A summer whistling-cock count of bobwhite quail was made and compared with covey numbers in subsequent hunting seasons in 1950-53 on 4 areas in Alabama and 6 in South Carolina. Findings involved a total of 901 whistling cocks and 910 coveys. Study area acreage in Alabama was 5,571 and 6,679 in South Carolina. There was a relationship between the numbers of whistling cocks heard in summer and coveys found in subsequent hunting seasons when the data were summarized annually and by states. An increase or decrease in the number of whistling cocks heard in summer over the previous year was followed by an increase or decrease respectively in coveys in the subsequent hunting season when the results were summarized by states. Using this technique, it is possible to predict by physiographic types the number of coveys that will be found in winter from the number of whistling cocks heard the previous summer, if areas 500-1,700 acres in size are used with a total of at least 12,000 acres. The confidence limits of the prediction increase both below and above the mean.
Additional publication details
A summer whistling cock count of bobwhite quail as an index to wintering populations