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The original item was published from 7/18/2023 7:39:00 PM to 7/19/2023 2:30:13 PM.

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General News

Posted on: July 18, 2023

[ARCHIVED] City asks community opinions about keeping domestic ducks, quail

A graphic with a photo of a duck (left) and a quail (right) with the city logo in the center.

7/18/2023 7:30 PM UPDATE:

Neighbors- Due to an issue with the formatting of this survey, we are going to have to temporarily close it, fix the issue, and then reopen it. We will add a new message when the survey is re-opened.

The issue is for the questions listing both "Ducks" and "Quail" as an option, those were intended to allow neighbors to choose one, or both, as a an option. We sincerely apologize for this issue.


BATTLE CREEK, Mich. — The city’s Planning Division is seeking input from neighbors as to what they think about adding both domestic ducks and quail to the list of allowable animals within city limits.

As Planning staff draft an ordinance to introduce to the City Commission, they want to survey the community to get input on what neighbors think about the possibility of allowing ducks and/or quail in the city.

The survey will take neighbors about three to four minutes to complete. Neighbors can find the duck and quail survey online here directly A link to the survey will also be available on our website home page, at, in City Spotlights.

This survey is in conjunction with another, current survey regarding beekeeping in the city. For reference, the beekeeping survey can still be found here directly, as well as on our website.

Planning staff are tentatively scheduling the introduction of this ordinance, encompassing ducks, quail, and beekeeping, for the Aug. 15 City Commission meeting, with final consideration of the ordinance at the Sept. 5 City Commission meeting. Neighbors will have the opportunity to share public comments on the ordinance at both meetings.

If you would like to share additional information about keeping ducks and/or quail, as well as beekeeping, in the city with Planning, or have any questions about the process, please call 269-966-3311 or email Planning Supervisor Darcy Schmitt at


Brief background on ducks: The most common type of duck kept for domestic purposes is the Pekin duck, with a lifespan between 5-12 years. The adult female duck can weigh up to nine pounds and will produce four to five eggs per week that are larger than a typical jumbo chicken egg. They need a protected space to wander during the day, that also includes a shallow swimming pool for swimming and grooming. Generally, ducks are louder than chickens and female ducks are louder than male ducks.

Brief background on quail: Quail are small birds weighing less than a half-pound as adults, with a lifespan of three to five years in the wild. A female quail lays between 150-300 small eggs per year. They communicate through clucks, grunts, and when they see a predator, they produce a loud, high-pitch sound. Quail can fly short distances, but they spend most of their time on the ground.

More detailed information on keeping ducks and quail: If you are not familiar with the generally accepted agricultural and management practices of keeping ducks and/or quail, and would like to learn more about it, the following link provides valuable and reliable information from Michigan’s 2023 Generally Accepted Agricultural and Management Practices for the Care of Farm Animals, provided by the Michigan Commission of Agriculture and Rural Development. (Both birds can be found under the “Gamebirds” section.)

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