|Gambel's Quail-male; he is territorial and watching out for his partner and little ones|
|The female Gambel's Quail carefully takes the little ones to safety while the male keeps an eye out for Cooper's Hawks|
|This male Scaled Quail is looking for love from within his territory|
|These two birds feed safely under the vegetation out of hawk sight|
|the male Montezuma Quail sits completely still on a rock watching me watching him; there we scream inside of our heads with excitement over our discovery! YES! But we barely breath while looking at the bird:)|
The good thing is that these birds are often times vocal and have an eerie martian call. Most of the time they are heard nearby but never seen. Over the years, I have played games with these birds as they have played games with me. Like the Flammulated Owl(in a later post), it sometimes takes a team to triangulate their positions. The good part is that they will freeze hoping you won't see them. If you get great views of this bird, consider yourself blessed by the bird gods.
|The female tries to hide from me. My team mate signals with his hand that the female is exposed! It took two of us to triangulate her position before she gave up and flew off.|
|The California Quail, as seen in Pacific Northwest, feed in a large covey|
The OTHER quail is known as the Elegant Quail. It's a beauty and a common bird for Mexico. Many years ago, one was recorded in the town of Douglas. Many believe it was an exotic bird released from a cage. And yet the possibility is that this one bird strayed quite a ways outside of its northern most range and got mixed up with a covey of Gambel's Quail. Quail don't migrate or fly long distances outside of their ranges so for one to show up in Arizona is suspicious. Either way, one was recorded in this state.
|The Gould's Wild Turkey of the Santa Rita Lodge in Madera Canyon put on a show for us. This tom is looking for a lady!|
Wild Turkeys were once almost hunted to extinction in North America. Today, thanks to conservation efforts, their numbers are healthy and growing. In Arizona, there are two subspecies of Wild Turkey, the Merriam's(common to most states) and the Gould's(common for Southern Arizona, New Mexico and Northern Mexico). If you're a bird nerd like me, you'd want to see the differences between the subspecies. Most people wouldn't care because a turkey is a turkey. But to find this Merriam's subspecies, we went to the North Rim of the Grand Canyon. To find the Gould's Wild Turkey of Southern Arizona, you'll need to head to the foothills on up into the forests of the sky islands. Further south towards the border, they can be found along riparian corridors.
|Chukar on Antelope Island near Salt Lake City, Utah|
|a wild Indian Peafowl at a park in Orange County, CA|
Indian Peafowl are not countable. In California, they are breeding. But in Arizona, they are considered escapees.
|a Northern Bobwhite in Wisconsin|
|Similar to the Masked Bobwhite, this is another subspecies of Northern Bobwhite in Chiapas, Mexico|
|Greater Sage-Grouse in the Pacific Northwest|
|Photo not mine. This is from Tucson Daily Photo|