Quail are wonderful for producing eggs, while the egg is Very nutritious, and high in vitamins, the birds are a nice productive hobby. They are a quiet bird compared to a chicken, and since you are interested in them for eating eggs and not hatching, then the noisier Male is not necessary.
If you live in a neighborhood, it is “Best” to find out what your Zoning regulations are. They vary by City or Neighborhood and it is better to know before spending a lot of hard earned cash, setting up pens or cages only to find out you are not allowed to have them.
Once you have a Go Ahead from your governing board, then find a shady area of your yard, If you only have a 1/2 day of shade, afternoon shade is better than morning shade. If you have an area furthest from a neighbor it would be better. They still make a gentle noise. Close to water is good.
Take into consideration how close you want them to your back door. Maybe a moveable pen (chicken tractor) is better suited to your needs, that way you won’t kill your grass or aggravate your neighbors. How ever you contain them, be sure that dogs, cats, racoons, etc can not get into the pen or cage.
Nothing more heart breaking than coming out and finding all of your Hens dead.
You will want an auto watering system unless you can provide them with clean, fresh water Each day. They can get sick from dirty water… And having to tote it even a short distance can turn into a chore. So time is better spent setting up a cheap auto waterer leaving you more time later to enjoy them.
Now as to pens:
There is no right or wrong way to keep them as long as their basic needs are covered, i.e.:
1 fresh water
2. good food
3. dry shelter when it rains, shade in the summer and protection when its cold.
They can be kept in cages off the ground, protected from dogs getting underneath the cage.
Or, kept in a cute chicken house Or, a walk in Aviary.
Once you decide on how many hens you want figure 50 square inches of floor space per hen Minimum! Double or triple that is even better for the bird’s well being.
Once you kind of have an idea on the type of cage you want, then The next best bet is to figure how many eggs you want a day.
3 quail (Q) eggs are roughly equal to a large chicken(C) egg.
Each quail hen lays an average of 5 Eggs per week. So, if you use 2 C. Eggs a day or 14 C. eggs a week, figure; (14 C Eggs x 3 Q. Eggs=) 42 Q. eggs a week then : 42 ÷ 5 Eggs per Week laid per Quail Hen = 9 Quail hens should provide you with your eggs.
With all that said, There are several types of quail with the most popular for producing meat and eggs called a Coturnix aka a Japanese Quail. The Coturnix come in several strains (or different ones that have been breed for unique feather colors). They all lay the same tannish colored egg with brown markings.
The three most common:
- The Texas A&M. is White with a few brown flecks on it.
- The Jumbo Brown. A brown bird with a little light tan mottling on it. Very similar to the Northern Bob White in markings.
- Silvers (SSC) A beautiful mix of grays and Silvers.
We raise all three, They are Docile, becoming very friendly and are easy to take care of. Their eggs are about the same size and look and taste the same.
We can raise up (from our own eggs) chicks to laying age, (6 weeks old). And, we do hatch out year around. You can pre order with a small deposit, we set the eggs, and let you know the approximate date they will be ready for you to pick up.
If you want live birds to start with you will need to be within driving range as we do not ship live birds.
But we do ship eggs. The eggs are sent out by Priority mail so you usually have them in 2 to 3 days after they are sent on their way.
You can order hatching eggs to be shipped to you on our SHOP page.
Call or text me at 352 584 2066 if you wish to discuss this further.