When I started raising quail I had to figure things out on my own through trial and error because the majority of quail breeders were raising their birds in cages.
Through months of observation I was able to figure out what worked and what doesn’t; this leads me to these easy to build quail shelters.
I shared them a couple years ago but failed to include building plans. You can view the originals here.
Back then I was trying to learn if these birds would even use nesting boxes which was a quick no but when it rains or when it’s really hot they like to hide for shelter, even if tall grass is available.
I’ve used these shelters for Coturnix and Bobwhite quail and in most of my articles you’ll notice them mixed throughout their terrain. I absolutely love these shelters and so do the birds.
Quail Shelter Supplies
This project can be modified in the blink of an eye by building small or large. Our shelter for today happens to be 2 ft. x 1 ft. and I have others that are 3.5 x 2.
The building plans are the same which makes this project a breeze to duplicate.
Instead of focusing on the measurements we’ll direct our attention towards supplies so you can construct these shelters to fit your quail coop.
- Eight ft. 2 x 3’s for frame (You could also use 2 x 4’s)
- Plywood for Roof
- Cedar or pine Fence boards for walls
- Drill and Saw
- Stain and Brush (or use exterior paint)
We’re basically building a box, well part of a box beginning with the frame so we need the following pieces customized to size for your coop or sanctuary.
- 4 corners for height
- 2 ends
- 2 width
Start by connecting the ends and width pieces to make a rectangle. Drill one pilot hole in each corner before connecting the frame with screws.
Learn more about pilot holes here.
After this is completed follow through by adding a leg in each corner. You’ll need two screws for each corner.
Stand the frame upright to make sure everything is level then add the walls with screws. I did some overlapping with the walls on this shelter using cedar fence planks, I was focused on creating additional ventilation.
Connect the bottom piece first, the top last, then come around the front and add two more pieces in the entry.
Adding the Roof
Use plywood for the roof because it’s easy to work with.
Cut the wood with a table, circular or jig saw; I chose a jig saw because I wanted a swirled roof.
If you’re seeking a straight edge then go ahead and use a table saw as it offers a clean cut.. Once the roof is shaped correctly go ahead and screw it into the frame.
Note – The roof can have an overhang adds character and is a nice addition when it’s raining.
Finish with Stain
The shelter is completed which leaves us to finish with stain. I’ve used paint in the past but I’m here to say the stain lasts longer.
Leave the interior of the box natural and apply the stain with a brush to the exterior, let the wood soak it right up then air dry outside.
The stain will project the wood from rotting, making your shelters last longer.
These shelters have been a hit with the quail, myself and they’re easy to move. They work great in a natural ground environment because they provide protection year-round for all types of weather. Additional explanation for incorporating these shelters can be viewed in the following posts.
This project was made from scrap wood so if you have additional building materials in your workshop use these instructions and come up with something similar or duplicate this easy build.
If You’re thinking about raising quail check out my book Quail Getting Started. it was written for beginners who want to raise quail in a natural environment.
Give these shelters a try, they’re easy to build and perfect for Bobwhite and Coturnix quail.
Smiles and Sunshine, Carole West