Can Quails Eat Bread? Is it Safe?

Quails are making a comeback in terms of popularity compared to other kinds of poultry. Quail meat and quail eggs are highly nutritious, and quail are so much smaller than chickens so can be easily kept on much smaller properties and in close quarters.

a few quails inside a cage
a few quails inside a cage

Quail have a diet that’s similar to, but distinct, from other birds, and you’ll need to make sure their unique nutritional requirements are met.

How about bread? Is it safe for quails to eat bread?

Yes, quails can eat bread safely but only in very limited amounts. Bread is a decent source of energy for quail, but it doesn’t have much in the way of vitamins or minerals that they need. It’s basically junk food for birds.

Like most birds quails seem to really enjoy getting some bread crumbs now and then, and in this regard it makes a great treat for them.

But like most treats, it’s something that they should have only in strict moderation if you want them to be healthy.

Keep reading, and I’ll tell you everything you need to know about giving bread to your covey of quails.

Is Bread Good for Quails?

Honestly, no. Bread isn’t very good for quails, but it’s not particularly harmful either as long as they don’t get too much of.

Bread will give quails energy, of course, but it doesn’t have much in the way of other nutrients that they have to have in their daily diet.

Also, bread is somewhat hard for quails to digest, and this can make it challenging for them to eat it on a regular basis.

Additionally, the general indigestibility of bread for quails means that the macro and micronutrients that are present might not do too much good for them.

But, there’s one thing worth clarifying before we move on: bread isn’t going to hurt or kill your quails if you don’t give them too much of it too often!

It won’t make them swell up, it won’t rupture their stomach or anything like that.

That’s all urban legend, thank goodness. But giving your quails too much bread too frequently will lead to health problems and malnutrition because they will fill up on the stuff and miss out on other foods.

Bread Nutritional Profile

The nutritional profile of bread can vary significantly depending on the kind, but generally bread is pretty much all carbohydrates although it will have some vitamins, minerals and protein.

Particularly in the case of your factory-produced breads, you can expect them to be fortified with vitamins like niacin, riboflavin and others along with minerals like iron.

On the surface, these are definitely things that quails need in their diet but like we discussed above they aren’t going to do them a lot of good here because bread is mostly empty calories and somewhat hard for them to digest besides.

Can You Safely Feed Baked Bread to Quails?

Yes, and this is the only way you should give bread to your quails. Whether it is soft or crunchy, quails love baked bread.

Is White Bread Okay for Quails?

Yes, white bread is totally safe for quails, although if you have any other options, I would recommend wheat bread or something that is less processed in general.

Is Wheat Bread Okay for Quails?

Yes, wheat bread is just fine for your quails. As mentioned above, it is superior to white bread although not by much.

Can You Safely Feed Bread Dough to Quails?

No! Bread dough is not okay for quails. Bread dough is a major choking hazard for these little birds and it is even less digestible than baked bread.

The presence of yeast in the bread dough is likely to cause crop issues and it can cause other serious health concerns and injuries besides. Only ever give your quails fully baked bread, and do so sparingly!

Can You Safely Feed Stale Bread to Quails?

Yes, you can. Merely old bread is fine for your quails, even if it’s something that we wouldn’t eat ourselves. It won’t matter to your quails if it’s a little tough or crusty, you can just crush it up into little bits to make it easy for them to eat.

However, you should never, ever give your quails any bread that is moldy or spoiled because this can make them sick or even kill them.

Is Bread Still Safe for Quail Chicks?

Yes, but with some serious reservations. Quail chicks are even tinier and more delicate than adults, and I also have highly specific nutritional needs at this young and important phase of their lives.

Bread crumbs are certainly soft enough for quail chicks to eat, and they can get some energy from them, but the stuff is basically nutritionally bankrupt.

Quail chicks should be eating healthy, nutritious foods at all times so their bodies can have the resources they desperately need.

It’s not a big deal if the chicks get a nibble of bread crumbs here and there, but I wouldn’t make it a point of feeding it to them.

How Often Can Quails Have Bread?

Only rarely. I would say no more than a small handful of breadcrumbs once a week at most as a treat.

At no point should your quails be filling up on bread crumbs, because then they will miss out on other, more nutritious foods.

How Should You Serve Bread to Your Covey?

The very best way to give bread to your quails is to crush it up into crumbs. This will make it a cinch for the quails to eat them one tiny little peck at a time.

You can give them larger intact pieces of bread and let them nibble on them, but for tougher or crustier bread they will struggle a little bit.

Remember! Mind the quantity, and I strongly recommend that you do not at any time give your quails unlimited access to bread!

Don’t Give Bread to Your Quail if it Has Bad Ingredients

There’s an almost infinite variety of bread that you can get, and countless recipes you can make yourself at home.

Lots of bread recipes also call for additional ingredients like cheese, fruit, nuts, icing, and things like that. All delicious, to be sure, but none of these are things that your quails should be allowed to eat.

Too much sugar, too much salt, and simply too many calories can cause serious health problems for your quails, and compared to chickens they tend to be more susceptible to health problems when their diet goes way off track.

But this is easy to avoid so long as you stick with giving your quails plain, simple bread made with minimal ingredients.

Never Leave Bread Scraps Lying Around

This really isn’t an issue if you give your quails breadcrumbs, but if you do give them hunks of bread or even larger pieces, make sure you pick up any leftovers once they have had their fill.

Like I talked about above, bread will mold very quickly, and if your quails come back around and eat this moldy bread later on, it could make them sick and you definitely don’t want that!

Remember that stale bread is okay, but not moldy or rotting bread.

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