Are you raising quail? It’s the new hot ticket for enterprising homesteaders – for super-nutritious eggs and meat in the kitchen and farmer’s market, to sell as livestock, and because they’re cute as kittens!
Quail are also vulnerable to predators and the elements, so naturally, reliable and sturdy quail coop ideas are essential.
Luckily – you can build the perfect backyard quail coop using your DIY skills and a clever quail coop DIY plan or idea!
We’ve compiled a set of FREE DIY quail coop ideas and plans brimming with building tips and insights to help you create a user-friendly coop, cage, aviary, or tractor to nurture and protect your quail.
Are you ready for some fun?
Then let us begin!
- 17 Free Quail Coop Ideas and Plans – Building Tips
- The Best Free Quail Coop Ideas and Plans – Our Official List
- 1. Elevated Backyard Quail Hutch with Enclosed Dust Bath DIY Idea
- 2. Multi-Layered Indoor Quail Cage Idea with Egg Rollout Tray
- 3. Elevated Outdoor Quail Hutch Plans with Feeder
- 4. Indoor Stacked Quail Cage Plans with Materials & Cut List
- 5. Eye-Level Outdoor Quail Coop Plans with Wide Roof
- 6. Winterized Solar-Lit Two-Tier Quail Hutch Idea
- 7. Easy DIY Small Outdoor Quail Coop Idea
- 8. Predator-Proof Outdoor Quail Run Step-by-Step Plans
- 9. DIY Backyard Quail Aviary Idea on a Repurposed Concrete Slab
- 10. DIY Outdoor Hoop House Quail Run Idea
- 11. Cheap DIY Indoor Stackable Quail Cage Idea with PVC Pipe Frame
- 12. Low-Cost DIY Pallet Wood Quail Coop Idea with Egg Rollout Floor
- 13. Small Predator-Proof DIY Quail Tractor Idea
- 14. Two-tier DIY Quail Hutch on Wheels Plans
- 15. Three-Tier Indoor Quail Coop DIY Plans
- 16. Urban Backyard Quail Hutch and Run Idea
- 17. DIY Large Quail Tractor Idea for Pastured Quail
- Bonus – DIY Quail Coop Hacks
- Conclusion – What’s Your Quail Coop DIY Coup?
17 Free Quail Coop Ideas and Plans – Building Tips
The best free quail house plans and ideas share coop proportions to provide optimal ergonomics while promoting quail well-being. For both indoors and outdoors! Considerations include ample floor space, security from predators, insulation, ventilation, light, feed, and water, a sand bath, and efficient waste removal.
We looked for free quail coop ideas and plans that respect the health and well-being of the little game birds while also considering your well-being, notably your back and your budget!
Here are the vital design considerations for a robust, efficient, healthy DIY quail coop.
- Quail coops should ideally allow one square foot of floor space for each quail (overcrowding caged quail leads to quail fighting and ill health).
- The ceiling height of quail coops should be either lower than 18” or higher than 6’ to prevent startled quail from taking flight and potentially injuring or breaking their necks on a low ceiling.
- Feeder troughs in the quail coop should provide ± ½-inch access space per quail.
- Quail waterers should have ± ¼-inch access space per quail.
- Quail are prey for various predators, including rodents, raccoons, dogs and cats, snakes, and predatory birds.
- Outdoor quail coops should ideally get made using ¼” galvanized steel mesh (hardware cloth) for the walls and, if necessary, chicken wire for the floor of outdoor quail coops that rest on the ground.
- Outdoor quail coops should get made with a mesh apron – protective mesh sunk into the ground to prevent critters from burrowing into the quail coop.
- Indoor quail cages and quail coops can use ¼” hardware cloth (preferably PVC-coated) for the floors.
- Quail coop ceilings lower than one foot should get made of loosely fitted ¼” hardware cloth.
- Solid roofing should not rest directly on the hardware cloth ceiling.
- A dust bath is essential in a quail coop to prevent parasite infestation, maintain optimum oil levels on the feathers, and remove dead skin.
- Quail droppings from elevated coops should either fall from the coop cage floor to the ground. Or be trapped in quail litter (dirt, wood shavings, sawdust, sand, or wood ash) in a catch tray beneath the coop cage.
Ventilation and Insulation
- Quail coops should allow fresh air to pass through the cage.
- Outdoor quail coops should get shaded from direct overhead sunlight in warm regions.
- Quail coops should have an insulted nesting box to protect against cold wind and air.
- Electric light bulbs can get used to heat quail coops in cold weather.
- Quails need between 14 to 16 hours of light daily. Sunlight helps them to lay eggs optimally.
