“And it came to pass, that at even the quails came up, and covered the camp: and in the morning the dew lay round about the host.” (Exodus 16:13 KJV)
The Odontophoridae is made up of the New World Quail. This includes 2 Partridges, 3 Wood Partridges, 10 Quails, 4 Bobwhites, and 15 Wood Quail. [and a Partridge in a pear tree! Oops! Wrong article. :0) ]
These are not the Old World Quails that rained down on the Israelites.
“The New World quails or Odontophoridae are small birds only distantly related to the Old World quail, but named for their similar appearance and habits. The American species are in their own family Odontophoridae, whereas Old World quail are in the pheasant family Phasianidae. The family ranges from Canada through to southern Brazil, and two species, the California quail and the bobwhite quail, have been successfully introduced to New Zealand. The stone partridge and Nahan’s partridge, both found in Africa, seem to belong to the family. Species are found across a variety of habitats from tropical rainforest to deserts, although few species are capable of surviving at very low temperatures. Thirty-four species are placed in ten genera.” (Wikipedia)
New World quail are generally short-winged, -necked and -tailed (although the genus Dendrortyx is long-tailed). The bills are short, slightly curved and serrated. The legs are short and powerful, and lack the spurs of many Old World galliformes. Although they are capable of short bursts of strong flight New World quails prefer to walk, and will run from danger (or hide), taking off explosively only as a last resort. Plumage varies from dull to spectacular, and many species have ornamental crests or plumes on the head. There is moderate sexual dichromism in plumage, with males having brighter plumage.
The New World quails are shy diurnal birds and generally live on the ground; even the tree quails which roost in high trees generally feed mainly on the ground. They are generalists with regards to their diet, taking insects, seeds, vegetation and tubers. Desert species in particular consume a lot of seeds.
Northern bobwhite and California quail are popular gamebirds, with many taken by hunters, but these species have also had their ranges increased to meet hunting demand and are not threatened. They are also artificially stocked. Some species are threatened by human activity, such as the bearded tree quail of Mexico, which is threatened by habitat loss and illegal hunting.
“The people asked, and he brought quails, and satisfied them with the bread of heaven.” (Psalms 105:40 KJV)
“Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, That this night, before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice.” (Matthew 26:34 KJV)
Happy New Year!!
“The Galliformes Order is the next order taxonomically. “The Galliformesare an order of heavy-bodied ground-feeding birds that includes turkey, grouse, chicken, New World quail and Old World quail, ptarmigan, partridge, pheasant, junglefowl and the Cracidae. The name derives from “gallus”, Latin for “cock” or “rooster”. Common names are gamefowl or gamebirds, landfowl, gallinaceous birds, or galliforms. “Wildfowl” or just “fowl” are also often used for the Galliformes, but usually these terms also refer to waterfowl (Anseriformes), [which we just finished] and occasionally to other commonly hunted birds. This group has about 299 species, one or more of which are found in essentially every part of the world’s continents (except for the innermost deserts and perpetual ice). They are rarer on islands, and in contrast to the closely related waterfowl, are essentially absent from oceanic islands—unless introduced there by humans. Several species have been domesticated during their long and extensive relationships with humans.”
“As the partridge sitteth on eggs, and hatcheth them not; so he that getteth riches, and not by right, shall leave them in the midst of his days, and at his end shall be a fool.” (Jeremiah 17:11 KJV)
“This order contains five families: Phasianidae (including chicken, quail, partridges, pheasants, turkeys, peafowl and grouse), Odontophoridae (New World quails), Numididae (guineafowl), Cracidae (including chachalacas and curassows), and Megapodiidae (incubator birds like mallee fowl and brush-turkeys). They are important as seed dispersers and predators in the ecosystems they inhabit, and are often reared as game birds by humans for their meat and eggs and for recreational hunting. Many gallinaceous species are skilled runners and escape predators by running rather than flying. Males of most species are more colorful than the females. Males often have elaborate courtship behaviors that include strutting, fluffing of tail or head feathers, and vocal sounds. They are mainly nonmigratory.” (Wikipedia with editing)
Peacock at Magnolia Plantation by Dan
“Gavest thou the goodly wings unto the peacocks? or wings and feathers unto the ostrich?” (Job 39:13)
Here are a few birds from each of the five families:
“The people asked, and he brought quails, and satisfied them with the bread of heaven.” (Psalms 105:40 KJV)
Many of these birds are mentioned in the Bible, so they are also listed in our Birds of the Bible articles. Over the following Sunday, these families will be presented in smaller articles with the slideshows as in the previous articles.
