Fun Common Buttonquail Facts For Kids

Shirin Biswas
Oct 20, 2022 By Shirin Biswas
Originally Published on Sep 01, 2021
Edited by Luca Demetriou
Here are some common buttonquail facts that will tell you all you need to know about the species!
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Age: 3-18
Read time: 6.8 Min

The common buttonquail (Turnix sylvaticus) is an old world bird species that is found in various tropical, temperate as well as terrestrial regions. They are found all over Europe, South-East Asia, Philippines and the southern region of Africa. They are mostly seen in search of seeds and insects to feed on, and are usually solitary.

This small bird species has a brown or rufous colored body, which is mottled with black and red spots. The color of its underside provides a beautiful contrast, and sets the species apart.

Interestingly, not only is the female common buttonquail larger, but is also more aggressive and takes up courting rituals - unlike other bird species. On the other hand, the male takes care of off-springs and eggs. You want to know more, right? Keep reading for more!

For more relatable content, check out these leghorn chicken facts and greater sage-grouse facts for kids.

Common Buttonquail Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a common buttonquail?

The common buttonquail, Andalusian hemipode, small buttonquail or Kurrichane buttonquail, is a bird that is pretty much found all over the world.

What class of animal does a common buttonquail belong to?

The scientific term for the class that the common buttonquail belongs to is Aves, however, in popular language, we lovingly classify them simply as birds.

How many common buttonquails are there in the world?

There is no research or study that can tell us the exact common buttonquail population that there is in the world, however, the conservation status of this species suggests that the population size is fairly stable and that we are going to have these birds around for quite some time!

Where does a common buttonquail live?

The common buttonquail range of habitat usually comprises of scrublands, grass-lands and savannah. These small birds avoid living in rainforests or mudflats, since it becomes difficult for them to navigate. They are spotted in tropical, terrestrial, as well as in temperate climates, which tells us a lot about their adaptive abilities.

What is a common buttonquail's habitat?

The common buttonquail habitat is distributed quite extensively across the globe. These birds are found in places such as South-East Asia, India, Southern parts of Africa, South Iberian islands, Philippines, Europe and Southern Spain. However, the breeding season differs according to the regions that these birds inhabit.

Who do common buttonquails live with?

Common buttonquails or Andalusian hemipodes, like other quails, are quite solitary and like to live alone. In rare instances where these birds are not alone, two mated birds would be seen together.

How long does a common buttonquail live?

The average lifespan of the Andalusian hemipode is not known to us, and since these birds are not related to true quails, it becomes difficult to put a finger on the longevity of their life.

How do they reproduce?

The breeding season for this bird species is variable, depending upon the region that they are inhabiting. In India and other places in South-East Asia, the Andalusian hemipodes breed during the rainy season, whereas in Spain, they breed in Spring and summer.

In places of Africa that are north of the equator, these birds can be seen to breed during April to June, however in places south of the equator, breeding takes place during January to June and from September to December.

The common buttonquail female quite beautifully reverses the tradition of males undertaking the job of courting. In the case of this species and its subspecies, the female bird courts the male through a rather harsh call and feeding.

The female bird lays four or five gray or pinkish eggs in a nest that is made on the ground. The common buttonquail male, on the other hand, takes up the charge of incubating the eggs and taking care of the hatchlings!

The female Andalusian hemipode has surprisingly less involvement with the process of hatching or rearing of off-springs after the eggs have been laid!

What is their conservation status?

 According to the IUCN, the conservation status of the common button-quail or Andalusian hemipode is that of Least Concern. As we know, this certifies and assures that the population of this bird species is stable and that their habitat is not under the threat of any serious degradation in the near future.

Common Buttonquail Fun Facts

What do common buttonquails look like?

The common buttonquail has features that are quite uniform throughout the species and its two sexes. These birds have a brown or rufous plumage that is mottled with red and black colored feathers.

The breast and underwing coverts are pale buff in color, with occasional black colored spots. They have a slender nose, stout body and rounded wings, which makes them quite indistinguishable against the terrain.

This brown colored member of the family Turnicidae is not related to quails, in spite of the name!

How cute are they?

There can be no room for uncertainty that this species (Turnix sylvaticus) is very cute. With the small body, buff colored breast and mottled feathers, these birds paint an amusingly cute picture!

How do they communicate?

The family turnicidae is known for its rather harsh and loud call. The female Andalusian hemipode (Turnix sylvaticus) is especially loud and can be heard most frequently during the breeding season, when it is in search of a mate.

The male Andalusian hemipode, on the other hand, is fairly submissive and has a less harsh call which can be heard very scarcely.

How big is a common buttonquail?

The average size of a common buttonquail or Andalusian hemipode (Turnix sylvatica) is in the range of 5.5-6.6 in (14-17 cm). If you would like a few comparisons for better understanding, you will be amused to know that a toulouse goose or a bean goose can be about seven times the size of this species!

How fast can a common buttonquail fly?

The common buttonquail (Turnix sylvatica) is not known to be a bird that has specialized agencies for flight. These birds usually spend their entire lives on the ground, as they search for food on foot. When threatened, these birds can take a flight for a few seconds only, since they have rounded wings.

How much does a common buttonquail weigh?

The average weight of a common buttonquail is in the range of 1.27-2.5 oz (36-71 g). A chicken weighs at least 20 times as these small birds. At the same time, a common buttonquail weights 100 times as a hummingbird!

What are the male and female names of the species?

There are no distinct names for the two sexes of the common buttonquail or small buttonquail (Turnux sylvatica), and hence we choose to simply refer to them as the male common buttonquail and female common buttonquail.

What would you call a baby common buttonquail?

The common buttonquail baby would be called by the same names as all juveniles of the class of aves - hatchling, nestling or chick!

What do they eat?

The common buttonquail diet consists of insects and seeds that this bird species can find freely in its region of habitat.

Are they dangerous?

There is no data that would suggest that the common buttonquail or its subspecies is dangerous to humans or any other animal species. They are fairly peaceful, and let's be honest, they are so small and look so harmless that nobody would be scared!

Would they make a good pet?

Some households in South-East Asia, India and Philippines do domesticate these birds, and there is no reason why it would cause you trouble either. If you would like to have one of these birds as your pet, make sure that they have a lot of open space to run around in.

Did you know...

The conservation status of the common buttonquails from the Old World is of Least Concern.

This bird species and its subspecies builds its nest on the ground out of grass and twigs.

The breeding season for the birds that inhabit the Southern parts of Africa (south of the equator) can range from January, until June, and towards the region south of the equator, the breeding is from April to June.

The common buttonquail eggs are grayish or pinkish in color and are taken care of by the male parent.

This species and its subspecies are endangered in parts of Spain.

Although the word "quail" is attached to its name, the common buttonquail is not related to true quails.

Are common buttonquails loud?

The female common buttonquail is known to be quite loud, while the males are quite silent.

Are common buttonquails nocturnal?

The common buttonquails are usually diurnal, while you may be able to see some nocturnal activity from them occasionally!

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! For more relatable content, check out these bobwhite quail facts and blue grouse facts pages.

You can even occupy yourself at home by coloring in one of our free printable bird coloring pages.

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Written by Shirin Biswas

Bachelor of Arts specializing in English Language and Literature

Shirin Biswas picture

Shirin BiswasBachelor of Arts specializing in English Language and Literature

With a degree in English from Amity University, Noida, Shirin has won awards for oratory, acting, and creative writing. She has a wealth of experience as an English teacher, editor, and writer, having previously worked at Quizzy and Big Books Publishing. Her expertise lies in editing study guides for children and creating engaging content.

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