- Fitting electric light bulbs to the coop to provide light after sunset can augment direct sunlight.
- Indoor quail coops may need electric light for up to 16 hours daily.
- The best quail coop designs allow the quail keeper (aka a quail tender) easy access to the cage interior to gather eggs, fill the feed and water troughs, and clean the coop.
The Best Free Quail Coop Ideas and Plans – Our Official List
We searched tirelessly to find the best free quail coop ideas. We think the following can match any homestead – whether you have a massive budget or something much thriftier.
1. Elevated Backyard Quail Hutch with Enclosed Dust Bath DIY Idea
Why not kick off your quail adventure with this easy-to-DIY quail hutch idea from Slightly Rednecked that observes all the primary criteria for quail health and quail-keeper happiness?
The quail hutch makes an ideal backyard quail hutch project. Using standard lumber from your hardware store:
- Screw a post-and-bearer elevated frame using 2” x 4” and 1” x 4” boards.
- Staple ¼-inch hardware cloth to the timber frame to create a floor, walls, and ceiling.
- Fit rafters to the upright posts and install corrugated roofing.
- Use plywood boards to build an en-suite dust bathhouse.
We appreciate the simplicity of this DIY build and the fact that it gives the quail a safe and natural home off the ground at an ergonomic height for the quail-keeper.
The key benefits of this backyard quail hutch are:
- Lots of natural light.
- Easy to clean.
- Protection from foul weather and predatory critters.
- Inexpensive and easy to build.
HANDY TIP: Predrill all the screw holes to prevent the timber from splitting when the screws get inserted.
Get the idea HERE FREE!
2. Multi-Layered Indoor Quail Cage Idea with Egg Rollout Tray
If you have a few square feet of cozy and safe barn space to spare, a multi-layered quail cage with integrated egg rollout trays will get your quail egg business off to a great start, as Dexter’s World demonstrates in this DIY quail cage walkthrough.
The design is a simple 2” x 4” timber frame with sloped plywood poop barriers that serve as roofs for each cage tier.
Dexter uses plastic hexagonal chicken wire mesh, which is safe for elevated indoor quail coops and marginally easier on the feet of the quail than steel mesh.
- NOTE! Plastic mesh is not 100% predator-proof.
The plastic hardware cloth floors of the cages are sloped ever so slightly to allow the quail eggs to roll from the quail cage through the gap Dexter has at the base of one wall of each quail cage.
While using this design outdoors runs a significant risk of your quail becoming fast food for predators, the idea is nifty for predator-free indoor quail egg production because of the following.
- The sloped floors make egg gathering low-mess and ergonomic.
- The sloped plywood poop trays are easy to clean.
- Low cost of materials.
- Simple DIY construction.
Get the idea HERE FREE!
3. Elevated Outdoor Quail Hutch Plans with Feeder
Borrowing the idea from Slightly Rednecked, our #1 quail coop project, Emergency Prep Guy, adds a wooden hopper feeder to his outdoor quail hutch. And he details how he executed the build.
The plans on his website include the following.
- A detailed materials and tools list.
- Lumber sizes and cut lengths.
- How to safely assemble the frame and quail cage hutch divisions.
- How to build and install the DIY wooden quail feeder.
The plans include several tips to ensure an efficient build and optimal use of building materials. Nice!
Get the FREE quail hutch plans HERE (videos included).
4. Indoor Stacked Quail Cage Plans with Materials & Cut List
Getting your quail coop plans from a true quail enthusiast is a great way to get your quail-raising adventure off to a wholesome start. Check out these plans (and video) from Coturnix Corner to get a good idea of how to DIY an indoor 3-tier quail cage.
Simple but appealing, this DIY quail cage build uses standard 2” x 2” lumber, plywood, hardware cloth, hinges, automotive drip trays, barrel bolts, staples, and PVC piping for a watering system.
- The floors of the three stacked cages get made using PVC-coated ½”-inch hardware cloth for happy quail feet!
- Three automotive drip trays get used as poop collection trays. And they make for easy cleaning.
- Plywood gets used to create a solid backing for the three-tier coop, adding extra rigidity and preventing quail poop from dirtying the garage wall.
A solid DIY set-up for indoor quail that respects the comfort requirements of these fantastic little game birds!
Here's the ultimate guide on raising Coturnix Quail by Alexandra Douglas - the Quail Lady! She has over a decade's worth of experience raising poultry - and has raised birds since she was a kid. Her book teaches little-known insights about buying, caring for, raising, breeding, and housing quail. It makes raising quail from scratch much more straightforward.
