Great Basin Naturalist


We examined crop contents of 217 Gray Partridge (Perdix perdix) collected during a two-year period in eastern South Dakota. Row crop grains (corn, sunflowers) dominated late fall, winter, and spring diets. Small grains (oats, barley, wheat, rye) were rarely consumed although fields of small grains were widely available. During a severe winter when waste row crop grains were buried by snow, partridge consumed more leafy vegetation. Insects dominated the early summer diet, while foxtail (Setaria spp.) seeds were a major late summer and early fall food.