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HUNTERS ENCOURAGED TO REPORT MOUNTAIN QUAIL HARVEST

Again this year, the Nevada Department of Wildlife (NDOW) is looking to hunters to help with mountain quail conservation efforts by providing basic information about birds that they have harvested.

“Over the past few years, we have received valuable information from hunters about these birds and we are again asking for their help,” said Craig Mortimore, NDOW staff biologist. “The information that we receive from hunters is of tremendous help in our conservation planning efforts.”

In recent years there have been growing concerns about the status of the birds, which are found in mountain ranges in the extreme western part of the U.S. These concerns have spawned a petition to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service that asks for the bird to be listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act.

“Obviously we’re concerned about the status of the bird in Nevada, so we want to have as much information as possible. And the information that we get from hunters is vitally important in our efforts,” Mortimore said.

Besides conducting biological research, NDOW biologists have been capturing
mountain quail and releasing them into habitats that appear to be well suited for the
birds, but where they did not previously exist.

Mountain quail are found in mountainous areas in the western and northern portions of the state. They are large quail that are gray in color with chestnut throats that are outlined in white and have long, straight plumes on their heads.

The birds are typically located in dense brush and woodlands at elevations up to 10,000 feet, but will move to lower elevations when the weather cools. In the fall, they are found in coveys of up to 20 birds.

Research has shown that the main threat to mountain quail is loss of habitat that is caused by human development in mountain ranges where the birds live.

Hunters who harvest mountain quail are asked to report the date, location and number of birds harvested. This information can be reported to any NDOW office or by calling Mortimore at (775) 688-1914.

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