Chukar


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Chukar

 

(Alectoris kakelik), also chukar partridge, a bird of the family Phasianidae of the order Galliformes. The size of a hazel hen, it weighs 350–700 g. The back is olive green or bluish gray, the sides have dark stripes, and the bill and legs are red. The chukar is distributed in the mountains from the Balkans to China inclusively. In the USSR it is found in the Caucasus, Middle Asia, southern Kazakhstan, the southern Altai, and the Tuva ASSR. Similar species are found in southern Europe, in northern Africa, and on the Arabian Peninsula. The bird settles on rocky mountain slopes (from the foothills to the snow line) overgrown with sparse shrubs. In winter it moves to the foothills. The chukar nests on the ground, laying nine to 12 eggs (less often 14–17), which are incubated 23–25 days. The bird feeds on the green parts of plants, on seeds, and on insects. It is hunted and is often kept in cages in Middle Asia. Its numbers are decreasing sharply.

REFERENCE

Ptitsy Sovetskogo Soiuza, vol. 4. Edited by G. P. Dement’ev and N. A. Gladkov. Moscow, 1952.
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