Quails were introduced to NZ in the 1860s from North America. They tend to run for cover when approached. They have big families due to large clutch sizes and 'egg dumping' by other couples.
Quails are a round ball-shaped bird with short legs, they have brown speckled plumage and the males have a prominent crest made of six overlapping feathers, females also have a crest that is much smaller.
At Cornwall Park they are often found in the craters and on the hill behind Huia Lodge or under the olive trees on the slope of One Tree Hill/Maungakiekie. Quails are commonly found throughout NZ in scrub or nearby open land.
They feed on seeds, fruits, leaves, shoots and some insects.
Main call consists of 3 syllables 'Chi-ca-go'. They also have a rapid and repeated 'pit-pit' alarm call to warn others of danger.