Providing evidence to improve practice

Individual study: Hand-reared gray partridges Perdix perdix take-off at a lower angle and slower speed than wild-caught birds in an ex situ experiment

Published source details

Putaala A., Oksa J., Rintamaki H. & Hissa R. (1997) Effects of Hand-Rearing and Radiotransmitters on Flight of Gray Partridge. The Journal of Wildlife Management, 61, 1345-1351


Hand-rearing is a possible method to increase reproductive productivity in endangered species. However, it is possible that some species will be more vulnerable to predation if they are hand-reared. This study investigates this possibility with gray partridge Perdix perdix.



A total of 12 hand-reared partridges and 19 wild birds (all juveniles) were measured as they attempted to take off. The angle of climb and the climbing rate were both measured.

Hand-reared birds were housed in large outdoor pens and fed on commercial chicken feed and grain before the experiment. Wild birds were caught 1-11 days before the experiment.




Hand-reared birds took flight with a shallower takeoff angle (average of 31o tested on 12 birds) and climbed more slowly (climbing rate of 1.8 m/s for 11 birds) than wild-caught birds (average 44o for 19 birds tested and 2.7 m/s for 18 birds), possibly increasing the risk of predation.

Note: If using or referring to this published study, please read and quote the original paper.