Marbled Wood-Quail Odontophorus gujanensis

  • Order: Galliformes
  • Family: Odontophoridae
  • Polytypic: 8 subspecies
  • Authors: Clark Frederick Johnson



The Marble Wood-Quail forages on the ground, scratching at the leaf litter. Small coveys of 5-8 call softly and move more or less in a single file along the forest floor. When alarmed they crouch and hide, or run. They use their wings with hesitancy and tend to only fly when surprised or hard-pressed (Skutch 1947m Hilty and Brown 1986). They seldom rise higher than a man’s head, and fly a short distance to disappear in the dense underbrush (Skutch 1947).

Marbled Wood-Quail preen each other socially: "The other promptly joined him here; and they perched close side by side, alternately preening their own and other’s feathers. Each billed the plumage of its companion’s head, and of the abdomen between the legs, and sometimes seemed to run its bill over the legs as well” (Skutch 1947).

Social and interspecific behavior

Occurs in single species flocks (coveys).

Recommended Citation

Johnson, C. F. (2011). Marbled Wood-Quail (Odontophorus gujanensis), version 1.0. In Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA.