Written by Abigail Holmes, Texas A&M University WFSC Ď19
Edited by Dr. Dale Rollins, Statewide Coordinator, Reversing the Quail Decline Initiative
Edited by Amanda Gobeli, Extension Associate, Texas A&M Natural Resources Institute
Gambelís quail (Callipepla gambelli) are less common in Texas than northern bobwhites (Colinus virginianus) and scaled quail (Callipepla squamata), but they are compelling creatures with unique adaptations that allow them to survive the harsh desert conditions in which they live. These ground-dwelling birds were discovered in the 1840s by William Gambel, a young American naturalist who loved birds and minerals (Ashworth 2017). Gambel discovered several other species to which his name is now attributed, including the dainty Mountain Chickadee (Poecile gambeli) and Gambelís oak (Quercus gambelii). Although William Gambel discovered many interesting species, researchers continue to focus on Gambelís quail and are perpetually learning more about these charismatic birds.