Posts Tagged: quail

Female Northern BobWhite

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The Female Northern BobWhite is seen (at least for me) even more seldom that the male. The Northern Bobwhite nests on the ground. The male and female work together for about five days to weave grass and weeds which camouflage their nest. The Female can lay as many as 28 eggs! That’s a lot of Baby Bobwhites to keep warm and feed. I photographed this Female under a Palm tree in Florida. Nesting on the ground seems risky anywhere but especially in Florida with all the predatory animals around. Owls, Snakes, Hawks, Raccoons and Skunks all prey on the adults and their young!


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Male Gambel's Quail running along ground (Sandra Calderbank, sandra calderbank)

These New World Quail have quickly become some of my favorite birds to observe and photograph.  I photographed this Male Gambel’s Quail while visiting Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge this winter.  They tend to travel as a group, running on the ground.  While I was observing them, they seem to have a large male who “herds” and directs the rest of the group to food and away from any sensed danger.  The covey seem to eat and carry out their business while the “Look out  Male” stands guard.  He sends a warning call when danger approaches, such as a bird of prey overhead, and the flock scurries for cover.  They are fascinating and beautiful and I may be completely misinterpreting their behavior but it’s fun to presume and wonder.