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Editorial: Bring back the quail

Gloucester County resident Blair Farinholt has organized an effort to bring back the bobwhite quail, a popular and beloved species whose numbers are in steep decline.

The problem, according to authorities, is all about habitat loss … close grass cutting of open areas, elimination of hedgerows, cultivation of farmland to the very edge of ability. The result is a deficiency of places where the bobwhite loves to nest, and the loss of native vegetation that it loves to eat.

There is a solid reason to be optimistic about this: if the bobwhite quail habitat effort takes off, it is believed the birds will follow. And there is solid precedent for the plan.

In 1975, the Northern Neck Audubon Society began to build bluebird nesting boxes, selling them at many outlets on the Middle Peninsula and Northern Neck. People bought them; they still buy them; and the bluebird, which had become a very rare sighting here, became numerous again.

In another case, the Coast Guard stopped clean...

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