Japanese Quail

(Coturnix japonica)

Other Names: Asian Migratory Quail, Coturnix Quail, Eastern Common Quail, Manchurian Quail; domesticated forms known from a host of names that reflect their coloration or size.

Range: Migratory, breeds in eastern Asia - northern Mongolia, southern Siberia, northern China, Japan and North Korea; winters southern and central China, South Korea, southern Japan, Vietnam, Laos and Thailand. Introduced to the Hawaiian Islands and Rιunion Island in the Indian Ocean.

Subspecies: Sometimes considered a race of Common Quail (Coturnix coturnix japonica). A paler form in Siberian is sometimes known as C. j. ussuriensis.

Habitat: Grasslands


Status in Wild: Despite a very large domesticated population, the wild population is now considered uncommon due to overhunting and habitat loss.

Avicultural Data

Status in Aviculture: The domesticated forms are bred by the thousands (if not millions) for food production and hobby.

Breeding Age: Domestic forms will have adult plumage at six weeks and hens will begin producing eggs shortly after.

Clutch Size: Wild, averages from 5 to 9; captive birds are known to produce more than a 100 per year.

Incubation Period: 16 to 18 days

Misc. Aviculture Notes: A very commonly kept species and often kept in horrible, all wire battery-style cages for mass production. It is recommended to give the birds an aviary with natural surroundings. Rather non-aggressive, would be a good ground bird with finches and doves. It is unlikely that hens will go broody and if you are wanting to produce chicks, artificial incubation will probably be needed, but one may gain success in an aviary. Please note that this quail will produce a very large number of eggs per year.

Some of the domesticated forms include Tuxedo in which the overall plumage is dark brown with a white breast or belly; the White, pretty obvious here, all white plumage; Pharoah, Golden Manchurian, British Range, Speckled are some of the forms you will find in captivity.


No images available for this species.

Photo Credits
(l to r):.

Any help with photos would be greatly appreciated; e-mail lophura@hughes.net if you can help.

Bibliography and Further Reading


Links related to this species. Please note, links will open in a new window.

¦ Return to the Quail Page ¦

gbwf.org © 1997-2008, Dan Cowell
• avicultural forums • pheasants & peafowl • grouse • francolins & partridge •
• quail • guineafowl & turkey • hoagba • ggbba • links • books • contact •
eXTReMe Tracker