From a morphological point of view, the Italian gray partridge has a smaller average size than the central European partridge and a darker general colouration, with a prevalence of blackish-brown shades compared to the rusty red tones typical of the other strains.
These differences are appreciable in both females and males, although more frequently in the latter. Furthermore, still in the male, the spot in the center of the chest always has a typical horseshoe shape and a dark brown colour. Obviously the variability in the various subjects is high and the certainty is always and only given by the result of the genetic analyses.
In the photo, taken from the National Action Plan for Partridge published by Ispra: on the left, a male partridge of Italian stock dating back to the early 1900s and, on the right, a male partridge of central European origin.