Well-Known Partridge Songs

25 August, 2020
This bird has very varied sounds, and each has a different function; the usual one is the call, although its 'language' or way of communicating is varied, and is done through different peculiar 'notes'

Well-known partridge songs are very appreciated among experts and lovers of the wild bird kingdom. This little bird makes very particular sounds, which makes its natural song unique and attractive. 

Well-known partridge songs: the call

Birds emit various sounds that perform different functions in their communication and social positioning. Therefore, when we say ‘the song of the partridge’, we’re referring to the most recognized type of song that this species emits. 

In this case, the partridge’s typical sound that allows us to easily identify it is the so-called ‘call’. It’s a very powerful sound, from which the bird shows its strength, power, and personality. This sound would perform a function similar to a presentation. An adult partridge’s call usually has three to eight strokes, and is very easy to recognize. 

Other well-known partridge songs

A partridge.

Partridges are recognizably very vocal birds that emit a great range of characteristic sounds. Below is a summary of the different sounds and their functions: 

  • The first has a double function. When males target each other, it’s a challenge song. But when the male devotes himself to a female, it’s a love song used to attract attention and invite. The challenge song is a louder and more aggressive sound, totally different from the love song.
  • The second song consists of loud, sharp beats, which usually resembles the sound of kisses. Again, this call has a double social function. For males, it’s a maximum challenge call, but dedicated to a female it’s an intimate invitation. Normally, males use this sound after “the call”. 
  • The next song is almost identical to their most-used call. However, it’s a much lower and deeper sound. They usually use it before the main call, to mark the start of their stand, or at the end of the evening. 
  • Another of their songs sounds very similar to a cat’s meow. According to experts, partridges use this to fully express “the call”. It’s very rare to hear this among field partridges, but it’s common in other species. 
  • They have another song that they use when they’re driven away from somewhere and have to quickly fly away.
  • They also have a song that is used as a distinction call, so they rarely use it. It sounds similar to a very powerful “ti-ti-ti-ti…”. It’s also got a double function in the partridge’s social structure. On one hand, it’s a powerful love call, being infallible to attract females. But, on rare occasions, it can be used to summon a male to challenge him. 

Songs linked to emotion 

One of their songs can be considered a repetitive emission. This is the sound that partridges make when feeding and is very similar to a “gu-gu, gu-gu, gu-gu…”. 

A partridge in the distance.

Field partridges see it as a sign that they can come and feed with peace of mind. 

Partridges have another song that they use when they recognize a threat and to alert and/or ask for help. It’s fast and effective. Other partridges will immediately be still and silent upon hearing it.  

Many experts consider this final song the most unpleasant partridge song. It sounds like “ach, ach, ach, ach, ach…”, that they broadcast repeatedly and in a very exasperating way. Partridges use it to express irritation, anger, or discomfort. 

Silence

In addition to the above sounds, we must mention the ‘silence’ that marks the pauses in partridge songs. Just as we perform very expressive pauses in our verbal and body language, partridges alternate their social communication with these ‘silences’.