5. Eye-Level Outdoor Quail Coop Plans with Wide Roof
If bending down to pick up quail eggs isn’t your idea of happy homesteading, an outdoor eye-level quail coop may be your solution, as detailed in this easy DIY project from instructibles.com.
The plans include materials and cut lists for standard lumber sizes, including 2” x 4”, 1” x 4”, and 2” x 8”-inch lengths.
- A sloped polycarbonate roof and barn door hinges give this tall outdoor quail coop a classic chunky-and-funky look!
- Concrete piers form the base for six long but sturdy legs.
- You’ll need wire cutters for the ½” and ¼” hardware cloth.
- The 2” x 8” rafters provide ample space to mount decorative plant hooks.
Bonus: Outdoor quail coops don’t need a poop tray! The droppings fall through the hardware cloth onto the ground below and can get effortlessly scooped up for composting.
An outdoor quail coop that stands on legs three feet above the ground will help prevent your quail from becoming dinner for predators. And it’ll save your back muscles from spasms!
Get the FREE plans here.
6. Winterized Solar-Lit Two-Tier Quail Hutch Idea
Can quail survive a harsh winter outdoors? They certainly can. For sure! It helps if you build them a well-protected, walled shelter in a rabbit hutch style! Here’s an excellent DIY quail hutch idea for snowy climes, a quail condo from mainesconfettiquailfarm.com.
Get standard 2” x 4” timber for the frame, plywood for the walls, ceilings, and floors, hardware cloth for the windows (ventilation, dividers, and a view), pool liner (for the quail coop floors and roof), and hinges to construct a two-tiered hutch capable of housing 16 quail.
- Mount the stacked hutches on short, stout gum poles on concrete pavers.
- Cover the floors and roof with a pond liner.
- Finish the completed quail coop hutch with enamel paint.
- Install a solar lighting kit with a timer (for light and heat).
- Establish a small garden on the roof (plants and herbs!).
The idea is relatively simple to make. But it does require regular interior cleaning due to the solid floor. The builder uses sand and alfalfa as litter in the quail coop hutches. Which, once removed, makes perfect compost for the garden!
Get the idea here.
7. Easy DIY Small Outdoor Quail Coop Idea
Looking to DIY a small backyard quail coop that’s cheap to build and light enough to be moved by two people? Here’s a nifty quail cage idea from 4 Kids and a Farm that includes an egg-rolling floor!
This quail coop idea can house up to 16 quail both outdoors in warm weather and indoors in winter. The design uses standard 2” x 4”, 1” x 2”, 2” x 2”, and 2” x 3” timber lengths, plus hardware cloth and plywood boarding.
- The coop is elevated two feet off the ground. (Easy for kids to learn quail tending.) And it incorporates a hinged door with a barrel bolt latch.
- A zinc roof rounds off a sturdy, roomy, and easily portable quail coop for all seasons!
The egg rollout floor can get fitted with foam insulation tape to prevent the eggs from cracking as they hit the lip of the egg rolling tray.
Get the idea here.
8. Predator-Proof Outdoor Quail Run Step-by-Step Plans
Your quail will agree – the more space they have to move about with their feet in the earth and headroom to fly while within a safely-fenced run, the happier they’ll be. We couldn’t agree more, and selfsufficientme.com shows you how to build your quail idyll, step-by-step!
The plans describe the process of building a simple post, cross-brace, and hardware cloth run, with wiggle room for your custom requirements:
- Select a flat and elevated patch of ground as the site.
- Level the site and measure for holes to sink and concrete in several tall posts.
- Dig a trench to insert protective anti-burrow steel mesh.
- Fit cross-bracing to the roof area.
- Attach hardware cloth.
- Make a door with timber and hinges.
- Add natural elements to the quail run.
With oodles of interior space, the quail run can get equipped with a cozy hutch for warmth in chilly weather!
You can watch the video here or,
Get the plans here.
9. DIY Backyard Quail Aviary Idea on a Repurposed Concrete Slab
Do you have an old shed with a concrete floor? Has the shed seen better days? Keep the concrete floor and build a beautiful quail aviary on top of it. A quail aviary will give your little game birds a natural, safe, and spacious home so they can fly! Coturnix Corner shows how to get it done.
A concrete floor is ideal for an outdoor quail coop, keeping predators at bay with no problem. This quail aviary idea uses standard lumber sizes – 2” x 4” and 2” x 2” boards to construct a simple framework for hardware cloth walls and a tarp roof.
- Extra protection, shade, and aesthetic appeal get added using a wooden lattice garden trellis at the base of the aviary.
