Partridges are highly prized small to medium sized, plump bodied game birds related to pheasants and native to Europe, Asia and Africa.
The use of the name partridge in the U.S. is very confusing. In varying parts of the country, the name Partridge is applied to the Bob White, the Quail and the Ruffed Grouse.
There are more than 45 different species, the 2 main varieties being the gray partridge (Perdrix perdrix) and the red-legged partridge (Alectoris rufa). They weigh from 1 to 3 pounds and are 6 to 18 in. long.
Partridges were introduced to North America in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
There are 8,567 people in the U.S. listed on whitepages.com with the last name 'Partridge'
(Mark Morton, 'Gastronomica', Fall 2010)
Some Partridge Recipes:
Broiled Partridges (1904)
Partridge Stuffed with Raisins