|Gambel's Quail (Callipepla gambelii)|
DESCRIPTION: L=11" (28cm). Sexes different. Males and females both are grayish, with chestnut sides (filled with white streaks), and a feather plume out of crown. Males have rust-colored crown and black forehead, throat and belly patch.
CALL: Has two main calls: 1) a single "qua-el" and 2) a "chi-ca-go-go."
NATURAL HISTORY: Feed on seeds mostly, but also plant shoots, fruit, and insects. Most active in morning and late afternoon (crepuscular), avoiding hot temperatures and raptor predation during the middle of the day. Lives in large groups called coveys of 20-40 individuals or even more outside of the breeding season. They spend most of their foraging time on the ground, but roost in trees or large shrubs. When hot, Gambel's Quail will dissipate heat by rapidly vibrating the floor of their mouth (gular fluttering) to facilitate evaporative cooling.