BIRDS

GAMBEL'S QUAIL

Gambel's Quail are rarely found on the Navajo Nation. Although the species is very common in southern Arizona, they are mostly found only along the San Juan and Colorado Rivers on the Navajo Nation. This quail is very recognizable with its black bib and black crest feathers. Like other quail, they spend most of their time on the ground and within a 'covey' or group of quail. They tend to be found in more shrubby habitat than the open grasslands preferred by the Scaled Quail. But the diet of the two species is nearly the same and consists of plant seeds, leaves, fruit and a few insects.

Quail are called "Déłdánii" in the Navajo language. The Quail is considered as a water bird, and their feathers are used as offerings in the Water Way ceremony.