Game Birds


Game birds are those birds that historically were wild game or decorative fowl that are now raised commercially for their meat or for egg production; some quail, pheasant and grouse species are raised as "flight-ready" birds for release in hunting preserves. Game birds may include guinea fowl, partridges, peacocks, pheasants, pigeons and doves, quail or squab (a young pigeon), swans, wild turkeys and some ducks, such as mallards or wood ducks. Of these species, only pigeon, quail, squab and wild turkey are native American species. Game birds are also raised for exhibit or for hobby purposes.  Game Birds




  • Avian Influenza, USDA - Provides fact sheets, news releases, links and guidelines.
  • Avian Influenza Info - This Web site provides up-to-date information about the concerns related to avian influenza.
  • Bobwhite Quail Production, Agricultural Alternatives, Penn State University, 2002 - Includes two sample budgets that summarize costs and returns for producing quail to sell for flight birds and for meat birds.
  • Feeding Game Birds, Mississippi State University Extension Service, 2003 - Explains how game birds raised for meat production are fed differently than birds saved for egg production or breeding.
  • Gamebirds, OMAFRA, Ontario, Canada, 2007.
  • Game Bird Raising and Hunting Enterprise Budget, Kansas Rural Center, Sustainable Agriculture Management Guide, 2003.
  • How to Begin and Survive a Commercial Gamebird Farm, Leland Hayes.  
  • Illinois Specialty Farm Products, College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign - This research project was developed in collaboration with the Illinois Institute for Rural Affairs at Western Illinois University. The Illinois Council on Food and Agricultural Research is funding this project as part of its Special Research Initiative on Rural Community Development. List of Internet sites dealing with game bird production, including cost-production budgets, avian influenza and other information, and issue updates from a range of state extension services.
  • Issues: Shooting Preserves, Hunting and Conservation Issues/Gamebird Shooting Preserves, USDA - A publication that discusses the ethics and recreational impact of preserve hunting for upland game birds. This publication includes a breakdown of the economic benefits for owners, operators and the community, as well as overall habitat improvement and benefits for non-game species.
  • Managing Game Birds, Michigan State University Extension, 2000 - This publication provides complete feed ration suggestions in addition to other management information.
  • Pheasant Production, Penn State University, 2004 - This free downloadable or for-purchase print publication covers the economics, problems and considerations inherent in full and part-time pheasant farming. This six-page publication covers pheasant marketing, getting started, hatching and rearing young birds and disease problems, and includes sample budgets and references for more information.
  • Raising Bobwhite Quail for Commercial Use, Mississippi State University Extension, 2001 - Publication on production and management with some marketing information included for those wishing to raise game birds for hunting preserves, for the restaurant market or for wildlife release.
  • Raising Game Birds, University of California, Davis, 2007.
  • That Quail Place - A Web site created for individuals interested in raising quail and game birds. The site contains information about coturnix quail, bobwhite quail, pharaoh quail, button quail, pheasant, partridge and other game birds. There is information regarding the general care, breeding, incubating, brooding and raising of various species. An area also is provided for those interested in purchasing supplies, including equipment used for raising and breeding quail; live birds; hatching eggs; and literature.
  • Upland Journal - Online magazine where bird hunters can share knowledge and gain information.