I was surprised when I opened my Sierra Vista, AZ motel room door to see a Gambel’s Quail jump up into a tall shrub. After perching on the top briefly the quail wiggled through the leaves to inside the shrub where it couldn’t be seen because of the thickness of the leaves. What an interesting adaptation–the quail are roosting in the shrubs around the courtyard of this motel where they are not visible to people and have protection from predators that are unlikely to come this close to humans to seek them out.
I took the bottom photo from just inside my motel room–see the quail on the very top of the shrub. Believe it or not, this motel is located in the middle of this small city. So where do the quail come from? These quail live in some vacant lots which have mostly desert habitat that are located around the motel. There were about 2 dozen Gambel’s Quail that worked their way to the many shrubs here, some walking right by the pool to get to the shrubs and some perching on the pool chairs then flying into the shrubs from the chairs. I had a blast watching them.