Unlike other bird species, which can fly, quails prefer to live on the ground where they eat, rest, nest and socialize. They roost in shrubs, tall grass or bushes to protect them from predators. During the day, they are on the lookout for prey and may run at high speeds to escape danger. Some quail have bony heel spurs that help them defend themselves against predators.
Wild quails often form coveys of up to 75 birds and select the same roosting spot at night. In winter, they move from mountainous areas with high woodlands to lower areas with more shrubs for shelter. When quail are not roosting, they seek shade from the sun and huddle together for warmth and protection.
Quail don't require as much sleep as other animals because they can enter a state called "torpor," which is like hibernating for warm-blooded animals. When in torpor, a quail's body temperature drops and its metabolic rate slows down so it can survive on very little food or water for long periods of time.
While you're raising quail, be sure to provide them with ample space to roam and roam free! This promotes their physical and mental well-being and allows them to engage in natural behaviors such as dust bathing and perching. Also, make sure your quail enclosure is dark at night. Too much light suppresses the quails' egg-laying mechanism, so you want to block any extra light entering the cage at night.