Got my first Quail ever at a swap and I have some questions.

Discussion in 'Quail' started by TheJadeChicken, Oct 20, 2012.

  1. TheJadeChicken

    TheJadeChicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    I got a little Button Quail from a Poultry Swap. He is my first Quail ever! I didn't like quails at first. But he is sticking cute! His facial markings are a bright white, not the off white, so I am assuming he is male. He still has some of his baby down, but he has 90% of his adult feathers. He is so beautiful. And he is so curious. I didn't think they would such little explorers and look around so much.

    My Questions:

    What is a good food to feed him?

    He was raised with the D'Uccle chick, now a Mille Fleur rooster. The guy said they were hatched and grew up together. Should I separate them? I would hate if the little guy got depressed.

    How long do they usually live?

    I have seen a lot of posts with sand boxes. What type of sand is good for them?

    And is the normal chicken feeder and waterer fine for him at this age? Any ideas for a waterer that would work better? I read about Soda Bottle Waterers, but not sure were to start with that.

    Any help is greatly appreciated! [​IMG]

    P.S. I will post pictures ASAP.

    Last edited: Oct 21, 2012
  2. SeptemberQuail

    SeptemberQuail Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 10, 2012
    You can feed button quail a variety if things, they're kinda like chickens so food scraps work well too.
    Okay so for their overall casual meals you can give them:

    • Gamebird crumble (at least over 20% protein), make sure it's non-medicated.
    • Seed mix (such as canary or budgie, make sure the seeds are small)
    • Vegetables (e.g. lettuce, broccoli, tiny sprouts, etc.)
    • Fruits (e.g. tomatoes, bananas, pears, etc.) Don't give them avacado, (apparently) it's poisonous.
    • Small insects + Small worms (such as mealworms, pill bugs, etc.) [Limit their amount of mealworms to 6 a day]
    • Clovers (my quail absolutely adore eating clovers)

    Now, you'll also need grit, but not too much; It provides calcium (to make eggs) and helps with their digestive system.
    For grit you can give:

    • Shell grit (inexpensive at a petstore or supermarket)
    • Crumbled eggshell (boiled or microwaved to clear off bacteria)

    In your situation, it really depends; Are you going to get a female for your male quail? Because if you just have one male quail alone, he'll continuously call for a female for a mate. It will get annoying, so I suggest to either buy a female and pair them up (you'll also get free eggs daily which are delicious!) or let him live together with his buddy the Mille Fleur rooster. Just make sure they have enough space between the two and that they're eating the right foods.

    If you're going to keep your quail outdoors, you can just use plain old soil - that's what I use for my quail, it's really fun watching them dust bathe and seeing their feathers go 'fluff'. But if you don't want to dig up all that soil, then you can buy some of that sand that they use in a kids sand pit, I've seen it in Toys R Us for $10 for 10kg. It's nice and dry, another good thing for dust bathing in.

    How old is your button quail? If he's fully feathered and matured then a chicken feeder should be fine, though I'm a bit worried about the waterer though, just check - if the water is 'deeper' then his size (if that makes sense) then I suggest giving him his own personal waterer by making your own, like you have noted, soda bottle waterers. I've never made one before but I found a tutorial which I didn't read through though:

    Button quail only grow up to the size of your palm, and when they hatch, they're the size of bumble bee's! ^-^
    But if you want more information about button quail, then I suggest heading to this website:
    I learnt a lot about quail from there. :)
  3. TheJadeChicken

    TheJadeChicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    Thank you! I just noticed I put the wrong quail! -smacks head on desk-
  4. TheJadeChicken

    TheJadeChicken Chillin' With My Peeps


    Well, I separated them. Going to see how they do separated. [​IMG]
  5. oktx

    oktx Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 2, 2012
    FYI - play sand is available near the concrete and lumber area at Lowes or Home Depot for less than $3 for 40 pounds. Much cheaper than Toys R Us.
  6. TheJadeChicken

    TheJadeChicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    I have some play sand. I use it hermit crabs mixed with Eco Earth. Use to use in for my reptiles, but I use newspaper now. I just give it to the chickens mostly, now though. Bought several bags, when they had it on sale for 1.00.

    Just gave him a pan full of play sand. Waiting to see what he does. :D
  7. TheJadeChicken

    TheJadeChicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    Well, he is dusting the sand for the first time. It is flying everywhere! He has done it about 3 to 4 times today, bathing in the sand. xD
  8. SeptemberQuail

    SeptemberQuail Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 10, 2012
    Haha, in Australia almost everything is double the price or more expensive than in other countries. ^^"


    Heheh, they always make a huge mess, but it's fun to watch, eh? :3
  9. TheJadeChicken

    TheJadeChicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    It is. But I have to watch far far away. He is very shy! And I love his call for a mate. Tempted to buy 1 or 2 females.
  10. Marty1876

    Marty1876 Hi Everyone!

    Quail are very social. Your sure its male? You hear him crow (not like a chicken)?

    I feed my quail game bird food. I use regualr waterers once they are too big to drown in them. ( I add marble for young quail to prevent drowning)

    Sand, as you've worked it, is for them to "scratch" and "groom" - see also spread sand and do a happy flying dance.

    Your quail may appreciate another quail or two, but bob white can be quite brutal to new quail, and should be acclimated slowly, imo.

    Enjoy the new quail! Be sure, if its cold where you live, to block off all wind in winter, they can survive normal cold (not alaska) as long as they don't have to suffer the wind. I put mine in the barn hanging cages from rafters in winter.

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