Top 15 Types Of Quail Birds (with Photos)

Quail birds, with their small size and intricate plumage, have fascinated bird enthusiasts for centuries. From the elusive Common Quail to the colorful Gambel's Quail, these avian species showcase a remarkable diversity that is worth exploring.

Each type of quail bird possesses unique characteristics and behaviors, making them captivating subjects of study. In this discussion, we will delve into the fascinating world of quail birds, shedding light on their distinct features and habitats.

Prepare to be amazed as we uncover the secrets of these enigmatic creatures, revealing the wonders that lie within each species.

Common Quail

small migratory bird species

The Common Quail (Coturnix coturnix) is the most widespread quail species, found across Europe, Asia, and Africa. It is a small bird, measuring around 17-18 centimeters in length and weighing approximately 100-150 grams. The adult male has a brown back with distinct black streaks, while the female has a more camouflaged appearance with a mottled brown plumage.

One of the most fascinating aspects of the Common Quail is its migratory behavior during the breeding season. These birds undertake long-distance journeys, covering thousands of kilometers, from their wintering grounds in Africa to their breeding grounds in Europe and Asia. The Common Quail's migration is triggered by changes in day length and food availability, and they navigate using celestial cues and landmarks along their route.

Japanese Quail

small domesticated japanese birds

The Japanese Quail (Coturnix japonica) is a small bird species known for its distinctive plumage and unique breeding habits. These quails are native to East Asia and have become popular worldwide for their adaptability and high egg production.

When it comes to breeding, there are a few tips to consider. Firstly, providing a suitable environment with adequate space and proper temperature control is essential. Japanese quails also require a well-balanced diet to maintain optimal health and reproductive performance. Their diet should consist of high-quality commercial quail feed, supplemented with fresh greens, insects, and grit.

It is crucial to ensure a constant supply of fresh water as well. By following these breeding tips and providing a nutritious diet, breeders can maximize the productivity and overall well-being of their Japanese Quail population.

California Quail

state bird of california

Native to the western United States, the California Quail (Callipepla californica) is a small bird species known for its vibrant plumage and interesting behaviors. This quail species is commonly found in California, Oregon, Washington, and parts of Nevada.

The California Quail prefers a variety of habitats, including brushy areas, open woodlands, and grasslands. They are often seen foraging on the ground for seeds, insects, and other plant materials. These birds are known for their distinctive calls, which consist of a series of loud, rhythmic notes.

In terms of conservation status, the California Quail is not currently listed as a threatened species. However, habitat loss and fragmentation pose significant threats to their populations. Efforts are being made to conserve their habitats and promote sustainable land management practices to ensure the long-term survival of this iconic bird species.

Gambel's Quail

distinctive quail species with a unique call

Gambel's Quail (Callipepla gambelii) is a species of bird native to the southwestern United States, known for its distinctive appearance and fascinating behaviors. These quails can be found in arid and semi-arid regions, including desert grasslands, shrublands, and brushy areas with abundant cover. They prefer habitats with dense vegetation that provides shelter and protection from predators.

In terms of behavior, Gambel's Quail are highly social birds that typically live in coveys, which are groups of about 10 to 40 individuals. They communicate through a variety of vocalizations, including distinctive calls that are often heard during the breeding season.

When it comes to their diet, Gambel's Quail are primarily herbivores. They feed on a variety of seeds, fruits, leaves, and flowers, which they find by scratching the ground with their feet. They may also eat insects and other small invertebrates, especially during the breeding season when they require additional protein for egg production.

Bobwhite Quail

small game bird species

Bobwhite Quail (Colinus virginianus) is a species of bird that is widely distributed throughout North America, known for its distinct call and unique breeding behaviors. These ground-dwelling birds prefer open grasslands, agricultural fields, and brushy edges as their natural habitat. Bobwhite Quail are commonly found in the eastern and central regions of the United States, as well as parts of Mexico and the Caribbean. They are well-adapted to living in areas with dense vegetation, as it provides cover and protection from predators.

When it comes to breeding, Bobwhite Quail have an interesting mating system. They form pair bonds during the breeding season, which typically occurs from April to August. The male performs a courtship display, involving puffing up his feathers, raising his crest, and calling out to attract a mate. The female then selects the male based on the quality of his call and display.

