With quail numbers being drastically lower after the blizzards an effort was made to trap and relocate quail to areas where they had once been abundant. The initial program began with quail being brought in from Kansas and released in Ohio. This program did not work as the quail populations were not doing as well as biologists had expected.
Currently, quail numbers are declining and to try and shed some light on why, biologists are trapping quail and putting transmitters on the birds to see how well they survive and what habitats they are using. Biologists trap the quail by using a trap baited with corn or millet. The trap is created much like a funnel and once the quail enters the trap it cannot get out.
The small radio transmitters look much like a necklace that hangs around the bird’s neck and rests on the breast. Each bird is assigned its own separate frequency and the transmitter omits a signal that when received by a receiver the biologist hears a beeping sound.
To find where the bird is without disturbing it, the biologist makes a note of the direction the sound is coming from and moves to different spot to get another reading which when combined with the first reading will pinpoint exactly where the bird is located.
Hopefully the information collected from this program will help to increase quail populations in the areas they were prior to the blizzards, however one of the biggest problems quail face might simply be us. As we change the land from farming practices to mini-malls, we also have a significant impact on the wildlife of those areas.