Red-backed Button-quail

To: Robyn H <>
Subject: Red-backed Button-quail
From: Jill Dening <>
Date: Mon, 05 Sep 2011 09:30:57 +1000

Interesting that you made your observation, because I, also, recently observed similar ground markings in treed vegetation behind the beach on the north shore of Noosa (SEQ). The habitat is similar to that at Inskip Point (SEQ). I have seen nothing but roundish scratchings - no quail, no calls arousing suspicion. I went back there recently to check, but saw nothing more than I saw initially. To me they don't look exactly like the platelets of BBBQ, but I still wonder who made them. They are not the kind of scratchings made at random by such as brush turkeys. I just didn't know what to make of them.



Jill Dening
Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia

26° 51' 41"S  152° 56' 00"E

On 4/09/2011 8:56 PM, Robyn H wrote:
Thanks for your response, Chris.

The site is the Maroochy Wetlands Sanctuary at Bli Bli on the Sunshine

There are not many platelets in the area where I noticed them, but I
must admit I did not look further. I did not take notice at first as the
crabs which burrow there clear an area around the burrow, and initially,
I assumed they were just crab clearances. But they are different, and
there is no burrow in the clearing. In fact, it was seeing the platelets
which made me realize the calls were the RBBQ and I came home and
checked the call on the computer. There could well be many other
platelets amongst the Mangrove Ferns which is more where the calls were
coming from, but the ground is not visible, and probably too wet for
platelets. The two areas are just either side of the boardwalk.

There are Northern Brown Bandicoot in the area and they are very active
at present, but they do not leave neat circular traces.

The Swamp Rat also utilises the area and it is not like any of the
traces I have ever seen for them.

Fawn-footed Melomys and Yellow-footed Antechinus are in other areas, but
there is no reason they would not be here also, and Bush Rats are in
another area I am aware of. I think it is too damp for them.

Would be happy to hear further comments.

Thanks kindly

Robyn H

-----Original Message----- From: Chris
Sent: Sunday, September 04, 2011 5:36 PM
To: Robyn H
Subject: Re: [Birding-Aus] Red-backed Button-quail

Hi Robyn,

Where is this reserve? RBBQ have never been observed making platelets,
but there is anecdotal evidence they might.

Another possibility for the clearings in the Allocasuarina needles is a
small mammal looking for insects. Button-quail tend to make many
platelets in a small area, often so close they touch at the edges. Were
there lots together or only a few scattered ones?

Chris Sanderson

Sent from my iPhone

On 02/09/2011, at 17:35, "Robyn H" <> wrote:

Does anyone know much about Red-backed Button-quails?

Do they leave platelets?

I suspect there is one (or more) currently at the wetlands in SEQ
where I volunteer, and we have sighted them there in the past –
probably 8 to 10 years ago – but I am now judging on a few calls and a
few platelets. The habitat does not seem suitable to me. It is the
landwards side of mangroves where there is Mangrove fern, and the
platelets are in an area where there are Allocasuarina needles on the
ground, but not grass except for maybe a little arrow grass and some
Phragmites australis. It is very near to where they were sighted by at
least three people in the past.

Would appreciate any first-hand knowledge.

Thanks kindly

Robyn H


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