Definition of bobwhite in US English:


(also bobwhite quail)


  • A New World quail with mottled reddish-brown plumage, and typically a pale throat and eyestripe.

    Genus Colinus, family Phasianidae: two species, in particular the northern (or common) bobwhite (C. virginianus)

    • ‘Squirrels, unlike popular game species such as white-tailed deer and bobwhite quail, are not ‘edge’ creatures.’
    • ‘Urban sprawl and changes in fanning methods have been hard on bobwhites.’
    • ‘I knew that the bobwhite hustling toward a nearby thicket was going to be lunch long before I touched the trigger.’
    • ‘The bobwhite quail counts are nothing less than ‘splendor in the grass’ across most of South Texas.’
    • ‘Our ‘best’ birds of the summer, at least so far, have been a pair of bobwhite, eating the white millet that we scatter on the ground for the doves and sparrows.’
    • ‘When contest sponsors add wild hogs and bobwhites to the list, Texans will be the favorites.’
    • ‘Suddenly the ground is alive with squirrels and bobwhite quail.’
    • ‘And, like the setter, he can be relied on to do an adequate job of handling bobwhites and pheasants, under average conditions.’
    • ‘Dog handler Shawn Griffin kneeled and grabbed a bobwhite quail from the panting pointer.’
    • ‘As a control, the researchers also exposed chickadees to a perched bobwhite quail, a non-predatory species.’
    • ‘We start to hope that maybe bobwhites or turkeys will choose our yard and thrill us with their presence as they cautiously try to capture some of the seed bounty on the ground.’
    • ‘Sadly, the 38 bobwhite reported by only 5 observers, plus a covey of 6 seen before the count, confirms the rapid decline of these once abundant Cape birds.’
    • ‘The berries hang on into early spring unless devoured by songbirds, bobwhite, deer, squirrels, or wild turkey.’
    • ‘On the hunting fields, 12,000 birds are harvested annually, consisting of pheasants, chukar partridge and bobwhite quail.’
    • ‘The dogs had flushed a skulking covey of bobwhites.’
    • ‘Wild bobwhites bear as little resemblance to their pen-raised kin as Cessnas do to F - 16s.’
    • ‘The bobwhite is an excellent example of a species on the wane.’
    • ‘A bobwhite called intermittently in the distance.’
    • ‘The first of these was an intense passion among local farmers for hunting that delicious, wild speckled bird known as the bobwhite quail.’
    • ‘There is a place where bobwhites thrive, there on the Texas plains.’


Early 19th century: imitative of its call.