Fun Quail Facts For Kids

Moumita Dutta
Jan 17, 2023 By Moumita Dutta
Originally Published on Aug 05, 2021
Edited by Monisha Kochhar
Fun Quail Facts For Kids

Quail is a name used to describe a wide range of birds who all belong to different genera. Quails are divided into the old world quail and the new world quail.

The former belongs to the family Phasianidae (same as pheasant, turkey, and chicken) and the latter belongs to Odontophoridae. The old world quails have 95 species, whereas the new world quails have about 32 species. The several species of quails enlisted under these two families make this type of bird one of the most diverse in the world.

Quails live in a variety of countries throughout the world. Hence, their habitat is also distinctive. The genera of quails included in the new world quails are Callipepla, Cyrtonix, Dactylortyx, Philortyx, Colinus, Odontophorus, Oreotyx, and Rhynchortyx.

Under the old world, the genera are Corturnix, Excalfactoria, Anurophasis, Perdicula, and Ophrysia. Coturnix coturnix is the common quail.

This bird is also known as Bible, European, Nile, or Pharoah quail. This type is mostly seen in Asia, Africa, and Europe. In the United States, in North America, the California quail (Callipepla californica) is especially notable.

Their plume is made up of six feathers, which lean forward. The plume is a shade of black in the males and brown in the female birds.

This species in California is deemed as the state bird. In recent times, the California quail bird has also been introduced in places like Hawaii, Chile, Australia, Argentina, and Norfolk Island. The genus Collinus constitutes the bobwhite quail.

These are usually found in Northern and Southern America. The four types of bobwhite quails are northern bobwhite quail, crested bobwhite quail, spot-bellied bobwhite quail, and black-throated bobwhite quail.

Quail species are also mass-produced in farms and poultries, as quail eggs and meat are considered to be a delicacy. Numbers show that in 2007 alone, the United States produced nearly 40 million quails. They are also used as game for hunting.

To learn more about the various quail species, continue reading the interesting and fun facts! If you like the content, check out birds of paradise and barn owl facts.

Quail Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a Quail?

A quail is a kind of bird belonging to either the family Phasianidae or Odontophoridae. Several kinds of quail species exist in the wild, as well as in farms and poultries. These birds are usually medium-sized, but their appearance covers a wide range, depending on their genus and species.

What class of animal does a Quail belong to?

Quail belongs to the Aves. They are part of the order Galliformes. This order has 290 species and exists in every continent in the world except Antarctica.

How many Quails are there in the world?

The exact number of quails present in the world is not known. However, they mostly show a steady population and are distributed over ten species.

Among that, several domestic kinds of quails are also present in several farms and poultries. Since quails are used for their meat and eggs as well, they are bred in high numbers. Keeping the quails in the wild aside, the United States produced 40 million quails itself, in the year 2007.

Where does a Quail live?

Quail birds are generally found in forests and woodlands. They are mostly seen in the edges of such regions. They are also seen in parks and near residential areas. In captivity, quails live in farms and poultries. People have started keeping them as pets as well, so they can live in houses, too.

What is a Quail's habitat?

In the wild, a quail's habitat varies depending on its species and distribution. There is some overlapping in their choice of habitat.

Quails mostly stay on the ground and hence, prefer areas where there is tall grass or low shrubs. For instance, the common quail (Coturnix coturnix) likes to stay hidden in crops. A quail's nest can mostly be found hidden among shrubs and bushes.

Who do Quails live with?

Quails are usually solitary birds. They can be seen alone or in a pair. During the mating season, quails birds gather in a group of about 100.

This is known as a convoy. Bobwhite quails can be seen in convoys with 11-12 other birds of the same species, to get protection against predators. Quails can also live with humans and other poultry birds.

How long does a Quail live?

Quails usually have a lifespan of three to five years. However, some quails do have a shorter life expectancy. They also have danger from predators.

How do they reproduce?

Quails have different mating rituals depending on their species. For example, the California quail uses a different kind of vocalization during the mating season.

The males make a 'squill' sound, which often interrupts the 'Chicago' sound made by the females. This is a form of antiphonal call, where two birds participate in performing a perfect duet with their vocalizations.

