While working on our opera story this morning, I was startled by bird chirping outside my office window.

“What’s all that ruckus?” I wondered.

It was a family of desert quail fearlessly paying Eagle’s Nest a visit. And they joined “Don Pasquale” with the highest of the high sopranos notes.

I quickly grabbed my camera and snapped the above picture (lavender highlight added).

And then I remembered another quail tale…

Eight years ago, almost to the day, and at  the same place – my office window ledge – another pair of desert quail paid me a visit.

Home5_07_06 014

You can see them above on the same window ledge.  I suspect they must have been on their first date. Because a year later, a miracle happened.  An entire family of desert quail, just like the one from this morning, was born right here outside my office window at Eagle’s Nest.

AZ desert quailIt was one of the cutest stories of my early years here in North Scottsdale (see “Cactus & Quail: A Desert Tale“, June 2007).

Here’s an excerpt from it:

“A few weeks ago, a quail (left thumbnail) had decided to lay her eggs in that flower pot at my front entrance. She laid on them patiently for weeks, at first fluttering out every time I would walk out the front door; then settling down like a “domestic” bird after she realized I meant her no harm.

About two weeks ago, I came back from the pool and heard all this ruckus and chirping at my front door. About a dozen or so little quail were running around that doormat. When they saw me, they all ran away, led by the mother. I never saw them again. The only evidence that they were ever hear were the broken egg shells inside the pot. (They are still there).”

So now that we have seen an encore of that scene seven years ago, I have two questions for you:

  • How many chicks do you see in this morning’s quail tale picture?
  • How many quail would have been born here in the last seven years assuming the same the love birds from 2006 kept procreating at the same rate?




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