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Madagascar partridge (en); perdiz-de-Madagáscar (pt); perdrix de Madagascar (fr); perdiz malgache (es); perlwachtel (de)
This species is endemic to Madagascar, being found throughout the country with the exception of the south-western coast. It has also been introduced to Réunion and Mauritius.
These birds are 24-28 cm long and weigh about 220 g.
The Madagascar partridge is found in tropical grasslands and scrublands, and also in clearings within moist tropical forests and in arable land. They are present from sea level up to an altitude of 2.700 m.
They feed mainly on seeds, but also take berries and insects.
Madagascar partridges are monogamous and breed in March-June. They nest on a simple scrape in the ground, often hidden under a tuft of grass or scrub. The female lays 8-20 eggs rufous-brown eggs with dark brown mottles which are incubated for 18-19 days. The chicks are nidifugous, leaving the nest soon after hatching.
IUCN status - LC (Least Concern)
This species has a large breeding range and the global population is estimated at 20.000-50.000 individuals. This species is declining owing to habitat degradation caused by annual fires and over-hunting, but it is not considered threatened at present.