Northern bobwhite quail (Colinus virginianus)

Bobwhite quail thrive in forested stands that have been thinned to allow sunlight to reach the forest floor and that have been burned frequently with prescribed fire. While quail will eat a wide variety of plant and animal matter, they primarily eat seeds.

North Carolina Wildlife Profiles – Northern Bobwhite Quail (N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission)
Most people know the Northern bobwhite by the name bobwhite quail, or just quail for short. Partridge is the old fashion name. Quail are related to turkeys and chickens, and to some people, they look like  a small, plump chicken.

Working With Wildlife: Bobwhite Quail (N.C. State Cooperative Extension)
A mixture of shrubs, including blackberry, and areas with grasses and forbs provides year round cover for bobwhite. Cover typically is the limiting component of habitat on most properties, so it must be emphasized in efforts to create and maintain quail habitat.

Birds of North Carolina: Northern Bobwhite (Bird Club of North Carolina)
The state’s only quail species has suffered the opposite fate of the Wild Turkey. Whereas Bobwhites were once one of the state’s most common birds, with observers often recording 30-50 on the 50-stop Breeding Bird Survey routes, the species has shown severe declines throughout its range since about 1980, owing presumably to an increase in predators and probably to loss of farmland and associated early succession habitat.

All About Birds – Northern Bobwhite (Cornell Lab of Ornithology)
Despite their sharp population decline, it’s still possible to find Northern Bobwhite in fields, rangelands, and open forests over much of their range. Their call is one of the easiest to learn of all bird sounds. The two sharp, whistled notes really do sound like “bob-white!”—and the call carries a long distance, so if bobwhite are around you will probably know it long before you see them.

Audubon Guide to North American Birds – Northern Bobwhite
During fall and winter, bobwhites live in coveys, averaging about a dozen birds. At night they roost on the ground in circles, tails pointed inward, heads pointed out.

Ecology and Management of the Northern Bobwhite (Mississippi State University Extension)
Understanding bobwhite life history and ecology provides the background for managing this bird. By understanding the various aspects of a bowhite’s life and seasonal habitat needs, it is easier to understand how to manage bobwhite habitat.

Forest Management for Northern Bobwhite Quail (webinar)
Steve Chapman, Forestry Coordinator for the National Bobwhite Conservation Initiative, discusses pine forest management opportunities and practices that can not only help to bring back the bobwhite but also can have an impact on slowing the decline of those numerous songbird, pollinator and other wildlife species.

Bobwhite Basics (National Bobwhite Conservation Initiative)
Everyone would like to see more bobwhites on their property. Accomplishing that objective takes a lot more work and effort than many folks imagine. To improve quail populations on your lands it is important to recognize and identify the cover types and structure where you’re managing your quail.

Bobwhites on the Brink (video) (National Bobwhite Conservation Initiative)
A five-part series “Bobwhites on the Brink.” For several months, NBCI worked with a syndicated public TV show, This American Land, to examine the “big picture” of the bobwhite decline in settings that once produced copious quantities of quail and no longer do – forests, row crop farming and cattle grazing. For examples of each we visited South Carolina (forestry), Texas and Kentucky (livestock grazing), and Kansas (row crop agriculture) to see how these activities have changed over the decades and how public and private landowners, and public policy makers can make room for bobwhites and other grassland birds once again.

The Comprehensive Guide to Creating, Improving and Managing Bobwhite Habitat (National Bobwhite Conservation Initiative)
An illustrated guide provides the latest approaches and techniques to create, improve and manage habitat for wild bobwhites in grassland, rangeland, pastureland, southern pine forest, oak and mixed woodland and reclaimed mineland settings from experts around the range. Must be downloaded for viewing.

Why Have Quail Declined? (video) (Georgia Department of Natural Resources)

Bobwhite Almanac, State of the Bobwhite 2018 (National Bobwhite Conservation Initiative)
An annual publication of the National Bobwhite Conservation Initiative (NBCI) to provide a range-wide snapshot of population, hunting and conservation status of the northern bobwhite, as well as looks at efforts underway to reverse the bobwhite decline.

Northern Bobwhite Quail: Restoring a Species (multimedia story) (U.S. Department of Agricultre farmers.gov)
In the last 50 years, populations of the northern bobwhite quail have decreased by 85 percent in the United States. Loss, degradation and fragmentation of habitat on a continental scale has largely silenced the iconic species across rural America.

Bobwhite Quail (Virginia Department of Forestry)
Quail management is essentially the management of natural plant succession, that series of vegetative stages that occur over time if there is no intervention by man or nature. The greatest abundance of quail have always been found on lands in the early stages of succession, those recently tilled, burned, or cut over, and allowed to recover naturally. The concept of relying on and managing natural vegetation for quail is not new, only somewhat forgotten.