Guide on how to start quail farm. The lager specie of quail is the ones farmed. Despite the description ‘large’ they are actually small birds or mid-sized. In the United States of America over 40 million birds are produced for consumption.
The birds are raised for their delicious meat and eggs. The farmer is able to make profit in a relatively short period. The investor needs training, business plan and marketing.
Facts about Quail
Quail eggs weigh 10 to 15 grams and lay eggs within 7 weeks. The incubator time for quail eggs is 15 to 18 days and they can lay 300 eggs a year. The adult bird weighs 200grams and the eggs are multi-coloured.
Benefits of Quail Farming
The benefits of are low start-up funding, low maintenance. The business requires small space, low feed consumption quick sales. The birds reach sexual maturity in 7 weeks and lay an egg daily. The eggs and meat have high nutritional value and the labor requirement is low.
• low start-up funding
• low maintenance
• they require small space
• low feed consumption
• quick sales
• reach sexual maturity in 7 weeks
• lay an egg daily
• have nutritious meat
• low labor requirements
Types of Quail
There are different species of quail according to classifications. We have the Gambel quail, California, elegant and scaled quail.
Others are the ocellated, singing. Banded, black-eared wood, spotted winged wood quail. More include Venezuelan, spotted, Japanese, Newzeland quail.
Domesticated Quail Breed
There are over 70 types of quail domesticated and farmed. The coturnix is ideal for meat production based on their larger size. They are also prolific egg producers and the meat is delicious. Other notable farmed quail are the king quail, blue breasted, Chinese painted and button quail.
• Mearns quail
• Japanese quail
• Button quail
• Chinese quail
• Mountain quail
• California quail
• Jungle bush quail
• King quail
• Blue breasted quail
• Scaled quail
• Gambels quail
Write a Business Plan
You need to write a quail farming business plan. The plan should cover purchase of the bird, housing and labour.
Create a budget, develop a marketing strategy and feasibility study. You need to identify your market base and competitors. You need to learn the trade and incorporate the business.
In some countries certain species of the bird are protected. You need a commercial farming license to keep the birds. You could decide to incorporate as a Limited Liability Company or sole proprietorship. Get insurance cover and tax identification number.
The quail bird is a good source for protein. They are raised for their meat and eggs. The birds are also breed for fun and leisure. Quail eggs are considered a delicacy and popular in Asia, North America, Europe.
It is also popular in Japanese cuisine, pickled, smoked, fried, boiled, skewered or eaten raw. The birds mature in 6 to 7 weeks and lay 310 eggs a year.
Ways the Quail Eggs are Served
• The eggs are pickled
• eaten raw
The birds are kept in aviaries or cages. The cages should be ventilated with water though. They can grow in a deep litter system before introduction to cages.
It is possible to house one hundred birds in one medium sized cage. A cage size of 3ft x 2.5ft x 1.5ft will accommodate 100 quail. Feed them nutritious food and maintain a clean hygienic environment.
1. Deep litter system
2. Cage system
Feeding the Birds
The birds hardly consume much and are easy to feed. They eat rice bran, broken oyster shell, kipper fish. They eat broken wheat, seeds and poultry mash. Feed the bird’s fish meal, mineral mix.
• eat rice bran
• broken oyster shell
• kipper fish
• broken wheat
• poultry mash
Purchase the Birds
Purchase your birds from a reputable breeder. You may buy a specific breed or multiple breeds. Buy the large ones for meat and egg production.
The number of birds you buy depends on the cage space and feed requirements. To breed the birds you need one male and six females.
The birds are hardy and rugged with few health issues. The sometimes suffer from coccidiosis or ulcerative enteritis disease. Good hygiene and proper facility management is beneficial.
Sell the bird eggs and meat to market women. Other customers are hotels, restaurants and food outlets. Use print of electronic media to reach customers.
Print flyers, posters and banners. Use newspaper publications and food related magazines. Build a website for the business and target your demography.