Bed the aviary with a sand-dirt mix and decorate the interior with all things natural that make quail feel right at home, including branches, grasses, roosting boxes, etc.
The cool part of this quail aviary idea is – you can sit in it and get acquainted with your quail flock!
Get the idea here.
- 5 Best Quail Incubators to Hatch Eggs at Home!
- Homesteader’s Guide to Quail Farming – Eggs, Raising, and More!
- 8 Most Profitable Farming Animals | 2023 USA Smart Farmer’s Guide!
- Complete Guide to the Best Animals for Small Farms and Homesteads!
- 8 Black and White Duck Breeds! Farm Ducks, Wood Ducks, and Sea Ducks!
10. DIY Outdoor Hoop House Quail Run Idea
With room to stretch their wings without danger, your quail will be much healthier and happier than battery quail. A quail run provides a lofty length of protected space in your yard for your quail to forage and fly, just like they do in the wild!
Create a hoop house design using horse panels, standard lumber, and wire mesh for an easy DIY quail run project, a la Cabin on the Hill Homestead.
- Build a rectangular wooden base frame on which to mount hooped horse panels.
You’ll need the following
- 3 x 16’ x 5’ horse panels for the hoop.
- 4” x 4” timber boards for the base framework and center support posts.
- 2” x 4” timber boards for the base cross bracing and a door.
- Chicken wire. Or better yet, ¼” hardware cloth to cover the hooped horse panels.
- Heavy-duty cable ties connect the horse panels and secure the wire mesh to the hoop superstructure.
- A tarp to draw over a section of the hoop house to create shade and protection from the elements.
Key design considerations include:
- Sinking the wire mesh below ground level to help prevent predators from burrowing into the quail run.
- Erect the quail run in a well-shaded area.
- Cover most of the quail run with greenhouse plastic during winter. Greenhouse plastic protects the quail from wind and snow. While still allowing sunlight to stream into the quail run.
This DIY quail run idea is not a cheap exercise, but it’s a relatively simple task requiring only two sets of hands! And you’ll have the happiest quail in the county!
Get the idea here.
11. Cheap DIY Indoor Stackable Quail Cage Idea with PVC Pipe Frame
Is the skyrocketing price of timber preventing your DIY ideas from happening? Here’s a wood-free quail cage idea that’s low-cost and easy to build – if you’re handy at bending wire.
Slightly Rednecked (Chris is his name) demonstrates how to effortlessly and cheaply suspend two handmade all-wire quail cages and two quail droppings trays inside a PVC pipe frame!
Materials you will need to construct the cages include:
- ¼” Hardware cloth.
- Heavy-gauge fencing mesh. You’ll only need two short lengths. So offcuts will do fine.
To fabricate the quail cages, use a 1” x 4” board length as a straightedge. Against which 90-degree edges can get hammered into the hardware cloth.
Wear leather work gloves to prevent the cut wire mesh from cutting your hands.
To create the framework, purchase the following.
Once you’ve cut the PVC pipe to the required set of lengths for the framework, attach the elbow fittings to the cut lengths of pipe (Chris chooses not to use glue, but you can if you desire).
Drill holes in the PVC uprights to attach wire suspenders for the cages (standard fencing wire is perfect).
Slide in two automotive oil drip pans below each cage to catch the poop.
We like this idea because it’s a low-cost, modular, and portable solution for indoor quail housing!
Get the idea here.
12. Low-Cost DIY Pallet Wood Quail Coop Idea with Egg Rollout Floor
Can you use pallet wood to build a quail coop? Yes, you can – if non-chemically treated. Video Eppo shows us a savvy way of repurposing pallet wood boards to make a neat quail coop. And it includes an egg rollout floor!
The trick with this design is ripping pallet boards lengthwise with a table saw to create ¾” x ¾” runners that will form the framework of the quail cage.
- The wood runners get nailed together using a nail gun.
- Hardware cloth gets stapled to the interior of the framework.
- Three doors on the cage make for easy access to the interior of the coop
- Sheet metal is cut and bent to create a poop tray.
With free pallets, a table saw, and a nail gun (which also serves as a stapler), you’ll save big on materials costs!
Get the idea here.
13. Small Predator-Proof DIY Quail Tractor Idea
A quail tractor is the best way to spare you from cleaning poop trays! A quail tractor is an outdoor movable coop that fertilizes the earth while nourishing your quail with natural elements. This small quail tractor design idea from Allpronouns is predator-proof and super-functional!
- A set of photographs gives you the idea for a 16’ x 2’ 1.5’ timber-framed box clad with boards and hardware cloth to create a quail tractor body.
- Long handles and two barrow wheels are attached to the box for easy lifting and moving.