The Wild Turkey From Col. Fred. Kaempfer. Copyrighted by Nature Study Pub. Co., 1897, Chicago.
THE WILD TURKEY.
T has been observed that when the Turkey makes its appearance on table all conversation should for the moment be suspended. That it is eaten in silence on some occasions may be inferred from the following anecdote: A certain judge of Avignon, famous for his love of the glorious bird, which the American people have wisely selected for the celebration of Thanksgiving Day, said to a friend: “We have just been dining on a superb Turkey. It was excellent. Stuffed with truffles to the very throat—tender, delicate, filled with perfume! We left nothing but the bones!” “How many were there of you?” asked his friend. “Two,” replied the judge, “the Turkey—and myself!” The reason, no doubt, why this brilliant bird, which so much resembles the domestic Turkey, is now almost extinct. It was formerly a resident of New England, and is still found to some extent as far north-west as the Missouri River and south-west as Texas. In Ohio it was formerly an abundant resident. Dr. Kirtland (1850) mentions the time when Wild Turkeys were more common than tame ones are now.
The nests of this bird are very difficult to discover, as they are made on the ground, midst tall, thick weeds or tangled briars. The female will not leave the nest until almost trodden upon. It is stated that when the eggs are once touched, she will abandon her nest.
The Turkey became known to Europeans almost immediately upon the discovery of America by the Spaniards in 1518, and it is probable that it is distinctively an American bird. In its wild state, its plumage, as in the case of the Honduras Turkey, grows more lustrous and magnificent as the family extends southward.
The “Gobblers,” as the males are called, associate in parties of ten to one hundred, seeking their food apart from the females, which wander singly with their young or in troops with other hens and their families, sometimes to the number of seventy or eighty. They travel on foot, unless disturbed by the hunter or a river compels them to take wing. It is said that when about to cross a river, they select a high eminence from which to start, that their flight may be more sure, and in such a position they sometimes remain for a day or more, as if in consultation. On such occasions the males gobble vociferously, strutting about pompously as if to animate their companions. At the signal note of their leader, they wing their way to the opposite shore.
The Wild Turkey feeds on many kinds of berries, fruits, and grasses. Beetles, tadpoles, young frogs, and lizards are sometimes found in its crop. When the Turkeys reach their destination, they disperse in flocks, devouring the mast as they proceed.
Pairing time begins in March. The sexes roost apart, but at no great distance, so that when the female utters a call, every male within hearing responds, rolling note after note in rapid succession, in a voice resembling that of the tame Turkey when he hears any unusual noise. Where the Turkeys are numerous, the woods from one end to the other, sometimes for many miles, resound with these voices of wooing.
The specimen of the Wild Turkey presented in this number of Birds is of extraordinary size and beauty, and has been much admired. The day is not far distant when a living specimen of this noble bird will be sought for in vain in the United States.
WILD TURKEY—Meleagris gallopava.
Range—Eastern United States from Pennsylvania southward to Florida, west to Wisconsin, the Indian Territory and Texas.
Nest—On the ground, at the base of a bush or tree.
Eggs—Ten to fourteen, pale cream buff, finely and evenly speckled with grayish brown.
Wild Turkey (Meleagris gallopavo) by Lee at LPZoo
Of all clean birds you may eat. (Deuteronomy 14:11 AMP)
The Wild Turkey (Meleagris gallopavo) is native to North America and is the heaviest member of the diverse Galliformes and are in the Phasianidae – Pheasants, Fowl & Allies Family. It is the same species as the domestic turkey, which was originally derived from a southern Mexican subspecies of Wild Turkey (not the related Ocellated Turkey). Although native to North America, the Wild Turkey got its name due to the trade routes in place. During the 16th Century, the major trade route from the Americas and Asia required the goods to go to Constantinople in Turkey before being sent to Britain. The British at the time therefore, associated the Wild Turkey with the country Turkey and the name stuck.