Once a pair is formed, they build a ground nest in grassy or weedy areas, lined with vegetation and feathers. The female lays around 12-15 eggs, which she incubates for about 23-24 days. After hatching, both parents participate in raising the young, providing them with food and protection until they are independent.

Mountain Quail

elusive bird of mountains

The next species of quail that will be discussed is the Mountain Quail (Oreortyx pictus), a fascinating bird with distinct characteristics and habitat preferences. The Mountain Quail is primarily found in the mountainous regions of western North America, from southern British Columbia to northern Baja California. This species prefers dense, brushy habitats such as coniferous forests, chaparral, and shrubby slopes. They are known for their ability to navigate steep, rugged terrain and are often found at elevations of up to 10,000 feet.

In terms of diet, the Mountain Quail is primarily herbivorous, feeding on a variety of plant materials. Their diet consists of seeds, leaves, berries, and insects during the breeding season. They are known to forage on the ground, scratching and pecking at the soil to uncover food. The availability of food sources greatly influences their habitat preferences, as they seek areas with abundant vegetation and suitable foraging opportunities.

Harlequin Quail

small colorful ground dwelling bird

The Harlequin Quail, scientific name Coturnix delegorguei, is a small species of bird known for its vibrant plumage and unique behavioral patterns. These quails are native to the grasslands and savannas of sub-Saharan Africa. They are typically found in areas with dense vegetation, such as tall grasses and shrubs, which provide them with suitable cover and nesting sites.

When it comes to breeding habits, Harlequin quails are known to be monogamous, forming long-term pair bonds during the breeding season. Males perform elaborate courtship displays to attract females, including puffing up their feathers, bobbing their heads, and emitting low cooing sounds. After mating, females will lay their eggs in a shallow nest on the ground, usually hidden within vegetation.

In terms of habitat requirements, Harlequin quails prefer areas with a mix of open grasslands and scattered shrubs. They rely on these habitats for foraging, as they mainly feed on seeds, insects, and small invertebrates. The availability of suitable vegetation cover is crucial for their survival, as it provides protection from predators and allows for successful nesting and rearing of young.

Chinese Painted Quail

colorful chinese painted quail

Chinese Painted Quail, also known as Excalfactoria chinensis, are a small species of bird characterized by their intricate and vibrant plumage patterns. These quails are native to Asia and are popular among bird enthusiasts for their beauty and unique appearance. When it comes to breeding habits, Chinese Painted Quail are known for their monogamous relationships and their ability to lay multiple clutches of eggs throughout the year. They prefer to build their nests on the ground, often in concealed areas for protection. In terms of diet preferences, they primarily feed on a mixture of seeds, grains, insects, and vegetation. To engage the audience further, here is a table showcasing the preferred diet of Chinese Painted Quail:

Diet Preferences
Seeds
Grains
Insects
Vegetation
Fruits

Coturnix Quail

small ground dwelling bird

Native to Europe, Africa, and Asia, the Coturnix Quail, scientifically known as Coturnix coturnix, is a small bird species commonly bred for its meat and eggs. With its compact size and fast growth rate, coturnix quail breeding has become popular worldwide.

These quails are known for their high egg production, making them a preferred choice for commercial egg farming. Coturnix quail egg production can reach up to 300 eggs per year, with each egg weighing around 10-12 grams. The eggs are small but packed with nutrients, making them an excellent addition to a balanced diet.

Coturnix quail breeding requires proper care and management to ensure optimal health and productivity. Providing a suitable environment, balanced nutrition, and appropriate breeding practices are essential for successful coturnix quail breeding and egg production.

Blue Quail

endangered bird in texas

Blue quail, scientifically known as Excalfactoria chinensis, is a small bird species that is renowned for its distinctive blue-gray plumage and is widely studied for its behavioral patterns and ecological significance. Blue quails are native to East Asia, including China, Korea, and Japan. They can also be found in parts of Southeast Asia, such as Thailand and Vietnam.

These birds primarily inhabit grasslands, shrublands, and agricultural fields, where they can find ample cover and food sources. Blue quails are ground-dwelling birds and are rarely seen flying. They have a secretive nature and are known for their ability to camouflage themselves in their surroundings.

In terms of behavior, blue quails are known to be social birds, often forming small flocks. They communicate through soft calls and engage in courtship displays during the breeding season. Additionally, they are known for their ability to run swiftly and take quick flight when threatened.

