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1

King Quail

(Synoicus (Coturnix) chinensis)
Alternate name(s): "Chinese Quail", "Chestnut-bellied Quail", "Least Quail", "Dwarf Quail", "Swamp Quail*"
Size: 13-15 cm

Similar species

Description     Classification     Distribution     Sightings     Photos     Breeding     Nest     Eggs     Behaviour     Food     Call/s

Physical description

Click here for a physical description

Taxonomy, classification

See King Quail at Wikipedia .

Click here for classification information

Range, habitat, finding this species

Click here for information on habitat and range

Sightings

Click here for sighting information

Photos

ADULT

MALE

Frontal view of a male King Quail in captivity (photo courtesy of J. Greaves)

FEMALE

Frontal view of a female King Quail in captivity (photo courtesy of J. Greaves)

Breeding information

Breeding season: Jan - Dec Eggs: 4 - 10 Incubation period: 18 - 20 days Fledging age: ?

The breeding season of King Quails depends on geographic latitude. While they can, in principle breed any time of year, their core breeding periods are September to March in the south-eastern part of the continent and February to May in the North.

Quail vs. Button-quail

Although the two genera of the true quails, Coturnix, and the button-quails, Turnix, are outwardly very similar, and therefore often listed together, there are significant differences between them (which is the reason why they are in different family groups here).

Coturnix Turnix
Similar species Chicken-like Wader-like
Toes 4 toes, one of which points backward 3 toes, all of which point forward
Nesting habits Communal Non-communal
Main incubator Female Male
Incubation period ca. 21 days ca. 14 days
No. of eggs 8-12 ≤ 4

Nest building: ? Incubation: Female & male Dependent care: Female & male

King Quail chicks are precocial, i.e. they leave the nest very shortly after hatchling and will feed themselves, under the supervision of their parents.

Nest

"bungobittah", "malunna" = nest [Aboriginal]

Type: Basket in scrape Material: Dry grass Height above ground: N/A

The nest is either on the ground beside a grass tussock or in a grass tussock.

Eggs

"boyanga", "booyanga", "derinya", "dirandil", "koomura", "ngampu", "nooluk", "pateena" = Egg; "dirundirri" = eggs [Aboriginal]; "gawu" = eggs [gamilaraay]

Size: 20 x 15 mm Colour: Creamy, with light-brown speckles Shape: Tapered oval

Two King Quail eggs in a communal nest (photo courtesy of J. Greaves)

These pages are largely based on our own observations and those of our contributors. The structure of these bird pages is explained HERE. For more salient facts on any bird species please refer to a field guide.

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