This has probably been debated before, but I couldn't find a thread....

Discussion in 'Quail' started by underground chickenman, Jun 4, 2013.

  1. Chicken

    2 vote(s)
  2. Quail

    4 vote(s)
  3. No difference.

    0 vote(s)
  1. For those who raise, or have raised, both quail and chickens, which do you find to be easier? For purposes of this poll, let's assume we mean primarily for eggs.

    From what I have seen written, the consensus seems to be that quail are easier, but I bet to differ. I have raised both for a sufficient period of time to form my own opinion and I think quail are much messier and too little bang for the buck.

    I suppose it depends on how many of each you keep and in what kind of conditions. In my case, I raise quail on wire over litter and I keep chickens in a spacious coop and run using the deep litter method. Because the chickens scratch their droppings into to the litter and ground, their area tends to stay much cleaner and odor and fly free. Quail just drop their poop, so you have to do the work for them, and if you have enough to give you plenty of eggs to eat, and some occasional meat, they poop a lot. Miss a day or two of turning it under or hauling it off and you are in deep doo-doo...literally.

    Obviously, if you are limited on space, or are worried about noise, and you really want to raise fowl, it would be hard to beat quail, but in my opinion, they come with a price and that price is more work, more smell and more flies.

    Anyway, sorry for the long post, but what say you? Chickens or quail? I cast my vote for chickens.

  2. SavageChick

    SavageChick Chirping

    Apr 3, 2013
    Savage, MN
    My vote is for chicken on this one. Raised them when I was younger, but currently unable due to city ordinance that does not allow for raising chickens here. Started up again with button quail, and more recently acquired some Coturnix quail.

    Pros for chicken:
    • Don't require special game-bird food that is often either unavailable or difficult to find in less rural areas.
    • Can free-range, helping to keep insects under control on your property - quail in above-ground pens aren't nearly as effective for this.
    • Chicks are stronger and more vigorous immediately after hatching.
    • Endless recipes available for fixing chicken - you can fix different ways to vary meals. With quail, it's harder to find different recipes to keep you from feeling like you're eating the same bird every time.
    • Can raise together in a flock (usually) without the need to separate into pairs.
    • Eggs are larger, birds are larger - requiring fewer to make a complete meal.
    • Don't require above-ground cages or sprawling flight pens.
    • Easier to sell chickens locally, whereas quail is more of a hunter's delicacy here.
    • Easier to tame if raising one as a pet - not as jumpy and nervous.
    • Greater variety of chicken breeds available, depending on your purpose and your available space.

    Cons for chicken:
    • City ordinance restrictions
    • Need space for free-ranging or to keep in coops with runs.
    • If you end up with a young rooster in your hatch, you'll have a bird most people don't want - especially your neighbors.
  3. James the Bald

    James the Bald Songster

    Jan 6, 2013
    I'm assuming to be eligible to vote, you should have raised both quail and chicken. Like others, I can't raise chickens (legally) due to local ordinances.

    Just out of curiosity, have you posted this poll on the chicken forum?
  4. Sycamore27

    Sycamore27 Chirping

    Apr 12, 2013
    Durham, NC
    I would consider it a pretty close toss up, your milage will vary with your needs.
    Depending where you are, how much space you have, and how much production you need to achieve your preference would change I think. So many cities and towns are introducing permits to allow laying hens now, while others still prohibit chickens but don't have anything on the books to prohibit the "exotic" animals they classify quail to be.

    For the specific wording you chose easier, and considering them just for egg production I think I would have to defer to chickens.
    My reasoning for this would be that so far with my quail they stop laying and I'm left like the owner of a young puppy that is just figuring out how to ask for things, but not yet how to give me me an idea of what he's asking for. I tinker with their food, calcium, water, light, hides, etc. one thing at a time until I come back and find a bunch of eggs to tell me I fixed things. Then a few days later they decide something else needs changing and won't lay til I figure out what it is. [​IMG]
    I haven't had chicken since I was a kid, but we got grown laying hens who had been free range that someone was giving away, put them in a tractor and they laid an egg every day until they were elderly. Moving the tractor around, switching feed, neighborhood dogs trying to attack the tractor, nothing ever stopped them from laying. Feed, and moreover good quality organic feed, was not hard to come by- though we were in a rural area so that's not saying so much.
    We chose quail for our current situation because we want meat as well as eggs and the speed with which quail develop is a plus for that. We also needed quieter birds especially having the roos for breeding, and 10 hens and 2 roos in two large rabbit cages giving us about two large chicken eggs worth of egg production a day fits our space constraints perfectly and is acceptable for our egg use. I do feel like we use a lot less feed for the amount of eggs we get compared to the chickens I kept.

    Once we have room to do so, I will probably keep the quail and focus them for meat production and get ducks for eggs simply because I prefer them to chicken eggs.
  5. TwoCrows

    TwoCrows Bird is the word

    Mar 21, 2011
    New Mexico, USA
    My Coop
    I think that it is about an even toss up between keeping quail and chickens.

    Quail babies seem to be more fragile at hatch than chickens. Chicken babies are much smarter than quail babies.

    However as far as fragility as adults, I have to go with Quail. Quail seem to be much heathier as adults than adult chickens.

    As for weather tolerant, quail can take the worst of the cold far better than chickens. My quail can deal with sub zero temps much better than my chickens.

    As for eggs, I am going with chickens on this one. Not that one lays better than the other. But maybe because I don't eat the quail eggs and the chicken eggs I do, I think the chickens do better on the egg end of it.

    As for clean up after both species, quail are far easier to clean up after than chickens. MY GOD the poop in the chicken run rival the size of a large dog's poop!! LOL My quail poop out very dry stuff. Very easy to deal with.

    So, even steven here.
  6. I have not posted this in the chicken forum because I assumed that more people on the quail forum than on the chicken forum will have raised both, but that's just a hunch. I have no basis for thinking that.

  7. goagain

    goagain In the Brooder

    Dec 25, 2012
    I vote quail. I raise both and love both especially the beauty of chicken roos. But, production wise the quail way out perform chickens. I have to feed a chicken six months before eggs start to show, quail six weeks on average. By the time my chicks start, the quail will have laid four months. That's 120 eggs, if 3 quail eggs equals one chick egg, that's 40 eggs before my chicks even begin. Both will lay reliably for a year, then replacement time for the quail is ten weeks on the quail and seven months on the chicken. I can keep 50 quail in the same basic space as two chickens. The clean up is done by few chickens, I just let them into the quail house a couple hours a day the clean, sort, eat any maggots and mulch the litter for the yard later. Meat or eggs, space and time are the fulcrum tilt towards the quail. Just my opinion.

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