Marbled Wood-Quail Odontophorus gujanensis

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

Sounds and Vocal Behavior


Members of a covey of Marbled Wood-Quail constantly utter low soft notes when foraging in groups. The song is most often heard in the evening as males and females call to each other (Skutch 1947). The song is rapid, and rises and falls in pitch in a chant described by Skutch as "burst the bubble burst the bubble burst the bubble".  Diamond and Terborgh (1968) and Hilty and Brown (1986) describe the song a rapidly repeated "corcorovado", in which the "corcoro" is always sung by one member of a pair, and "vado" by the other; this is an antiphonal duet, in which male and female sing alternately rather than simultaneously (Diamond and Terborgh 1968). The song may be heard at any hour of the day, but it is most common in the evenings. Singing is more frequent during the breeding season as males call to females who are lying on the nest. During the wetter months their calls become less frequent (Skutch 1947).

Nonvocal Sounds

As in other quail, when flushed it takes flight with a noticeable wing-flapping sound.

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.