The Quail and Its Language, Daily Racing Form, 1919-10-30


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THE QUAIL AND ITS LANGUAGE The valley quails peculiar colors of slate blue, gray, white and cinnamon and the long, jaunty plume of jet hanging forward over his bill are now too generally known to need special .description here. In size he is a little smaller than Bob White and quite Inferior to Bob in favor, though still a good bird, except when in the hands of a cook whose sole knowledge of quail is the cabalistic phrase, "Quail on toast." In such hands the combination is almost as good as chip on pasteboard. Few birds hnve so many different notes as the valley quail, and in few do pitch, tone and accent vary so much, even with the same individual. The common call Is a flute-like, penetrating "o-hi-o," rapidly repeated four or five times, but varied often, so that it sounds like "ko-loi-o." Again, the accent is shifted until it sounds like "tuck-a-hoe," and sometimes the accent is so heavy on the second syllable that it becomes "k-woick," nnd often the last "uh" is dropped entirely and only a low "k-woick" is heard. During hatching time the male, perched upon a busii near the nest, sends forth at Intervals of a minute or two a low "wah" full of deep content, and ofter during this time, when on the ground or moving about, lie gives a metallic-toned "wheeooo" or "teeooo," often sounded several times In quick succession, and sometimes in a husky tone. The alarm call is a sharp "whit, whit, whit," changing often into a low, muffled "wook, wook, wook," while the birds are on the ground, but when they rise a sharp, clear "chirp, chirp, chirp" is the only sound heard, and generally from the birds started singly.

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Local Identifier: drf1919103001_8_8
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