It was so good to hear two bobwhite quail whistling yesterday as we planted brown-top millet and chufa. It is a sound many young people have never heard in the wild because of the loss of habitat for quail. When I was growing up we had quail to eat about once a week for supper because my dad was a big quail hunter and the birds were easy to find, then a few years later that became a thing of the past.
When quail were abundant the area was scattered with many small farms and nearly every farm had a small garden with small grains and legumes that provided for quail. The farms were open and young birds were protected by the grasses in these fields. I can actually remember my dad hunting here but later this farm was planted in loblolly pines. I was blessed to buy this farm a few years ago and we cut most of the timber and planted it back in longleaf pines. They are now eight years old and have been burned four times. Each year we plant cool and warm season grasses to provide seed for wildlife.
If you want quail on your property, change the habitat. I know I will not see quail back like they were as I was growing up but we are seeing them come back where we are not managing for longleaf pines.
It was good to hear those two whistling yesterday!