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In areas where chickens and other larger fowl are not allowed, quail are a great option.  Quail may be reared indoors in a large bird cage or in part of your yard using a "run" (an enclosure made with a light-frame and bird netting).  The Bobwhite breed generally produce the most eggs, plus good quality meat.   Texas A & M hybrid Button quail grow the fastest and produce the most meat.  A small incubator and an order of fertile quail eggs will get you started.  You will need to find and follow directions in a good quail production book to avoid errors.  The big mistake for beginners is that they give quail chicks enough water to drown themselves in the first few days. Provide water in a fruit-jar lid filled with small marbles along with water ... and this will keep chicks out of the water.  (A Google search will provide you with several sources of quail eggs.)

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N.B.  With a small quail-run inside a greenhouse, the quail will help control insects.   

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Comment by Jennifer on September 3, 2013 at 9:35am

David: Are you raising quail yourself now or have you in the past? Or are you thinking about it? I'm curious if anyone who has raised quail as well as other fowl, where allowed, have preferences? Lauren talks a bit about chickens vs ducks in her new 101, but it would be interesting to hear from someone who has tried all three.

Comment by David Nuttle on September 3, 2013 at 10:46am

Jennifer,  I am raising quail now and have done so in the past.  In prior years, I also raised chickens and ducks.  For an urban environment, quail are usually the best option.

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