Backyard Quail: An Ideal Poultry Bird for Small-Scale Farmers



Raising quail for meat and eggs in your backyard can easily become a fascinating hobby. Quail are friendly, inexpensive and tender, and their eggs are in many places considered a delicacy. It is also very convenient to have them in small backyards as quails take up very little space, and only a couple of them could provide fresh eggs and meat all year round.

Unlike chickens, which can take as long as six months to begin laying, quails will lay, at the earliest, at six weeks of age. Some farmers can even sell their quail eggs, and prices for quail eggs can bring in between $ 6 to $ 10 per dozen.

The quail is a bird from the pheasant family, although they look quite different. They originally come from North America; though today they can be found in Europe, Asia, Africa, Australia and South America. There are 32 species of quail, with each variety having slightly different characteristics, in terms of size, color, and type of habitat.

During the 11th Century in Japan, quails were kept as ornamental song birds. Quails can be domesticated and kept as a poultry birds that produce high quality eggs. Quail live in forest areas covered with shrubs. Destruction of their habitat and uncontrolled hunting negatively affect the number of quail in the wild. Because of these factors, some quail species are listed as endangered.

How to Care for Quail Chicks

Quail chicks are very small. So, it is advised to keep the quail chicks together with the mother quail in a brooder with soft bedding and plenty of food and water for the first five weeks after hatching. A brooder is a small space to raise your quail chicks, it should be a clean, warm, enclosed area. Provide them with a heating lamp while they grow to warm them, and feed them special, protein-rich quail food. It is best to give them some toys so that they are busy as they grow.

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