King Quail

tiny regal bird species

The next bird species to be discussed is the King quail, a small ground-dwelling bird with notable characteristics and behaviors. The King quail, also known as the Chinese painted quail, is native to Asia and Australia. It is a popular bird among aviculture enthusiasts due to its striking colors and unique patterns. The King quail is known for its vibrant plumage, with males displaying a combination of black, white, and chestnut colors, while females have a more subdued appearance.

In terms of care, King quails require a suitable habitat with plenty of cover, such as dense vegetation or shrubbery, as they are ground-dwelling birds that prefer to hide in dense foliage. They also need a well-balanced diet consisting of seeds, insects, and greens.

As for breeding, King quails are relatively easy to breed in captivity. They reach sexual maturity at around 6-8 weeks old and can breed throughout the year. Proper nesting materials, such as grass or straw, should be provided, and the female will lay around 5-6 eggs, which she will incubate for approximately 18-21 days.

With proper care and attention, the King quail can be a fascinating addition to any aviculture collection.

Button Quail

small colorful ground dwelling birds

Button Quail, also known as Chinese blue-breasted quail or Excalfactoria chinensis, are small ground-dwelling birds native to East Asia. These quails are highly sought after for their unique appearance and charming personality.

Button quail breeding requires specific conditions to ensure successful reproduction. Breeding pairs should be housed in spacious aviaries with ample hiding places and suitable nesting materials. The female will lay several eggs which will then be incubated for approximately 16 days until they hatch.

As for button quail care, it is essential to provide them with a balanced diet that includes a mix of seeds, insects, and vegetables. Their enclosure should be regularly cleaned, and they should have access to fresh water at all times.

These fascinating birds make wonderful additions to aviaries or as pets for experienced bird enthusiasts.

Valley Quail

california s state bird

Valley Quail, scientifically known as Callipepla californica, are medium-sized ground-dwelling birds that inhabit the valleys and foothills of western North America. These quails are renowned for their distinctive appearance and unique behaviors.

Valley Quail have adapted to a variety of habitats, including woodlands, grasslands, and chaparrals. They are commonly found in areas with dense vegetation and ample cover, allowing them to forage for food and seek protection from predators. Their habitat preference also includes areas with reliable water sources nearby.

When it comes to nesting, Valley Quail are known for their communal habits. They construct their nests on the ground, usually hidden beneath dense vegetation or shrubs. The female quails lay their eggs in the nests, which are incubated by both the male and female members of the group. This cooperative breeding behavior ensures the survival and well-being of their offspring.

Mearns Quail

small ground dwelling bird

Mearns Quail, scientifically known as Cyrtonyx montezumae, are small ground-dwelling birds native to the southwestern United States and parts of Mexico. These quails are primarily found in Arizona, New Mexico, and parts of Texas.

Mearns Quail inhabit a variety of habitats, including grasslands, shrublands, and oak woodlands. They prefer areas with dense vegetation and ample cover, such as thickets and brushy slopes.

Mearns Quail are known for their distinctive behavior of running rather than flying when threatened. They are also known for their elaborate courtship displays, which involve males puffing up their feathers and making soft calls to attract females.

Conservation efforts for Mearns Quail include preserving their natural habitats, managing grazing practices, and controlling predators. These conservation measures aim to ensure the survival of this unique and charming species.

Scaled Quail

small desert dwelling quail

The Scaled Quail, scientifically known as Callipepla squamata, is a ground-dwelling bird species native to the arid regions of the southwestern United States and northern Mexico. These quails are characterized by their distinctive scaled plumage, with each feather having a pattern resembling scales. The body of the Scaled Quail is compact and robust, with a length of around 10-12 inches and a weight of approximately 6-8 ounces.

When it comes to quail breeding techniques, the Scaled Quail has specific requirements. They prefer open grasslands, shrublands, and deserts with sparse vegetation and sandy soils. These birds are monogamous and form lifelong pair bonds. The breeding season typically starts in late spring or early summer when males perform elaborate courtship displays to attract females.

Scaled Quails construct shallow nests on the ground, usually hidden under grasses or shrubs. The female lays a clutch of 10-12 eggs, which she incubates for about 23-25 days. After hatching, the chicks are precocial, meaning they are able to leave the nest and forage for themselves shortly after birth.

About the author

I'm Gulshan, a passionate pet enthusiast. Dive into my world where I share tips, stories, and snapshots of my animal adventures. Here, pets are more than just animals; they're heartbeats that enrich our lives. Join our journey!