Quail Question

Kernhuntr

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 14, 2001
Messages
803
Reaction score
0
A buddy and myself were at Tejon in December and saw the strangest thing. It was cold and getting very fogey when I saw a covery of quail on top of a knoll. At first I couldn't figure out what was different about them, then it dawned on me, they were ALL male. Probably 20 to 25 birds and not one female in the bunch....and none that we could see in the area.

Have any of you ever seen an all male covey before, or ever heard of one? Or any explaination as to why there might be one?

Kernhuntr
 



songdog

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 5, 2001
Messages
2,054
Reaction score
0
My non biologist opinion would be that it was just coincidence.  Just an opinion though.  

I know that this time of year they start pairing up so you rarely run into groups of birds like you do during hunting season.  Maybe the bachelor group up is a precursor to it?
 

Frank

Forever Hunting
Joined
Jan 29, 2002
Messages
1,951
Reaction score
5
I'm shocked and have never heard of
or seen such a thing.  That is truly amazing, especially since you saw them in December when they are "normally" still coveyed up (with "females") at that time of year.

I wonder what Fish & Game would have to say on that?
 

Mojave

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 25, 2001
Messages
232
Reaction score
0
I can't recollect ever having seen quite so many birds in an all-male covey in December. I'll look, tonight, in some of my quail research and management material, and see if this subject is noted. I don't believe in coincidence, when trying to understand unusual animal behavior. Don't know if they have any bearing, but two facts spring to mind which may relate to what you saw: 1. Population studies of Cal Quail almost always show a preponderance of males in any given sample. 2. In breeding season, unpaired bachelor quail often group together as "babysitters", taking care of orphaned hatchlings.
 

Kernhuntr

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 14, 2001
Messages
803
Reaction score
0
Mojave,

In talking to people and the posts here, that is the reasonable explaintion I've heard yet. Thanks.

And no we were not drinking after hunting, it was an amazing sight.

Kernhuntr
 

Frank

Forever Hunting
Joined
Jan 29, 2002
Messages
1,951
Reaction score
5
OK, guess I have to be the one to ask this question and since no one else is, I'm "forced" to....

Kernhuntr... Where they Valley or Moutain quail?  

Frank
 

rlwright

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 8, 2002
Messages
562
Reaction score
0
I think Frank hit the nail on the head, after all it was getting foggy and Tejon is mtn. quail area. December is to early for bachelor coveys, that would mean there were hens by thereselves. It's to cold in Tejon in December for quail to survive alone.

I was varmit hunting last weekend off of MT. Emma road, and I jumped a covey of quail that was mixed, which means they're still coveyed at least in that area. Ironically, I went all season not finding any thing up there this year.
 

Kernhuntr

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 14, 2001
Messages
803
Reaction score
0
I didn't even think to tell you that....they were valley not mountian.

Kernhuntr
 

songdog

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 5, 2001
Messages
2,054
Reaction score
0
It's possible that they all did something to tick off the female quail... Happens to us, why can't it happen to them too?
 

Kernhuntr

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 14, 2001
Messages
803
Reaction score
0
Good possibility, happens to me starting about mid Aug. and runs through about this time of the year, every year for the last 20 or so years..:muha:

Kernhuntr
 

paulc

Well-known member
Joined
May 3, 2001
Messages
2,398
Reaction score
0
i guess only me and dazco have our mind in the gutter..
 

Frank

Forever Hunting
Joined
Jan 29, 2002
Messages
1,951
Reaction score
5
rlwright,

How was your varmint hunt?  Did you call anything in? Reason I ask is, figure it would be getting harder this time of year.

Frank  
 

rlwright

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 8, 2002
Messages
562
Reaction score
0
I saw no varmits, not even a rabbit. Just Quail. I have yet to call in a coyote, maybe I'll get one while turkey hunting.
 

Frank

Forever Hunting
Joined
Jan 29, 2002
Messages
1,951
Reaction score
5
Thanks rlwright,

You & Hook (another thread) both had bad luck the last few days and is making me wonder if I should even try this weekend?  

Sounds like the dening season has them holed up pretty good?!

Frank
 

Mojave

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 25, 2001
Messages
232
Reaction score
0
Glanced through about 15 reference books and articles last night, and found nothing that would explain what you saw. Maybe this is a new trend that will be called "The Kernhuntr Phenomena". The quail out here on "Bobcat Flats" are definitely still coveyed up, but are starting to show some signs of pre-breeding agression. The resident doves are already pairing up and building nests! Hope we don't have a late hard freeze.
 

Kernhuntr

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 14, 2001
Messages
803
Reaction score
0
Thanks for all the replies. I know one thing...I'm thankful that I was not the only witness to this, otherwise they'd be coming to get me in the "Special Jeep" :confused-yellow:

Kernhuntr

(Edited by Kernhuntr at 12:44 pm on Mar. 13, 2002)
 

Swiss Lad

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 4, 2001
Messages
58
Reaction score
0
While hunting pheasants in Iowa the all male phenomena has been witnessed several times.  One group covered a rather large corn pile.  I haven't a factual reason but other than coincidence, maybe there is a good reason for separation at that time.  Makes it too easy during the season.:noddin-yes:
 


Top Bottom