- The floor of the quail tractor gets made using ¼” hardware cloth to stop predators from burrowing into the tractor.
- A large, enclosed dust bath section integral to the quail run section provides ample room for 16 quail.
- A hinged roof with polycarbonate panels allows easy access to the quail, eggs, and feeder.
A borderline-genius DIY PVC feed hopper and nipple watering system come in the idea. Neat!
Get the quail coop design idea here.
14. Two-tier DIY Quail Hutch on Wheels Plans
Does a sturdy indoor/outdoor mobile home for your quail sound good? Here’s a set of free DIY plans from Tealstonehomestead.com for a traditional two-tier quail hutch equipped with castor wheels, giving your birds the enjoyment of outdoor life when the weather is dry and warm, and the security of indoor living when rain and winter set in!
- The free plans include a materials list, tool list, and dimension diagrams with cut lengths.
The plans provide detailed step-by-step instructions with an accompanying video!
The result is a timber-frame, elevated, double-story quail coop on caster wheels equipped with PVC-coated hardware cloth floors and removable poop trays.
Simple and elegant!
Get the plans here.
15. Three-Tier Indoor Quail Coop DIY Plans
We’ve included this set of free plans because it provides excellent step-by-step instructions to DIY a proven three-tier indoor quail coop. Simplymadehomestead.com goes the extra mile and adds a video to the build master class!
You will need basic woodworking skills and tools to cut and join 2” x 2” lumber and not much else! Ok – wire cutters, hardware cloth, and a stapler too!
It’s a low-cost, effective, and aesthetically pleasing indoor quail hutch design. With poop trays!
16. Urban Backyard Quail Hutch and Run Idea
You may live in the city with a small garden patch, but that shouldn’t stop you from raising quail! Here’s a beautiful video from Her 86m2 of an urban quail hutch and quail run that clearly shows how easy it is to reap the rewards of quail bird husbandry.
The quail hutch is not a DIY project – it’s factory-produced but easy to replicate.
- For dimensions of a similar product, see this commercial quail hutch.
A quail run for a neat urban garden typically won’t need a wire mesh floor to protect against burrowing predators. It’s a tremendous bonus for the quail – unobstructed access to green earth!
- Interestingly, the quail hutch in the video has a ramp, and the quail use it!
- A sloped roof and easy-to-remove poop trays form part of the design.
Follow the design tips of our previous hutch ideas and scroll through these pics on Amazon for the overall dimensions of the quail hutch.
The adjoining quail run is straightforward to DIY – a square timber frame with hardware cloth walls and ceiling. And a hinged corrugated roof. Easy!
We love this urban playhouse for quail, and the video quality is superb!
17. DIY Large Quail Tractor Idea for Pastured Quail
Raising the plumpest, healthiest quail on the market requires pasturing. Pastured quail outperform battery quail in meat and egg quality. Hands down! If you’re considering marketing your quail products, watch how Wild Way Farm pastures quail in 6’-tall quail tractors that give the birds direct contact with the living soil!
The quail tractor design emulates an A-frame chicken coop and includes a nesting box into which the quail get herded for safe transportation come relocation time.
- Two chunky barrow wheels handle the off-road ride!
The cool thing about a large quail tractor, apart from the natural habitat it affords the quail, is how user-friendly they are for the quail farmer:
- Feed bill reduction as quail eats bugs from the grass.
- Walk in to gather eggs.
- No cleaning poop trays!
- Quail fertilize the soil directly!
Quail farming quote of the year: “I’ll never get used to chopping anything’s head off, with scissors!” – Clara Zander: owner/manager, Wild Way Farm.
Get the idea here.
Bonus – DIY Quail Coop Hacks
- You can use an angle grinder to cut hardware cloth.
- Protect eggs resting in the rollout tray with a lid made from hardware cloth or wood board.
- Use tarp material to help insulate the coop in winter.
- Lay hay on the mesh floor to help protect the quails’ feet.
- Pinecones make perfect quail habitat accessories.
- Electric fence wire around the periphery of an outdoor ground-level quail coop or quail tractor will keep predators at bay.
Conclusion – What’s Your Quail Coop DIY Coup?
We’re sure you’ll agree. Quail coops that house natural elements like branches, dirt, and grass boost quail health. All 17 of these free ideas and plans for DIY quail coops can accommodate natural outdoor features. And a dust bath!
You want happy, healthy quail, and we’re confident this comprehensive set of quail coop ideas will get you fired up for a DIY project that will change your life – a coop for quail, a coup for nature!
Quail Coop Ideas – References, Guides, and Works Cited