The Bob White population was fairly good in the 70’s, but since that time has declined roughly 82%. Their decline has been in part due to: land being cleared, thus destroying their natural habitat and leaving them with less cover to give them natural protection, Animals like: Racoons, rats, mice, cats, dogs, coyotes, fox, hawks, cow egrets and even ants destroying the eggs and consuming the chicks.
Conservationists and various state agencies have been working with land owners to bring the Bob White’s population back. But it is a long slow process as it takes close to half a year for the Bob Whites to lay, hatch and raise to maturity their chicks.
Each year we are getting increased requests from individuals wanting to help The Native Bob White Quail. The most common comment that is made is that they feel like they don’t have enough land to be effective. All it takes is a small amount of land that can provide some cover for the quail such as a brush pile or a fence line that is let to grow up with grass and weeds. They love pine forests with underbrush, and fields of grass or hay, maybe you have a neighboring property with such coverage. Then if you can provide them with fresh food and water you are off to a great start on a new enjoyable hobby as well as helping the wild quail population to regain their numbers!
One person that comes to mind called me and said: “He missed not seeing the wild Bob Whites and hearing their calls.” After a lengthy discussion he decided that he would like to try and raise a few just to turn loose when they got old enough. We discussed his pen that he had made prior for some chickens and with a few modifications, figured it would work. He picked up some young bobs from us, took them home and when they had matured a little, turned them loose. To his delight, they left the pen, found a near by brush pile to hang out in and around, then as evening would near, they returned to the open pen where he had left food and fresh water. He then closed the door to the pen providing them with protection at night. The next morning they were again let loose. This became a delightful ritual for him as he got to see and hear the Bob Whites. And, he was helping the wild population to increase.
Give us a call and we can discuss with you what you are trying to do and offer some ideas that may lead to your helping the wild numbers of Bob Whites to increase in your area.