Quails are considered auspicious birds as their name an provides the homophone for 'peace'. Two quails can be read as shuang an, or 'double peace', and thus, these birds often appear as pairs on paintings, porcelains and textiles from as early as the Song dynasty.
Compare with pairs of quail boxes of this type: the first of white jade, illustrated by Ip Yee, Chinese Jade Carving, Hong Kong Museum of Art, 1983, no. 196; a pair carved from brownish-yellow jade, illustrated by James Watt, Chinese Jades from the Collection of the Seattle Art Museum, Washington, 1989, no. 73; and another white jade pair from the collections of T.Y. Chao and Alan and Simone Hartman, sold at Christie's Hong Kong, 30 November 2011, lot 3029.