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Northern Bobwhite
Northern Bobwhite

Photos - Above © John White

Left © Tony Coomer, Occoquan Bay National Wildlife Refuge, Woodbridge, VA

Text by Michelle Fortunato

Northern Bobwhite
Colinus virginianus

The Northern Bobwhite is a wonderful bird. A year-round resident of the eastern United States and Mexico, it is an important game bird with a bubbly personality exhibited by its loud call.

The Northern Bobwhite is a wild animal and would most likely not be a good pet.

Northern Bobwhites are medium-sized quail with a small round head and round body, and a very short tail. They are not quite a foot in length and their wingspan is usually 14 – 16 inches. They are colored red and brown, with juveniles slightly duller than adults.

These amazing birds feast on a variety of delicious foods, including seeds, insects, berries, acorns, buds, roots, and snails.

They often live in semi-open habitats such as roadside ditches and farmland.

Nesting season is from May to September. Unfortunately, only about one out of every four birds hatches due to the presence of egg-eating predators.

Many quail also die due to extreme heat and inadequate shelter.

The Northern Bobwhite is a spectacular animal. Keep your eyes out and you just might be lucky enough to see one!