Adult wild turkeys have long reddish-yellow to grayish-green legs. The body feathers are generally blackish and dark brown overall with a coppery sheen that becomes more complex in adult males. Adult males, called toms or gobblers, have a large, featherless, reddish head, red throat, and red wattles on the throat and neck. The head has fleshy growths called caruncles. Juvenile males are called jakes, the difference between an adult male and a juvenile is that the jake has a very short beard and his tail fan has longer feathers in the middle. The adult male’s tail fan will be all the same length. When males are excited, a fleshy flap on the bill expands, and this, the wattles and the bare skin of the head and neck all become engorged with blood, almost concealing the eyes and bill. The long fleshy object over a male’s beak is called a snood. When a male turkey is excited, its head turns blue; when ready to fight, it turns red. Each foot has three toes in front, with a shorter, rear-facing toe in back; males have a spur behind each of their lower legs.
Male turkeys have a long, dark, fan-shaped tail and glossy bronze wings. The male is substantially larger than the female, and his feathers have areas of red, purple, green, copper, bronze, and gold iridescence. Females, called hens, have feathers that are duller overall, in shades of brown and gray. The primary wing feathers have white bars. Turkeys have 5000 to 6000 feathers. Tail feathers are of the same length in adults, different lengths in juveniles.
Males typically have a “beard”, a tuft of coarse hair (modified feathers) growing from the center of the breast. Beards average 230 mm (9.1 in) in length. In some populations, females have a beard, usually shorter and thinner than that of the male. The adult male (or “tom”) normally weighs from 5 to 11 kg (11 to 24 lb) and measures 100–125 cm (39–49 in) in length. The adult female (or “hen”) is typically much smaller at 2.5–5.4 kg (5.5–12 lb) and is 76 to 95 cm (30 to 37 in) long. The wings are relatively small, as is typical of the galliform order, and the wingspan ranges from 1.25 to 1.44 m (4 ft 1 in to 4 ft 9 in). The bill is also relatively small. The tarsus of the Wild Turkey is quite long and sturdy. The tail is also relatively long The record-sized adult male Wild Turkey, … weighed 16.85 kg (37.1 lb). While it is usually rather lighter than the waterfowl, after the Trumpeter Swan, the turkey has the second heaviest maximum weight of any North American bird. Going on average mass, several other birds on the continent, including the American White Pelican and the very rare California Condor and Whooping Crane surpass the mean weight of turkeys.
Turkeys have many vocalizations: “gobbles,” “clucks,” “putts,” “purrs,” “yelps,” “cutts,” “whines,” “cackles,” and “kee-kees.” In early spring, male turkeys, also called gobblers or toms, gobble to announce their presence to females and competing males. The gobble can carry for up to a mile. Males also emit a low-pitched “drumming” sound; produced by the movement of air in the air sack in the chest, similar to the booming of a prairie chicken. In addition they produce a sound known as the “spit” which is a sharp expulsion of air from this air sack. Hens “yelp” to let gobblers know their location. Gobblers often yelp in the manner of females, and hens can gobble, though they rarely do so. Immature males, called jakes, often yelp.
Wild turkeys prefer hardwood and mixed conifer-hardwood forests with scattered openings such as pastures, fields, orchards and seasonal marshes. Open, mature forest with a variety of interspersion of tree species appear to be preferred. In the Northeast of North America, turkeys are most profuse in hardwood timber of oak-hickory and forests of red oak, beech, cherry and white ash. Best ranges for turkeys in the Coastal Plain and Piedmont sections have an interspersion of clearings, farms, and plantations with preferred habitat along principal rivers and in cypress and tupelo swamps. Appalachian and Cumberland plateaus, birds occupy mixed forest of oaks and pines on southern and western slopes, also hickory with diverse understories. Bald cypress and sweet gum swamps of s. Florida; also hardwood of Cliftonia in north-central Florida. Lykes Fisheating Creek area of s. Florida has hardwood hammocks, glades of short grasses with isolated live oak; nesting in neighboring prairies. Original habitat here was mainly longleaf pine with turkey oak and slash pine “flatwoods,” now mainly replaced by slash pine plantations.
Wild turkeys are omnivorous, foraging on the ground or climbing shrubs and small trees to feed. They prefer eating hard mast such as acorns, nuts, and various trees, including hazel, chestnut, hickory, and pinyon pine as well as various seeds, berries such as juniper and bearberry, roots and insects. Turkeys also occasionally consume amphibians and small reptiles such as lizards and snakes. Poults have been observed eating insects, berries, and seeds. Wild turkeys often feed in cow pastures, sometimes visit back yard bird feeders, and favor croplands after harvest to scavenge seed on the ground. Turkeys are also known to eat a wide variety of grasses.
