How can you distinguish a male quail from a female, sex determination methods

How can you distinguish a male quail from a female, sex determination methods

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Quail breeding is associated with various difficulties. Many quail breeders doubt whether they correctly distinguish the female from the male, and also talk about how to do this, what signs exist for this. The difficulty of identifying at an early age is associated with a minimal set of differences. Quail sex is important to breeders for a reason that underlies any breeding. This reason is the planning of the offspring of birds.

How to tell the sex of quails

Sex determination is difficult in the first days of life. Experienced breeders are guided by plumage, voice, weight and sex characteristics. It is difficult to determine by feather in breeds, females and males of which have the same plumage in color. Then use related techniques.

By appearance

You can determine the gender by the main differences:

  • quails are lighter than quails;
  • the chest of males has a brighter color, colored spots stand out on the central part;
  • boys are distinguished by the disproportionality of the head in relation to the body: the head is smaller in size, which looks strange from the side;
  • in girls, the lines of the head flow smoothly into the lines of the body, the females are proportionally folded;
  • girls move more slowly than boys: at first this is due to the peculiarities of behavior, then it is explained by the peculiarities of physiology;
  • in boys, the shape of the pelvic bones is straightforward;
  • in girls, on the line where the pelvic bones connect to the legs, a kind of fork is formed: this feature helps the females to lay eggs easily;
  • quail often has a white stripe on the neck, resembling a collar;
  • beak coloration in males is darker than in females.

Attention! The method of determination by color is valid when the species is expressed in the breed. With a lubricated type of plumage, the determination is difficult.

By voice and behavior

The study of habits and vocal data helps to find out the gender with a high degree of probability. The voice of a young quail is melodic and pleasant. Unlike quails, males are noisy, hysterical notes slip in their voice. Females after the onset of puberty almost do not enter into conflicts, talk little.

Behavioral differences between males and females:

Birds circle over females to attract their attention. They can go up, then dive down.Females pretend not to pay attention to whirling. They chant, sitting on branches, do not enter into mating games until a certain moment, until they make the final choice.
From 3 weeks, they begin to give a voice, the voice differs in volume, saturation.From 3 weeks, they timidly give a voice, their communication is like a whisper
Males climb onto females, holding on to their crest with their beak.Because of this, bald patches appear on the females' heads.

Reference! Males constantly sort things out, get into fights. Females are sociable until they have offspring.

By the cesspool

Cloaca helps to distinguish gender with a 100% result. In the first weeks of life, the color of the cloaca is pale pink. As they grow older, the cloaca changes color:

  • in females it becomes bluish;
  • in males, the cloaca remains pink.

Cloaca sex determination works with high accuracy after puberty. To determine the cloaca, press hard. In the male, after pressing, a foaming liquid begins to stand out.

To use this method, you need to find the cloaca. To do this, take the bird in hands, turn it belly up, spread the tail feathers with your fingers and examine the cloaca. When pressing on the cloaca from both sides, the females become visible smooth, almost glossy muscles. In males, an elevation of muscles and muscles gradually appears, and fluid begins to stand out.

Bird weight

After puberty in birds, sex determination is associated with weight analysis. Females are larger than males by a quarter of the total weight. They look much larger, subcutaneous fat is deposited on different parts of the body, which is provided by nature. Subcutaneous fat allows heat to be more efficiently distributed during the brooding period.

The male, in comparison with the female, looks lighter, he has almost no deposits of subcutaneous fat, he is inclined to active movement, often picks up other quails, enters into fights, where the winner is determined by the superiority of strength and dexterity.

How to distinguish a female from a male, taking into account the breed

Breed descriptions help to understand how different sex characteristics are. For each breed, there is a set of specific criteria. Breed descriptions are used to determine sex from the second month of the bird's existence.


Pharaoh is the breed that is closest to wild quail species in the traditional sense. The main color of the plumage is brownish-yellow. The main difference between females is lighter plumage. Pharaoh females are closer to golden hue in color, males are described as brown-gold birds. Quails often have pronounced yellow, bright spots on the chest.

Expert opinion

Zarechny Maxim Valerievich

Agronomist with 12 years of experience. Our best summer cottage expert.

Both sexes of the Pharaoh breed have a white stripe on the neck, which resembles a kind of collar, so this feature is not considered informative.

The Pharaoh breed differs in that when they grow up, females weigh 80-90 grams more than males, and at the same time look more massive.


The Texas breed is an artificially bred hybrid. Birds of several species with white plumage were taken as the basis for selection. The coloring of the parental lines led to the fact that the children received a specific type of feathers without the possibility of a colored chick.

Texans of both sexes are evenly colored. Their white plumage allows interspersed black feathers on the central part of the body. As they grow older, the difference between males and females becomes noticeable. An adult quail weighs 100 grams more than a quail.

Average values ​​for the Texas breed:

  • the female weighs from 450 to 500 grams;
  • males weigh between 350 and 380 grams.


There are several ways to distinguish a boy from a girl of the Estonian breed. Estonians are similar in characteristics to the Pharaoh breed, therefore, the description of the color is rarely taken as a basis.

Females are lighter in color than males. On the chest, the color of the plumage seems to be blurred. Quail has a distinct clarity. On the chest, feathers stand out especially in contrast. The main color of the plumage is brown-golden; in boys, the appearance of black-red feathers in the plumage of the central part of the chest is allowed.

Attention! To determine the sex of the Estonian breed, the characteristic of plumage color is almost not used due to its low information content.


Determining the sex of the Manchu breed is quite difficult. This can only be done when the birds are at sexual maturity. By this time, the color of the plumage becomes more pronounced and understandable. The breed is characterized by the following features:

  • females have variegated plumage, clearly colored feathers are visible on their chest, a light-colored crown stands out on their heads;
  • quail males acquire a red color with age, a dark pattern forms on the head, turning into a mask near the beak.


Tuxedo quails belong to the category of meat breeds, so it is especially important for breeders to determine the sex of the bird as early as possible. Individuals can be separated using color analysis, as well as focusing on the characteristics of the cloaca.

The tuxedo breed is so named for its appearance. The main tone of bird feathers is brown-yellow, while a white spot stands out on the chest of both sexes, from a distance resembling the outline of a tuxedo. The color of the main plumage on the back and tail in females is lighter and smudged. Lines flow smoothly without creating clear boundaries. Quails have a more pronounced white, tuxedo part with well-defined lines.

The second sign is the weight of the birds: males weigh from 180 to 200 grams, females weigh from 220 to 230 grams. This sign is formed by 3-4 months of existence.

It is difficult to recognize the tuxedo breed by its behavior: both sexes are fearful, do not differ in special voice differences, hysterical notes slip in the voices of males and females when danger approaches.

Gender determination for quail breeders during the initial stage of housing is an important condition for planning offspring. Early gender recognition increases the profitability of housing and helps to determine the productivity of the livestock in advance.

Watch the video: How to identify Male or Female in Chicks. Vent Sexing in chicks. chicks sexing (August 2022).