bob·​white ˈbäb-ˈ(h)wīt How to pronounce bobwhite (audio)
: any of a genus (Colinus) of New World quail
especially : a popular game bird (C. virginianus) of eastern and central North America having mottled chiefly reddish-brown plumage

Examples of bobwhite in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Now, the governor is trying to bring back the northern bobwhite, also known simply as quail, to the Mountain State by reintroducing 21,000 of them this year in the state’s biggest repopulation campaign to date. Kris Maher, WSJ, 26 Sep. 2022 Craig is sure enough a bird dog man, and has hunted everything from grouse in Utah to ducks in Arkansas to wild bobwhite quail here in Georgia. Durrell Smith, Outdoor Life, 29 Dec. 2020 The current efforts not only will result in the return of the bobwhite, but also will aid songbirds and pollinators. Rex Nelson, Arkansas Online, 27 Dec. 2020 But eventually Ruger flushed a poor-flying bobwhite and my friend managed to get off a quick shot. Durrell Smith, Outdoor Life, 20 Nov. 2020 My favorite, a portrait of a Brittany with a bobwhite in her mouth, is missing. Natalie Krebs, Field & Stream, 5 Oct. 2020 The efforts of hunters haven’t been enough to slow the decline, and in many places there are no longer enough northern bobwhites to hunt. Jordan Sillars, National Review, 23 Nov. 2019 Speaking of quail, bobwhites and pheasants often inhabit the same areas. Jarrod Spilger, Field & Stream, 23 Dec. 2019 Yet when flung toward everything from bobwhites to ringnecks, the 28 gauge seems to bring home the bacon. Ron Spomer, Outdoor Life, 11 Dec. 2019 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'bobwhite.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History



First Known Use

1819, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of bobwhite was in 1819

Dictionary Entries Near bobwhite

Cite this Entry

“Bobwhite.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 30 Sep. 2023.

Kids Definition


bob·​white (ˈ)bäb-ˈhwīt How to pronounce bobwhite (audio)
: any of several American quails
especially : a gray, white, and reddish game bird of the eastern and central U.S.

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