. shelleyd2008

    shelleyd2008 the bird is the word

    Sep 14, 2008
    Adair Co., KY
    Heres a link to another site that a fellow BYCer gave me. It seems like it would be very helpful as well.
    Last edited: Nov 30, 2008

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