Fun Japanese Quail Facts For Kids

Moumita Dutta
May 08, 2023 By Moumita Dutta
Originally Published on Aug 05, 2021
Edited by Monisha Kochhar
Great fun facts about the Japanese quail.

The Japanese quails are almost like common European quails and are also called Coturnix quails. They belong to the Old World quail species which is found in East Asia.

Japanese quails are typically small birds that originated from North America but can also be found across Europe, Australia, Asia, Africa, South America, Russia, East Asia, and other parts of Africa. Their feathers come in many colors such as blue, black, brown, cream, or white but mostly brown.

Their heads are tawny, with small black patches littering the area above the beak.

The Japanese quail size can only reach up to the length of 4.5-7.8 in (11.4-19.8 cm) and weighs from 2.4-4.9 oz (90-100 g). Their wings can extend up to 12.5-13.7 in (32-35 cm) but can only cover short distances by flying.

They live in the ground surrounded by grasses, bushes, and shrubs. Seeds such as miller and cracked corn are their favorite foods.

They can feed on insects like grasshoppers as well. They are quite a delicacy in many parts of the world and have been farmed mostly in China and are kept as commercial or poultry birds because of their flesh and also quail eggs.

Quail eggs are usually laid at an early phase like when they are seven weeks old and are also kept at home as pets.

Quail eggs are considered a fine delicacy and are a staple in luxurious restaurants. To ensure the mental well-being and natural living of the quails, they should be provided with their needs.

Read on for more Japanese quail facts. You may also like our articles on the California quail and evening grosbeak.

Japanese Quail Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a Japanese Quail?

The Japanese quail is a type of bird from the species of quail. This species is reared to be served as a delicacy in many countries.

What class of animal does a Japanese Quail belong to?

The Japanese quail belongs to the class of Aves.

How many Japanese Quails are there in the world?

There are 130 different Quail species all around the world.

Where does a Japanese Quail live?

Japanese quails usually inhabit places like riverbank bushes, and grassy and agricultural fields of rice, oats, and barley. They also like to live in meadows, steppes, and mountain slopes close to any water body. They are from North America but they can be found across Australia, Europe, Asia, South America, Africa, Russia, and Africa.

What is a Japanese Quail's habitat?

A Japanese quail's habitat would include the same area for almost all of their lives, most of them do not migrate. Quails prefer to stay on the ground. They live in woodlands, grassy fields, and open spaces filled with bushes and croplands as well.

They are very small in size so they hide in the grass to avoid predators. Quails can clean their feathers to get rid of pests by covering themselves with dust. In winter, quails live with their flocks.

Who do Japanese Quails live with?

The social structure of Japanese quails may vary. Sometimes they can live in solitary. Sometimes they prefer to live together in family groups. When the chicks mature, the families join flocks consisting of  100 birds or even more; who stay together and protect each other.

How long does a Japanese Quail live?

The lifespan of a Japanese quail is very short. They live about 2-2.5 years or 2-5 years only.

How do they reproduce?

The Japanese quail (Coturnix) population usually takes part in mating in the grassy ground in their nest. They lay about 1-12 eggs after mating and contribute greatly to the egg production industry.

Quail eggs can hatch in less than one month and they are ready to be mating and breed when they are only about two months old.

The breeding season for Japanese quails in Russia usually starts in late April and can continue up to early August. In Japan, nesting occurs late in May and usually ends in August.

What is their conservation status?

The Japanese quail population is quite rare. The dwindling number of their population has put them on the Near Threatened list. It is because of the dwindling that the price of this quail has considerably increased.

Japanese Quail Fun Facts

What do Japanese Quails look like?

The Japanese quail male and female are quite unique-looking birds that are famously reared as a delicacy in many countries.

The female Japanese quails can be distinguished by their light tan-colored feathers that also have black speckling on their upper breast and their throat as well. The male Japanese quails are similar-looking but can be differentiated from the female ones because of their rusty brown-colored breast feathers as well as their throats.

Males can also be recognized because they have a cloacal gland, which is a bulbous structure situated towards the topmost edge of their vent and is also known to secrete a foamy whiten substance.

A Japanese Quail specimen.

How cute are they?

Japanese quails are quite cute with their bulbous and oddly shaped bodies. This bird is quite attractive as well with its scale-like pattered feathers that come with beautiful colors. The warm and buffy orange color in the lower parts of their body makes them look pretty attractive and unique at the same time.

How do they communicate?

Quails usually communicate by emitting high-pitched sounds, cackles, and also grunts which have harmonic beats and are not very noisy. The Japanese quail usually takes part in the act of courtship-feeding when the male holds a piece of worm with his beak, and the female takes the worm to eat.

How big is a Japanese Quail?

A Japanese quail is very short. The length of a quail can only reach 4.5-7.8 in (11.4-19.8 cm). They are 10 times shorter than any big birds, like eagles.

