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Partridges, quails, pheasants and allies

Grey partridge standing in short grass

Image: Chris Gomersall

Small, medium and large-sized gamebirds, from the tiny quail to the long-tailed, large-bodied pheasants, all with short, curved bills, small heads, rounded bodies and short legs. 

Most are social birds, often found in family groups, but in the pheasants the males have little to do with the family. Most are resident, but quails are long-distance migrants, spending the winter in Africa. 

There are many more species of quails and pheasants in Asia and North America.

Grey partridge

A medium-sized, plump gamebird with a distinctive orange face. Flies with whirring wings and occasional glides, showing a chestnut tail. It is strictly a ground bird, never likely to be found in pear ... More...

Grey partridge

Pheasant

A large, long-tailed gamebird. Males have rich chestnut, golden-brown and black markings on body and tail, with a dark green head and red face wattling. Females are mottled with paler brown and black.... More...

Pheasant

Quail

A small gamebird - the combination of its stocky body and long, pointed wings makes it quite distinctive. Its upperparts are brown, streaked and barred with buff, while its underparts are a warm buff... More...

Quail

Red-legged partridge

Larger than the grey partridge, it has a large white chin and throat patch, bordered with black. It has a greyish body with bold black flank stripes, and a chestnut-sided tail. It is an introduced spe... More...

Red-legged partridge