During certain parts of the year Quail may not call. Listen to your surroundings and if you are hearing Quails calling to each other, then you stand a good chance of calling them toward your trap.
Resident in the Sonoran desert of Arizona and Mexico, extending into southern New Mexico, up and down the Rio Grande, up the Colorado River drainage into Utah’s canyon country, and west to California and southern Nevada. Preferred habitats include bushy and thorny vegetation of southwestern deserts.
Quail like the seeds of annual forbs and grasses such as snakeweed (Gutierrezia spp.), croton (Croton spp.), pigweed (Amaranthus spp.), bristlegrass (Setaria spp.), and panicgrass (Panicum spp.) are essential food sources for quail. They sometimes comprise70% of a quail’s annual diet. Green vegetation such as filaree or storksbill (Erodium spp.) and kochia (Kochia scoparium) becomes essential food in the late winter, early spring, and summer months by improving quail body condition and thereby improving nesting success.
Succulent fruits from Christmas cactus (Opuntia lepticaulis) and pricklypear cactus (Opuntia spp.) are eaten in the summer and fall. In the fall, Gambel’s quail often eat mistletoe berries from cottonwood and oak trees. Ironically, many plants favored by quail are considered weed species and emerge after soil disturbances.
Insects, often eaten by adults, are critical to nourishing young chicks. Insects are considered the ideal quail food providing protein, energy, and water. Managing for a diversity of forges (broad-leafed weeds) will provide an abundance of insects and seeds.
Adequate cover is an essential component of quail habitat. Cover refers to the structure of the habitat. When differing cover types are provided, food and water generally are not a limiting factor. Necessary types of cover include nesting, brooding, loafing, roosting, escape and thermo-regulation (providing shade, warmth, or cover from adverse weather conditions, i.e. hail).
Nesting cover is extremely important and is typically associated with grasses that form a canopy over the nest, protecting it from the sun and rain and concealing the hen while she is incubating. Examples of nesting cover plants are bunchgrasses and bluestem (Andropogon, Bothriochloa, and Schizachyrium spp.), switchgrass (Panicum virgatum), and tobosagrass (Hilaria mutica).
(Source: New Mexico Game and Fish Dept.)
Stay Prepared! Stay Alive!