Males are polygamous, mating with as many hens as they can. Male wild turkeys display for females by puffing out their feathers, spreading out their tails and dragging their wings. This behavior is most commonly referred to as strutting. Their heads and necks are colored brilliantly with red, blue and white. The color can change with the turkey’s mood, with a solid white head and neck being the most excited. They use gobbling, drumming/booming and spitting as signs of social dominance, and to attract females. Courtship begins during the months of March and April, which is when turkeys are still flocked together in winter areas. (Wikipedia with editing)
This was taken on the Roaring Fork Drive in Gatlinburg, TN last October.
The above article is an article in the monthly serial for October 1897 “designed to promote Knowledge of Bird-Live.” These include Color Photography, as they call them, today they are drawings. There are at least three Volumes that have been digitized by Project Gutenberg.
Birds Illustrated by Color Photography – Revisited
Vol 1. March, 1897 No. 3
THE JAPAN PHEASANT.
RIGINALLY the Pheasant was an inhabitant of Asia Minor but has been by degrees introduced into many countries, where its beauty of form, plumage, and the delicacy of its flesh made it a welcome visitor. The Japan Pheasant is a very beautiful species, about which little is known in its wild state, but in captivity it is pugnacious. It requires much shelter and plenty of food, and the breed is to some degree artificially kept up by the hatching of eggs under domestic hens and feeding them in the coop like ordinary chickens, until they are old and strong enough to get their own living.
The food of this bird is extremely varied. When young it is generally fed on ants’ eggs, maggots, grits, and similar food, but when it is full grown it is possessed of an accommodating appetite and will eat many kinds of seeds, roots, and leaves. It will also eat beans, peas, acorns, berries, and has even been known to eat the ivy leaf, as well as the berry.
This Pheasant loves the ground, runs with great speed, and always prefers to trust to its legs rather than to its wings. It is crafty, and when alarmed it slips quickly out of sight behind a bush or through a hedge, and then runs away with astonishing rapidity, always remaining under cover until it reaches some spot where it deems itself safe. The male is not domestic, passing an independent life during a part of the year and associating with others of its own sex during the rest of the season.
The nest is very rude, being merely a heap of leaves and grass on the ground, with a very slight depression. The eggs are numerous, about eleven or twelve, and olive brown in color. In total length, though they vary considerably, the full grown male is about three feet. The female is smaller in size than her mate, and her length a foot less.
The Japan Pheasant is not a particularly interesting bird aside from his beauty, which is indeed brilliant, there being few of the species more attractive.
The Green Pheasant, Phasianus versicolor, also known as Japanese Pheasant, is native to the Japanese Archipelago, to which it is endemic. The male (cock) is distinguished from that species by its dark green plumage on the breast and mantle. The male also has an iridescent violet neck, red bare facial skin and purplish green tail. The female is smaller than male and has a dull brown plumage with dark spots.
This species is common and widespread throughout its native range. It frequents farmlands and is often seen close to human settlements; it also has been introduced in Hawaii and (unsuccessfully) in North America as a gamebird.
It is the national bird of Japan. “It originally was designated as such in 1947 at the 81st Meeting of the National Bird Society of Japan. The Japanese pheasant was most likely selected because this green pheasant in unique to Japan,and futhermore because it appears in Japanese folk tales and so has become an integral part of the Japanese cultural landscape.”
Fagiano Okayama football club, a club based in Okayama, Okayama Prefecture, has a mascot based on the Green Pheasant.
The above article is an article in the monthly serial for March 1897 “designed to promote Knowledge of Bird-Live.” These include Color Photography, as they call them, today they are drawings. There are at least three Volumes that have been digitized by Project Gutenberg.
Birds Illustrated by Color Photography – Revisited
Vol 1. January, 1897 No. 1
THE GOLDEN PHEASANT
They call me the Golden Pheasant, because I have a golden crest. It is like a king’s crown. Don’t you think my dress is beautiful enough for a king?
See the large ruff around my neck. I can raise and lower it as I please.
I am a very large bird. I am fourteen inches tall and twenty-eight inches long. I can step right over your little robins and meadow larks and blue jays and not touch them.
Sometimes people get some of our eggs and put them under an old hen. By and by little pheasants hatch out, and the hen is very good to them. She watches over them and feeds them, but they do not wish to stay with her; they like their wild life. If they are not well fed they will fly away.
I have a wife. Her feathers are beginning to grow like mine. In a few years she will look as I do. We like to have our nests by a fallen tree.
