Little vs Red-chested Button-quail

To: Harvey Perkins <>, Birding-Aus Mail <>
Subject: Little vs Red-chested Button-quail
From: Lawrie Conole <>
Date: Wed, 04 Oct 2000 17:31:36 +1000
> impression of it in that time was of a plain grey-brown bird, the colour of
> old straw.

> I am assuming they were either Little or Red-chested. In my mind's eye it was
> neither as rufous coloured as most Littles nor as dark as most Red-chested as
> depicted in most Field Guides.

> Platelets were obvious under a number of bushes, being about 13-15 cm in
> diameter and often very close together, sometimes virtually contiguous. In
> some cases there were up to about 20 platelets under a single bush in an area
> of about 1.5 sq metres.

> (HANZAB makes no specific mention of platelets for either Little or
> Red-chested Button-quail - only in the accounts for Painted and
> Black-breasted are they mentioned.)

Hi Harvey

I recently submitted a paper to 'Emu' about Red-chested Button-quail in
northern Victoria - on (amongst other things) field ID.  Your birds sound a bit
like RCBQ to me - old straw is an apt description - not so dark as some field
guides suggest either.  And don't believe HANZAB every time - the RCBQ at
Gunbower Island in Victoria produced some of the greatest densities of
platelets I've ever seen, anywhere.  Again, strongly reminiscent of what you've

It's a bit hard to retro-ID birds for sure when the looks were all very
brief/partial, but I'd say RCBQ is most likely from what you've described.

Cheers -- Lawrie

L A W R I E   C O N O L E
3 Gezireh Street, Pascoe Vale South, Victoria 3044 AUSTRALIA.
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