Many people ask me this when I tell them about our backyard birds. More people have chickens; wouldn’t that be easier? Aren’t their eggs really small? Do they poop a lot? Why Quail?
They’re cute and cuddly, ’tis true, but Japanese Coturnix Quail have been bred to be tiny powerhouses of productivity. They mature and begin laying eggs at just six weeks, and can graduate to “finishing school” in the oven shortly thereafter. Chickens, on the other hand, don’t generally pop out eggs until six MONTHS of age. While quail and their eggs are small, they pack a nutritional punch. Gram for gram, quail eggs provide more nutrients like potassium, iron, and calcium, and although the birds themselves are small, they are meaty.
Raising quail in the backyard for meat and eggs is also a solid first step toward self-sufficiency and establishing a productive homestead. Relying on grocery stores for poultry that has been raised in squalid conditions and injected with God knows what kind of deleterious chemicals and hormones is not beneficial for the body or the mind. I have followed a carnivore diet for years now (more posts on that coming soon!) and want to be mindful of the animals I am sourcing and consuming.
Enough with the sales pitch! If the logic isn’t enough to convince you, just pick up a quail hatchling and hold it. The overwhelming cuteness will penetrate the hardest of hearts and – even if it pees in your hand – you’ll find yourself wanting to bring a few home.
I want to especially thank Jack Spirko at The Survival Podcast for inspiring me to raise quail. After years of listening to Jack, I finally jumped in and I’m so glad I did. He is on a mission to help people live their best life, “if times get tough or even if they don’t.” For his thorough podcast on all things quail, click here.