New Quail Hatchlings

We’ve got new quail hatchlings!  If you check my Twitter page, I’ll be posting one photo of them a day, so you can watch them grow with me.  It’s really amazing watching them get larger from day to day.

For instance, here is one of our 3-week-old quails next to one of our day-old quails.

Well...sort of side by side.  This is as close as we could get them.

Well...sort of side by side. This is as close as we could get them.

We moved the three-week olds out to the quail hutch on Thursday.

Each of those water bottles is 32oz.  They drink a lot of water, and we want to be able to leave for a weekend without worry.

Each of those water bottles is 32oz. They drink a lot of water, and we want to be able to leave for a weekend without worry.

Eating food, yawning, running around.  Feed them weeds - they love 'em!

Eating food, yawning, running around. Feed them weeds - they love 'em!

Again, check out my Twitter page for daily updates on the new quail babies!

8 thoughts on “New Quail Hatchlings

  1. What do you feed the day old birds? We have some that have been abandoned, I have no idea what to feed them.

    • Hi Jami! You can feed them gamebird starter. You should be able to find it at your local feed store. Look for something with 30% protein. If the protein levels are lower, you can supplement with ground-up cat food (I also use the leftover grinds from our soymilk maker).

      You’ll probably have to grind it up for the first week or so, until they get big enough. Let me know if you have any more questions or if there’s anything else I can help you with! Good luck!

  2. I received 100 Quail chicks, they arrived energetic and alert. In the past four days I have lost half. I am feeding them Grow & Stat from the feed store, Quik Chix and Immuno Charge. All my equipment is new this isn’t going well what am I doing wrong. They are in 3 brooders, temp at 90 F.

    • Hi Deborah. I’m so sorry I didn’t get to this earlier – I just returned from my honeymoon. How are your chicks doing now? How was their behavior before they passed? Was their food crumbled up small enough for them to eat? Were they aware of where their water was (you have to show them sometimes by dipping their beaks in it)? I’m not familiar with the type of food you used. Did it have high enough protein levels? What was the behavior of the surviving chicks like? You might want to also try posting to the quail forums of Backyard Chickens with more details. I hope you have not lost them all.

  3. Hi, I recently started breeding bobtail quails. I had one hatch and died shortly after being transfered from the hatcher to the brooder. The breeding book i have and am following does not mention if they need humidity in the brooder. And if you have any recommendation or ideal temperature and humidity level for the brooder you might be able to suggest. Also during the hatching period, there was a lot of piping comming from the eggs but shortly afterwards, they stoped and they die in the egg. The temperature and humidity was always within ranges recommended.

    If you have any advice to help me, i would apreciate it. Please feel free to email me anytime.

    Thank you again,

    • Hi Yves, I’m sorry to hear about your chicks. I don’t have any experience with bobtail quails, but as far as I know, they do not need any humidity in the brooder. I’ve never heard mention of that before. I do know that bobtails tend to be more fragile than the coturnix. You might want to ask on the quail subforum over at messageboards (

      As for the pipping and dying – in my experience, sometimes this just happens. A quail chick gets unlucky and either has a thicker membrane than its hatchmates, or it is just too weak to make it out. One thing I was advised of was to not open the incubator at all during hatching, because a rush of unhumidified air can dry out the membranes.

      Good luck with your future hatches, and sorry to hear about this one!

  4. Hi, we are sort of new to raising quail and were told by someone they need water as soon as they hatch. Is this true? We have had some hatch in the fall that we waited until we moved them to the brooder box to give water and feed after they were completely dried. They seem to have done fine. That was white pharaohs. Now we also have jumbo bobwhites and brown pharaohs. Is there a difference?

    • Hi Stephanie, the pharoahs do not need water as soon as they hatch. I have always waited until they are moved to the brooder to give them water and feed. Hatchings tend to be a bit staggered, and it’s a bad idea to open the incubator while other chicks are still hatching. Quail eggs tend to have thick membranes, and opening the incubator will cause an immediate drop in humidity. This dries out the membranes and makes it harder for the chick to get out. I don’t have any experience raising bobwhites, but I have heard that bobwhites are a bit more fragile, and you’d want to be extra sure to protect them from drafts. Never heard anything about them needing water right after hatch. If you think about how that’d have to work in the wild, the mother hen would have to nest close to water, and then lead a bunch of wet, newly-hatched chickies out for a drink!

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