Most females of various species lay 12 eggs in shrubby areas, where they build their nest, as they are ground-dwellers. Quail eggs are small and usually have spots on the outer shell. In some cases, both the males and females look after the eggs.

After approximately 23 days, the eggs hatch, and the young ones come out. Young quails take nearly three to four weeks to be fully independent.

What is their conservation status?

Most species that fall under the two families of quail are listed as Least Concern in IUCN. However, some species do have a decreasing trend in population. These include Japanese quail, spotted-wood quail, rock-bush quail, among many others.

The Japanese Quail has been listed as Near Threatened due to its decrease in numbers. Some species like the New Zealand quail became extinct in the year 1875.

However, since quails have so many species, and are also bred in captivity, their population is not of great concern. For instance, the California quail population is observed to be increasing. However, quails do face threats from habitat loss and predators.

Quail Fun Facts

What do Quails look like?

Different kinds of quails have different appearances based on their species. However, all quails are medium-sized and brown, blue, black, or white in color.

They are also known for the special plume they have on their head. They generally appear very plump and short-necked, with small wings.

They also have a short tail and their beak is serrated. In the California quail, which is the state bird of California in the United States, the males can be seen with a cap that is dark brown, while their belly region is light brown. Females have a gray-brown appearance.

In the Japanese quail (Coturnix japonica), the head appears tawny and there are several black patches present right above the beak. While the feathers in the male breast area appear uniform in color, the female Coturnix japonica has dark spots.

Several other species of quails have different kinds of feathers and distinct plumes and markings. The males are usually more brightly colored to attract females for mating.

How cute are they?

Quails appear very cute and attractive. They have a unique plume on their heads. The different species display different colors of feathers as well. The various species of quails all look enticing and lovely.

How do they communicate?

Quails have a wide range of vocalizations and sounds that they use to communicate with each other. These calls range from high-pitched sounds to cackles. However, they are mostly known for making sounds that are very close to words.

For example, their 'Chicago' call is very well-known. Bobwhites were named after the call they make, which sounds like their name. They use these vocalizations and calls to communicate with each other during mating season or when predators are nearby.

How big is a Quail?

Quails are generally between 4.5-7.8 in or 11-20 cm in length. These birds are much smaller than other poultry bird species.

How fast can a Quail fly?

Quails can attain a speed of about 40 mph or 1.6 kph.

How much does a Quail weigh?

The quail's body weight is between 2.4-4.9 oz or  70-140 g.

What are their male and female names of the species?

A male quail is known as a cock or roo, while a female quail is known as a hen.

What would you call a baby Quail?

A baby quail is known as a chick.

What do they eat?

Quails are omnivorous in nature. They tend to feed on various kinds of berries, seeds, and also insects, and worms. They also eat roots and leaves from time to time.

Are they dangerous?

Quails are not considered to be dangerous. Sometimes, they can get a bit aggressive during the breeding season.

Would they make a good pet?

Quails do make good pets. These birds are low-maintenance and do not have a lot of requirements. The king quail (Excalfactoria chinensis) is very commonly sold in the pet trade and mistakenly referred to as the button quail.

Did you know...

The common quail (Coturnix coturnix) makes a very unique call. The males in this species sing a song that sounds like 'wet-my-lips'. This can usually be heard early in the morning. Since these birds live hidden away, this vocalization is often the only way to locate them.

Even though the common quail is primarily a gamebird, they are known to migrate over long distances. This is why they have wings that are very long and measure up to 35 cm.

The quails belonging to the new world family do not show migratory tendencies. They also lack leg spurs, which are present in the old world birds. However, their bills are stronger.

During the breeding season, male Japanese quails can be seen with reddish-brown throat feathers. The quails in this species show both monogamous and polygamous interactions.

Do Quails fly?

Quails can fly, but they prefer not to. They are mostly seen walking on the ground and their flying capabilities are not that good. However, when under threat, they can take a short flight. This short flight is known as flushing.

What are Quails known for?

Quails are mainly known for their meat and eggs. This is considered to be a delicacy in many parts of the world. California quail is a very popular choice for meat. Other famous varieties are king quail, bobwhite quail, mountain quail, and Gambel quail.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! Learn more about some other birds including secretary bird, or great green macaw.

You can even occupy yourself at home by drawing one on our 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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