How fast can a Japanese Quail fly?

Japanese quails or Coturnix japonica can fly fast. They can fly very quickly if they sense a threat to their lives. While some of the birds do just stay motionless. However, it is fine to say that they can fly much faster depending on the species.

How much does a Japanese Quail weigh?

The weight of a Japanese quail or the Coturnix japonica can range between 2.4-4.9 oz (90-100 g).

What are the male and female names of the species?

The gender of the Japanese quails or Coturnix japonica is not determined by any specific name assigned to each gender. They are recognized easily because they happen to be sexually dimorphic, meaning that the males are quite different than the females.

The female Japanese quails' breast feathers are littered with dark spots and the male quail's breast feathers have a patch of dark reddish-brown color.

What would you call a baby Japanese Quail?

The baby Japanese quails are called Japanese quail chicks after they hatch. Unlike chicken babies, the chicks are already born in a well-developed stage after hatching and can leave their nest to go after their parents immediately after hatching.

What do they eat?

Like chickens, the Japanese quail is also an omnivore, although 95% of their diet is made of plant matter. They usually eat grass seeds, berries, leaves, roots, worms, and some insects such as grasshoppers. They eat grass seeds like white millet and panicum.

They feed on insects' larvae as well. An adult Japanese quail eats between 0.49-0.6 oz (14-18 g) of food per day. The baby chicks like to eat cracked sunflower seeds, cracked millet, live crickets, and also dried mealworms.

Are they dangerous?

No, they are not dangerous. They are peaceful and not aggressive at all. They are easily scared and when they are threatened, they run and escape. They think of humans as their threats. So basically they are not dangerous at all.

Would they make a good pet?

Japanese quails would make a great pet as long as you are equipped with knowledge about how to handle them with ease. Raising them is fairly easy. Japanese quails are tough birds that thrive in cool climates.

They are known to mature when they turn six weeks of age and can survive for up to two to three years. They look lovely and aren't noisy. So as a pet, they are quite good.

But Coturnix quail are small birds. So the quail can and will fly away and they do not come back when allowed to escape.

Quails are strong birds, which can be easily looked after. Japanese quail eggs are quite in demand in the egg production industry. They lay nearly 300 eggs in a year.

The common quail egg is known to have high protein and fewer calories than chicken eggs hence are valuable in the poultry and egg production market. So they are beneficial as well. And the sound of the male quail is similar to a wild songbird; they are not a nuisance to peace.

Did you know...

The Japanese common quail has a long history and it dates back to the 11th century. As opposed to being important birds used for egg production for the Japanese quail eggs, the Japanese quails or quail Coturnix during this period were considered songbirds and were kept in households as pets as well.

Due to the small size of this bird, the quail eggs are quite vulnerable making them susceptible to being hunted by predators like squirrels, foxes, coyotes, raccoons, skunks, hawks, snakes, dogs, owls,  cats, rats, and weasels as well.

When they are face to face with their predators and feel threatened, their behavior becomes erratic and they run away or fly away.

Some just remain motionless.

When it comes to defending themselves, they resort to defense mechanisms like heel spurs. Their bony structures can also be used against predators.

Are Japanese Quails noisy?

The Japanese quails are not noisy at all. Male quails have rough behavior, can crow, and make certain noises that are similar to that of a whistle.

However, the female quails are known to be quieter and more calm compared to the males. The Japanese quails have a mild temperament and usually call by making a chirruping sound similar to that of a cricket. They only make loud sounds when they are unhappy about something or being separated from their companions.

What should you feed a Japanese Quail?

Japanese quail species are small birds that are easy as well as inexpensive to keep. The newly hatched chicks have to consume the proper amount of protein.

Quails need more protein than other bords in the poultry industry. They feed on seeds such as millet and are known to like cracked corn too. After six weeks of age, the chick needs to be fed a regular diet after hatching.

Make sure that they consume 0.9% calcium,  19% protein, 0.4% methionine, and 0.5% phosphorus in the daily diet. Along with food this species of quail also needs an adequate amount of clean and fresh water according to their demand.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! Learn more about some other birds from our secretary bird facts, and belted kingfisher interesting facts.

You can even occupy yourself at home by coloring in one of our free printable Japanese Quail coloring pages.

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Written by Moumita Dutta

Bachelor of Arts specializing in Journalism and Mass Communication, Postgraduate Diploma in Sports Management

Moumita Dutta picture

Moumita DuttaBachelor of Arts specializing in Journalism and Mass Communication, Postgraduate Diploma in Sports Management

A content writer and editor with a passion for sports, Moumita has honed her skills in producing compelling match reports and stories about sporting heroes. She holds a degree in Journalism and Mass Communication from the Indian Institute of Social Welfare and Business Management, Calcutta University, alongside a postgraduate diploma in Sports Management.

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