Types of Quail for Your Homestead

Inside: When considering quail species to raise think about size, egg production, and temperament. What types of quail should you have?

The quail species you want to raise and their egg production, size, and temperament are all crucial factors in choosing between them. Species that can be kept in coveys are best for large-scale productions. Some species do well in pairs, an excellent response to a planted aviary. What types of quail should you have?

person holding quail with Types of Quail for Your Homestead text overlay

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Types of Quail for Your Homestead

Quail farming is popular with urban farms, in avian collections, and for game preserves. They are used for hunting and provide a good alternative meat source. Various quail species can be used to clean up spilled seed in a large aviary and patrol for pests. 

Quail eggs can be speckled or solid white, and allow diversified farm operations.

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There are too many different species of quail to include, but I wanted to start with some of the most popular for homesteading.

Coturnix Quail

Coturnix quail are easy to raise. They are used as duel propose birds: meat birds and egg laying. Some also choose to have them as training and hunting birds.

Their eggs take 17 to 18 days to hatch. They are full-grown at six weeks old and laying eggs. This means a fast turnaround on your investment.

They can lay 300 eggs a year, which puts some chickens and ducks to shame!

Varieties include: British Range, Tuxedo, English White, Manchurian Golden, Cinnamon, Texas A&M, and Pharoah D1. Pharoah D1 is the largest and best egg producer.

coturnix quail in leaves

California Quail

When people picture a quail, the California Quail probably comes to mind. The beautiful topknot is really a cluster of six overlapping feathers. These are the quail that everyone pictures when you mention quail. That topknot is well known.

The California Quail spends most of its time on the ground searching for food. They tolerate people and can be found easily in city parks, suburban gardens, and agricultural areas.

California quail are a great addition to an aviary with finches, softbills, or small parrots.

quail with Types of Quail for Your Homestead text overlay

Bobwhite Quail

Northern Bobwhite Quail are the most popular quail breed used for hunting and training bird dogs and they’re great to eat.

Northern Bobwhites can be divided into 22 subspecies. The females look similar in each subspecies, the males vary. Under good conditions, Bobwhites can lay year-round.

The variety of Georgia Giant are larger than wild Bobwhites, weighing almost a pound at maturity. They produce more than 100 white eggs annually.

person holding a coturnix quail

More You May Want to Know

The largest quail breed is the Mountain Quail. The bird's average length is 10–11 in, with a wingspan of 14–16 in. They have relatively short, rounded wings and long, featherless legs. The Coturnix quail is a small compact bird at about 6–7 in in length with a wingspan of 12–14 in.

There are over 130 species of quail!

The smallest quail is the button quail! Button quail are used as pets! They're a bit too small for anything else but are prized for their suitability as house pets. If you think Coturnix quail are small when they hatch, you should see these little guys. A lot of parrot bird owners like to keep button quail in the bottom of their cages to help off set the “waste” of bird feed because button quail will take care it.

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    Frequently Asked Questions

    What is the most common type of quail? Bobwhite is the most common type of quail. BUT most people think of California quail with the topknot when you mention quail.

    Which quails are best for eggs? Coturnix Quail are an excellent option for both meat and egg production. They are quick to mature, require minimal space, and are great for beginners.

    Want More?

    Hatching Coturnix Quail

    How To on Raising Healthy Quail

    How and What to Feed Coturnix Quail

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