I walk around the beautiful campus at La Trobe University many mornings simply to enjoy the landscapes and to get some exercise. The last few mornings I have seen Brown quail between the Sports Field Lake and the Austrian Club – actually almost adjacent to the lake. This morning I saw 10 quail on a track that runs done behind a row of factories towards the Austrian Club. As far as I know Brown quail is a new bird for La Trobe Campus. The Campus itself is a nature-rich area – 90 bird species have been identified in the Wildlife Reserve alone. The land in question looks a bit scrappy with lots of introduced flora and the remnant beer cans and refuse of irresponsible users of the area. But there remain pockets of native grassland that are among the best in Melbourne.
I reported the sightings to the campus ranger and some better qualified observers than me will check out the sighting over the next few days. I’ll report back if they suggest a misidentification.