Egg Calls
Streaming Audio

Listen:  Flash Audio Player
[Once the program is playing, click and drag across the volume bars to increase or decrease volume.]
Note: This audio requires the free Flash Player. Please let us know if you have any trouble playing this program.

Adult quail have a broad range of calls that they use to communicate over shorter and longer distances.

Quail chicks begin communicating with each other even inside the egg, as soon as their lungs can begin to use the air in the egg's air sac. Their newly working lungs make little clicks as they breath first the air in the air sac and then, breaking a hole in the shell, outside air. The rate of their breathing changes as hatching approaches. The changing speed of the clicks allows the chicks in a clutch to synchronize their hatching ... as long as the eggs are in contact with each other so that they can hear each other's clicks.

I used recordings of quail calls from three different sources: the CD collection Western Birding by Ear produced for the Peterson Field Guide series, the CD collection Bird Songs of California produced by the Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology, and the CD collection Western Bird Songs produced by the Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology for the Peterson Field Guides series.