Golden Pheasant (Chrysolophus pictus) WikiC
HE well-known Chinese Pheasant, which we have named the Golden Pheasant, as well as its more sober-colored cousin, the Silver Pheasant, has its home in Eastern Asia.
China is pre-eminently the land of Pheasants; for, besides those just mentioned, several other species of the same family are found there. Japan comes next to China as a pheasant country and there are some in India.
In China the Golden Pheasant is a great favorite, not only for its splendid plumage and elegant form, but for the excellence of its flesh, which is said to surpass even that of the common pheasant. It has been introduced into Europe, but is fitted only for the aviary.
For purposes of the table it is not likely to come into general use, as there are great difficulties in the way of breeding it in sufficient numbers, and one feels a natural repugnance to the killing of so beautiful a bird for the sake of eating it. The magnificent colors belong only to the male, the female being reddish brown, spotted and marked with a darker hue. The tail of the female is short. The statement is made, however, that some hens kept for six years by Lady Essex gradually assumed an attire like that of the males.
Fly-fishers highly esteem the crest and feathers on the back of the neck of the male, as many of the artificial baits owe their chief beauty to the Golden Pheasant.
According to Latham, it is called by the Chinese Keuki, or Keukee, a word which means gold flower fowl.
“A merry welcome to thee, glittering bird!
Lover of summer flowers and sunny things!
A night hath passed since my young buds have heard
The music of thy rainbow-colored wings—
Wings that flash spangles out where’er they quiver,
Like sunlight rushing o’er a river.”
What a beautiful bird. I am glad in 2012 that birds are not used for their feathers as much as they were back in the 1800’s. I’ve noticed in the first articles how the birds mentioned are either caged, captive, eaten or their feathers used for hats and other uses. Man was given dominion over the animals and are allowed to eat them, but I still like to see them out and about freely flying.
For You meet him with the blessings of goodness; You set a crown of pure gold upon his head. (Psalms 21:3 NKJV)
Now when He had taken the scroll, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb, each having a harp, and golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints. (Revelation 5:8 NKJV)
The Golden Pheasant or “Chinese Pheasant”, (Chrysolophus pictus) is a gamebird of the order Galliformes (gallinaceous birds) and the family Phasianidae. It is native to forests in mountainous areas of western China but feral populations have been established in the United Kingdom and elsewhere.
The adult male is 35.4-41.3 in (90–105 cm) in length, its tail accounting for two-thirds of the total length. It is unmistakable with its golden crest and rump and bright red body. The deep orange “cape” can be spread in display, appearing as an alternating black and orange fan that covers all of the face except its bright yellow eye, with a pinpoint black pupil.
Males have a golden-yellow crest with a hint of red at the tip. The face, throat, chin, and the sides of neck are rusty tan. The wattles and orbital skin are both yellow in colour, and the ruff or cape is light orange. The upper back is green and the rest of the back and rump are golden-yellow in colour. The tertiaries are blue whereas the scapulars are dark red. Another characteristic of the male plumage is the central tail feathers which are black spotted with cinnamon as well as the tip of the tail being a cinnamon buff. The upper tail coverts are the same colour as the central tail feathers. Males also have a scarlet breast, and scarlet and light chestnut flanks and underparts. Lower legs and feet are a dull yellow.
The female (hen) is much less showy, with a duller mottled brown plumage similar to that of the female Common Pheasant. She is darker and more slender than the hen of that species, with a proportionately longer tail (half her 60–80 cm length). The female’s breast and sides are barred buff and blackish brown, and the abdomen is plain buff. She has a buff face and throat. Some abnormal females may later in their lifetime get some male plumage. Lower legs and feet are a dull yellow.
Both males and females have yellow legs and yellow bills.
Despite the male’s showy appearance, these hardy birds are very difficult to see in their natural habitat, which is dense, dark young conifer forests with sparse undergrowth. Consequently, little is known of their behaviour in the wild.
They feed on the ground on grain, leaves and invertebrates, but roost in trees at night. While they can fly, they prefer to run: but if startled they can suddenly burst upwards at great speed, with a distinctive wing sound.
The Golden Pheasant is commonly found in zoos and aviaries, but often as impure specimens that have the similar Lady Amherst’s Pheasant in their lineage. (Wikipedia)
The above article is the third article in the monthly serial that was started in January 1897 “designed to promote Knowledge of Bird-Live.” These include Color Photography, as they call them, today they are drawings. There are at least three Volumes that have been digitized by Project Gutenberg.