Saturday, July 16, 2011

California Quail & Gambel's Quail - Western Birds

A California Quail, Crystal Cove State Park, Newport Beach, CA; 6/14/2011.
Like the Cal. Towhee (yesterday's post), the California Quail (Above) were also abundant in Crystal Cove State Park. When I saw my first few quails in this park, I thought they were Gambel's Quails, which I saw years ealier in Arizona. Upon researching western quails, I found that Gambel's and California Quails' range do not overlap. California Quails are found along the the Pacific coast north from Washington to south into the Baja Peninsula. Their ranges extend east into southwest Idaho, Nevada, and north Utah. Gambel's Quails are are found in the interior south California, southern Utah, into New Mexico and Mexico. 
A pair of california Quail, Crystal Cove State Park, CA; 6/13/2011.
Male California Quail (Above) are mostly gray with a black face and throat outlined by white stripes along its cheek, throat and forehead, like a headband. They sport a long black plume extending off the forehead and a dark brown crown. Their flanks are dark brown with white streaks and their nape and belly is scaled with brown and white marks. Females (Above) do not have the black face are as long a plume.

As I was stalking a flycatcher in Crysal Cove State Park, I suddenly heard the very loud call of the California Quail. It was sitting in a bush just below me. I was standing there for several minutes and never noticed it until it made its sound. 6/16/2011.

A Gambel's Quail, Botanical Garden, Phoenix, AZ; 12/27/2006.
Gambel's Quails (Above and Below) are very similar to California Quail with its overall appearance, but its crown is more reddish, and its belly is light tan without the scaling.
A pair of Gambel's Quail at the Phoenix Botanical Garden; 12/27/2006.

Sunset/ Moonrise of the Day
Actually not a sunset, but a moonrise, Wyoming,; 7/6/2006.


~Val said...

Love that top quail photo. Tack sharp!

Chesney said...

Oh wow, beautiful quail...I am always fascinated by these guys and how many different types their are. I love the 3rd image up from the bottom...his colors and details really shine through! BEAUTIFUL moon rise! :)