Suicidal Button-quail Behaviour.

To: "birding-aus" <>
Subject: Suicidal Button-quail Behaviour.
From: "Del Richards" <>
Date: Sat, 3 Sep 2005 22:37:29 +1000
A number of observers commented on my experience with the Red-chested Button-quail a couple of weeks back. It has been recorded with at least two more members of the genus.
    Regarding Painted Button-quail, both Fiona Anderson and Carol Proberts have witnessed the "staggering" behavior and Carol related that she approached the bird only to have it run off.
    The other instances apply to the Chestnut-backed of the Top End and the Kimberley.
    Carol Helman relates to an instance several years ago north of Katharine NT when a bird was on the highway and being missed by passing roadtrains by ~50cm. Believing it to be injured she was a metre from the bird when it flushed!
    Guide Denise Goodfellow cites a number of ocassions when she has literally picked them up and put them in a safe area off the track.
    George Swann of Broome calls CBBQ's "rockers" as he has seen them rock their whole body backwards and forwards before taking a step. He has watched four birds take ten minutes to cross the Kalumbaru Road putting on this performance!?
    In retrospect perhaps this unexpected behavior may be better known if Button-quail were more easily seen.
Del. Richards, Fine Feather Tours, Mossman, NQ.
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