Visual display of the Aldo Leopold papers : 9/25/10-3 : County, State and Foreign Files

				
 
 
 
 
10 
 
 
               PLAN          O OF CHUKAR PARTRIDGE 
 
 
        The Conservation Commission again is planning the 
stocking of Chukar Partridge in certain areas of Iowa this 
year in an attempt to determine the suitability of this game 
bird to the conditions of food and cover present in certaln 
areas of the state. During the past year the Commission 
stocked a total of 282 of these birds in 10 counties of the 
state. This year 35 pairs of Chukars are being retained at 
the State Game Farm near Boone to be used in providing stock 
for planting. Plantings during the past year were confined to 
those counties of the state which have failed to produce shoot- 
able surpluses of either Pheasant or Quail.  Stocking during 
this next year will be done with the same thought in mind. 
 
        This bird, a native of India, has caught the fancy of 
game breeders and game commissions of many states during the 
past several years. The Chukar first was introduced into this 
country in 1928, and since that time various state game depart- 
ments have done experimental work with the bird in an attempt 
to fit it into environments which thus far have failed to sup- 
port adequate populations of native game birds. 
 
        In size the Chukar Partridge is about a third larger 
than the Hungarian Partridge. It is dove gray in color, with 
black sides and rusty white stripes. The light gray of the 
head and chin is accentuated by a bright red beak and a black 
circular stripe running across the base of the bill through 
the eyes. In its native range in India the Chukar is said to 
thrive in barren, rocky country and has been called "the bird 
who lives on nothing". Experience with the bird in this 
country ha, ý     ted the doubtfulness of this allusion to 
its lack of feeding habits, however. It has been noted that 
theChukar utilizes the same food resources as are used by 
members of the partridge family. 
 
        Due to the present lack of sufficient data concernlnz , 
the bird, the Iowa Conservation Commission is not making any 
attempt to propagate the Chukar in very large numbers for 
stocking purposes in this state. Conservation officers in the 
Iowa counties where Chukars have been stocked are at present 
making monthly checks on the birds and reporting concerning 
     %ood and cover preferences and other significant data 
relative to its habits. These observers have noted that the 
Chukar apparently does not utilize corn for food. Under Iowa 
conditions Chukars have indicated a tendency to stay more or 
less tame, roosting with chickens and even have been found on 
porches of houses and in yards. Investigators in Pennsylvania 
have noted similar characteristics in liberated birds and in 
addition have pointed out that the Chukar seems very suscep- 
tible to decimation by predators, presumably because of its