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Quail/Button Quail in Flight, Brisbane Hinterland

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Old Sunday 16th November 2008, 11:37   #1
Laurie Knight
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Quail/Button Quail in Flight, Brisbane Hinterland

I was out attempting to photograph the button quail at Lake Samsonvale this morning. While the Brown Quail are very co-operative in posing for the camera, most of the other quails and button quails are masters of camouflage who specialise in exploding from the ground just in front of you - making them almost impossible to photograph.
I managed to get a few photographs of blurs that are recognisable as quails/button quails and was interested in people's suggestions as to which species they might be.
Species that are "in range" in this area include the Brown Quail, King Quail, Stubble Quail, Painted Button Quail, Black-breasted Button Quail, Little Button Quail, Red-chested Button Quail and Red-backed Button Quail.

Regards, Laurie.
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Old Sunday 16th November 2008, 14:20   #2
njlarsen
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You probably know more about these than I do anyway, but I was surprised by how pale the last two looked. Red-chested Button-Quail seems to be the palest of all the contenders, so that would be my guess for this. The other three also seems to show Button-Quail, with again a guess to painted for the first? (going entirely by Pizzey and Knight for this).

Niels
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Old Sunday 16th November 2008, 16:35   #3
James Lowther
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again this is book-based theorising rather than experience-based but for the first pic the combination of pale buff coverts and dark flight feathers seems to rule out the true quails and the contrast between the coverts and the dark back would favour red-backed or maybe black-breasted button-quail (no flight illustration in pizzey and knight)?...

as for the rest...pass!
although having said that - i could believe 2&3 are brown quail
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Old Monday 17th November 2008, 01:58   #4
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I should have shared a little more information in my previous post: I have a strong suspicion that Black-breasted Buttonquail does not occur around lake Samsonvale. I visited Tom Tarrant who took me to the lake area in 2006 (where we did see brown quail), and Tom recommended me to go to Inskip Point later to see the Black-breasted Buttomquail. This species is unlikely to flush from grassy areas, is it likely to be seen among trees on sandy bottom and be quietly walking away from you among fallen branches when you see it.

King Quail/Blue-breasted Quail is really, really tiny, I saw it at Great Sandy just south of Inskip. It was in an area that was quite humid.

Laurie, if you know Tom, show him the pictures and see what he says.

I would buy that #2 and #3 could be brown quail. My reason for choosing Painted for the first image is that P&K shows rufous/brown coverts, paler grey greater coverts, and darker flight feathers on the drawing of a flying bird.

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Old Monday 17th November 2008, 02:54   #5
Dimitris
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2 and 3 Brown Quail for me too.

No going to touch the others though.

Cheers!

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Old Monday 17th November 2008, 05:08   #6
Laurie Knight
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Thanks, I've contacted some Aus ornithologists and received consistent feedback that the first bird is a Red-backed Buttonquail. The key diagnostic features are the relatively small size, dark back and relatively pale wing coverts. The second and third birds are larger and may either be Brown Quail or Painted Button Quail.

I've attached a picture of a Brown Quail in the process of landing on cut grass to illustrate the wing pattern.

Regards, Laurie.
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