SEXING Jacob...what the?


7 Years
Jul 29, 2012
I am starting to have doubts about the gender of Jacob the house quail. (I am going with female at the moment, but i'm not sure.) She was given to me as a supposed 'she' and I never thought anything of it, because even if she wasn't, we would still have six females. Jacob is the only survivor of the Great Quail Massacre, and now she is a 'house quail', there is a lot of attention focused on her. After having her inside for about 8 weeks, the rest of the family wanted to know why she wasn't laying any eggs (we had got quite used to having an 18 egg omelette at the weekend
). I thought it might be something to do with the traumatising experience that had befallen her, and then having new (unfriendly) birds invade her territory.

But maybe not? Jacob is either just a fawn coturnix or a golden japanese...I'm afraid to say i can't tell the difference, and those colours are nutoriously hard to feather sex. I don't want to vent sex if i don't have to, as i am afraid it will spoil our 'friendship' (at least for a while). And her previous owners were convinced she was female (after vent sexing). She hasn't layed any eggs since we brought her inside, and i'm not even sure if she laid any outside. She doesn't crow, and didn't try to mate with any of the other females (i think) but that could be because Quill, the head male, forced 'her' not to.

The only reason i would like to know, is so that when we get some more quail and breed 'her', we know what gender to buy! And also, if she is female, is it ok that she hasn't laid eggs for a while?

All fluffed up

Sorry...this one sucks

I feel a bit stupid after posting two threads about the same quail on the same day, but i couldn't help myself.

any advice would be appreciated,

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Seems like a male; Good thing about coturnix is that you can (normally) easily sex them with their chest feathers.
I'm confused about vent sexing, everything looked the same with both the male and female. :l Eh, but I'm new to this.

I'm pretty sure most coturnix quail go by the:

Rusty orange = Male
Easy to define Spots = Female

She looks like a female to me based on the spotted breast feathers. Males would be solid rust or tan, in Jacob's case. Jacob is a very pretty bird!

For mature quail it's very easy to vent sex. The boys have a bulbous gland on the tail end of their vent. In mature boys, it's very large and if you press it, foam will come out of the vent. Females do not have the gland. Their vents tend to be larger and longer (across the tail direction). Females that were just mated might also have foam from the male so you can't really use foam itself as an indication. It is sort of like invading their privacy to vent sex!

If Jacob hasn't crowed, that's another definite sign. If Jacob makes cricket calls, she would be a girl also.

I wouldn't worry about the eggs yet. Some birds take longer than others to get comfortable. Is she getting 16 hours of light a day? I had a pet quail that laid her egg in the same spot in her cage every day. If I cleaned the cage, she would stop for a couple of days then start laying again.
Thank you muchly.

I think I will stay with female for the moment, (mainly because i think it would take ages for me to stop calling her a girl) but next year, when we get some more quail, i will be able to tell for sure. If
I do ever make sure, i will be sure to notify who won the contest

Also, about eggs, Jacob is on the toy box just under the window, and gets all of the natural daylight, but i'm not sure if WE have 16 hours sunlight, as winter is rearing it's ugly (and freezing) head. does man-made light count? because if so, probably.

Oh and we just found out, Jacob loves Michael Jackson! She was literally dancing to thriller for about half an hour!
Artificial lights count. Just ask my parakeets that go through molts every time I forget to turn off the lights in the bird room!

They don't need much light, some people even string up Christmas lights for their birds.

That's funny about Michael Jackson!

I have one prediction for you though, when you get more birds, Jacob will not be able to be put with them and you'll secretly be happy about it. I think you have one of those special birds there. It's THE bird that makes you keep having other birds and unfortunately, when she's gone, you'll always be searching for another one just like her. Enjoy her!
Yeah, I think you are probably right....Jacob is really cool...

Oops, anyways, sorry September, I'm afraid Chrishel was right. Jacob has now laid three eggs, on three separate days, each time after lapping the room 6 times and then straining hard with her eyes closed and head this bad? afterwards she seems to have hurt her vent as she stands there for about a minute with her vent feathers up, like she is about to lay or poo, panting. for about five minutes she stands with her eyes closed, then goes back to running around again. Is this bad? or could it just be because she hasn't laid for so long?

Oh yeah, and Dolly, the leader of the Cream Crested Legbar sisters killed a sparrowhawk today....WOW....she saved a little greenfinch. Birds unite!

Any advice would be appreciated,

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