Grey Partridge

Scientific name: Perdix perdix

Did you know: Grey Partridges, despite their name, are not likely to be found in pear trees, preferring to stay close to the ground!

What Do Grey Partridges Look Like? (how to identify them)

Grey Partridges are medium-sized, plump birds, known for their distinctive orange face and rotund body. These birds have a brown back, grey flanks and chest, and a white belly, often sporting a large chestnut-brown horseshoe mark in males. 

They fly with whirring wings and occasional glides, revealing a chestnut tail, distinguishing them in flight.

Differences Between Male And Female Grey Partridges

The most notable difference between male and female Grey Partridges is the chestnut horseshoe mark on the belly, which is prominent in males and also present in many females. Females are slightly smaller and have less vibrant markings compared to males.

What Do Grey Partridges Eat?

Grey Partridges are predominantly herbivorous, feeding on leaves, seeds, and grains. They also consume insects, especially during the breeding season and in the early stages of their chicks’ lives, providing a necessary protein source.

Where Do Grey Partridges Live? (inc. migration info)

Grey Partridges are native to farmland and grassland habitats throughout Europe and parts of Asia. They are largely non-migratory, forming flocks of up to 30 birds outside the breeding season. In the UK, they are a familiar sight in open countryside, preferring the safety of low ground cover.

Bird Calls & Songs (the unique voices of Grey Partridges)

The call of the Grey Partridge is a distinctive and harsh, high-pitched ‘kieerr-ik’. When startled, these birds often take off with a loud and abrupt ‘rick rick rick’ sound, adding to their unique auditory signature.

Fun Grey Partridge Facts (kid friendly)

  • Grey Partridges are also known as ‘English’ or ‘Hungarian’ Partridges.
  • They prefer running to flying and are rarely found in trees.
  • A group of Grey Partridges is called a ‘covey’.
  • They lay up to 20 eggs, one of the highest numbers for any bird species.
  • Grey Partridges can camouflage well, looking like clods of earth in fields.
  • They have a unique ‘kieerr-ik’ song.
  • These birds are part of the pheasant family.
  • Despite their decline, Grey Partridges are still common in some parts of Europe.
  • They are a popular game bird and have been introduced to several continents.
  • The chicks of Grey Partridges can only eat insects for the first ten days of their lives.

Grey Partridge Images

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Male
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Female
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Hatchling
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Nestling
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Chick
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Fledgling
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Juvenile

Facts About The Grey Partridge

Diet: Leaves, seeds and insects
Bird Family: Pheasants and partridges
Length: 30cm
Wingspan: 46cm
Weight: 390g
Scientific Name: Perdix perdix

The Grey Partridge Can Be Seen In The UK During The Following Months

  • January
  • February
  • March
  • April
  • May
  • June
  • July
  • August
  • September
  • October
  • November
  • December