Chestnut-backed Button Quail. Wyndham WA

To: John <>
Subject: Chestnut-backed Button Quail. Wyndham WA
From: Ian May <>
Date: Fri, 26 Apr 2002 12:45:31 +0930
g'Day John

Re: Jacks 700th!   Chestnut-backed Button Quail.

While residing at Wyndham WA from 1993, we occasionally observed CBBQ at one
location close to the town, about 1 km past the hospital and bus car park along
the Five Rivers lookout road.   The spot is about 20 metres north of the
"Bastion Range entrance sign" at the beginning of the slope, just north of a
dirt track turning off to the east.  Habitat is monsoon eucalyptus forest on
rocky slope with understory of triodia and small shrubs near the base of the

Late in the wet season of 1999, from February to April, we saw CBBQ there
regularly for over a month.  The time was usually about an hour after sunrise
although the site is still in shadow.  From about 50 metres away when walking
down the hill, we would hear a soft but deep sort of metallic "zoohm zoohm
zoohm" calling from the understory on the west side of the road.   If one
stopped and waited, a female Chestnut-backed Button Quail would often walk out
of the triodia and low shrubs with its head erect and walk across the bitumen
road in full view.   The male I  suspected was probably nearby attending a nest
but we only ever saw it occasionally.

CBBQ were there in other years too but our visits were less regular then.
Local authorities carry out hazard reduction burns each year usually in April,
and that puts an end to quail sightings there until the following wet season.

This is also good location for Northern Rosellas which frequent the roadside
about 1 kilometre further up the hill.

All the best and good luck with Jacks 700th.


Ian and Pat May
Adelaide, South Australia
0409 474 575

John wrote:

> On 1 July 2002 I will retire and my first project will be to help my 78
> year old father (Jack) to see his 700th bird in Australia.  He has only 7
> to go and to suggest that he is keen to get there is something of an
> understatement.

> I am short, however, of reliable site specific information for the
> following species:
> Pictorella Mannikin
> Red-chested Button-quail (we have missed them in the spots where I used to
> find them)
> Chestnut-backed Button-quail

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