Quail is a cute, little, and irresistible bird. These days Quail farming has become a fun addition to your backyard flock as their nutritious value, and colorful feathers create a unique companionship. When it comes to the nutritional needs of quail, they need a high-protein diet to thrive.
Quail is the bird very much in trend these days because of its tasty and nutritious eggs and meat. Quail farming is just as profitable as chicken, duck, and turkey farming. Its eggs are more nutritious than any other poultry bird, and quail farming contributes a lot to meet the demands for food and nutrition.
However, Quails are picky eaters!
Despite quails fragile reputation and appearance, it is a quite hardy bird that can be easily fed. There is not so much fussing about Quail’s diet, but feeding those correct things or a balanced diet often depends on two main factors:
- Your purpose of raising them
Can Quail eat pellets?
Yes, Quail can eat pellets!
Pellet diet is explicitly formulated for quails’ needs contain seeds, grains, proteins, and vegetables with added vitamins and minerals. Quail-pellet, particularly designed for quails, contains an exact quantity of proteins, vitamins, and other nutrients essential for well-being and growth.
If you find pellets quite bigger, grind these up a bit, but never make a powder of it.
What Quails normally eat?
Quails love to eat a variety of food items, including insects, seeds, and fruits. Some of their favorite meals are:
- Celery leaves
- Duck weeds
- Prickly pear
- Dragon fruit
Let’s make it clear here that different birds have different nutritional requirements. Raising Quail as a game bird or for meat and egg is definitely not the same thing. You should feed them differently. Quails for meat and eggs need a faster growth rate, while Quail for hunting or dog training require more protein in their diet.
Quail diet according to their raising purpose:
You must have to nourish quails according to their purpose. You can divide the quail diet according to their purpose of keeping. Quail feed has four different types according to their purpose of rising:
- Starter: It is a high protein diet
- Developer: This diet is formulated for quails intended for meat and eggs
- Layer: Feed is particular for sporting flight birds
- Finisher: This is a game feed, and it is used for quails you keep as a pet
How to Feed Quails?
- Feed chicks a starter diet for up to 6-8 weeks. Starter feed has plenty of protein essentially required by chicks. Starter feed also contains vitamins and other nutrients to grow these chicks into fully-grown quails.
- After 6 to 8 weeks, it’s time to serve a good quality developer feed to quails specially designed for gaming birds and have at least 20% or more protein.
- After weeks start transitioning quails from starter to developer feed if you want to keep quails for breeding or laying eggs.
- If you are keeping quails for their meat, skip the developer diet and transition those to finisher feed before hitting 10 weeks of age.
NOTE: Quail can also be fed upon ‘’Medicated feed’’ to avoid any parasitic infection such as coccidiosis.
Layer-pellets diet for quails:
Layer-pellet is the diet having enough calcium for quails, and you can feed them with a layer-pallet diet after they start laying eggs. Calcium present in the layer-pallet diet is required for strong and healthy eggs. Layer-pellet is quite big for quails, so make sure to grind pellet a bit before serving quails.
This pellet is commonly known as “Commercial Game Bird Feed for Quails,” which is explicitly created for Quail, grouse, and partridges. The quail pellet diet is a quality feed that is beneficial to keep them productive. The Pellet diet prevents Quail from various types of health problems. This pellet diet is composed of the following ingredients:
- De-oiled rice bran
- Groundnut cake
- Mineral mixture
- Shell grit
- Soya meal
- Sunflower cake
What feed texture is perfect for Quail?
Quail belongs to the Granivores family (grain-eaters), and their diet is mainly consisting of seeds and grains. Layer-pellet diet for quails comes in mainly three different feed textures:
- Pellets hold their shape nicely. They are compact cylinders that are easy to store and serve
- Mash is a complete feed that is finely ground and mixed. It can be fed dry or moistened, and it can be messy with crests or muffs
- Crumble is loose textured and coarse with a soft consistency that is why it is easy to eat
Pellet is a texture that is a bit too big to digest, and quails cannot get proper nutrients from a pellet texture diet. Although mash is a proper feed that is easy and economical to serve, mash quickly sours, and its leftover must be cleared. Otherwise, it causes hygiene issues, and it sticks to the head feathers, and other birds may attack Quail.
Therefore, crumble is the perfect texture for quail birds that are small and easy to digest.
NOTE: Fresh and clean water is essential for the good health and survival of Quail. Dirty and stagnant water can cause severe health issues.
Can Quail eat chick starter?
Chick starter is the pellet mainly designed for chicken. It contains the proper amount of protein required for chicken, but you can serve it to the Quail. The protein requirement of quails is far more than chicken and other poultry birds. You can feed quail chicks with chick starter till their 6 weeks of age.
Giving chick starters to Quail regularly can badly impact your Quail’s growth. Chick starter is the feed not formulated with the Quail’s nutritional needs, so you cannot depend on chick starter at all.
After 6 weeks, you can start feeding Quail their regular quail feed. Layer quail diet contains protein, calcium, phosphorous, and methionine in particular quantities.
Pellet is a diet particularly formulated for Quail, and it contains an accurate amount of protein required for the growth of Quail. Its soft texture makes it easy to digest for Quail, and it is better to grind it little to reduce its size. Always remember to feed quails according to their age and the purpose of keeping them.