How to Build an Incubator for Quail Eggs

Quail eggs can be incubated using some standard household items.
Quail eggs can be incubated using some standard household items. (Image: eggs of a female quail 2 image by Soloshenko Irina from

Quail eggs are very specific in their needs, most importantly the need for properly regulated temperatures. If you find abandoned eggs of any type, it's important to immediately move them to a place where you can keep them warm and protected. If you don't want to buy an incubator, make your own with some common household items.

Things You'll Need

  • 30-quart styrofoam ice chest with cover
  • Screwdriver
  • Pocket knife
  • Lamp building kit
  • Light bulb (120 volt, 25 watt)
  • Thermostat switch
  • Extension cord
  • Hook-up wire
  • Shavings/straw

Remove the lid of the styrofoam ice chest, but save it. Use the knife to pierce a hole in one side of the chest, 3 inches from the top. Put two more holes 3 inches from the bottom on the side facing you, and two holes 3 inches from the bottom on the other side. These holes are for the light and heat fixture and circulation, respectively.

Gather what you need from the lamp-building kit. Keep out the bulb, extension tube and wiring, and discard the rest. Put the extension tube through the top hole in the ice chest so that the light bulb end is inside the chest. Screw in the light bulb. This will provide warmth for the quail eggs.

Attach the thermostat to the side of your ice chest near where the eggs will sit. Attach one of the lamp's wires to the electric plug, and the other wire to the thermostat's opening. Run the thermostat's wire to the electric plug. If done correctly, this will result in the thermostat switching the light on and off to maintain a specific temperature.

Put hay, straw or shavings in the bottom of the ice chest. It is now ready to house your quail eggs.

Tips & Warnings

  • Eggs can hatch in 15 to 35 days, depending on the species of animal.
  • Eggs may not hatch, even if they're properly incubated.

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