Colored with Bright
are popular game birds.
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Grouse is the common name for 17 species of birds of the pheasant
family. The largest North American grouse is the white tailed ptarmigan
about 12 1/2 inches.
In most species the genders differ in color, but none have truly bright
plumage. Bright colors are limited to red or yellow comb like
structures over the eyes, expanded during the breeding season,
or sacs of skin that inflate like balloons during courtship
The Ruffed Grouse is also known as partridge or pat, it is the most
widely distributed game bird in North America.
Both genders are brownish with ragged head crests, dark neck ruffs and
fan shaped tails with a broad black band near the tip. The band
on the female is usually broken on the central feathers,
unbroken on the male.
Grouse with rusty red tails are more common in the south and gray
tailed birds more common in the north.
Ruffed grouse lay 9 to 12 eggs, buff colored with brown spots.
Incubation is by the female, about 24 days. If a nest is accidentally
discovered, the female will usually re-nest elsewhere.
Mating systems are elaborate in most grouse, and in many the
males are polygamous, meeting in the spring at certain arenas
where they compete for mates.
The feathers are larger in males than in females, and are spread
widely during courtship displays, when the male struts on a
Ruffed grouse are famous for the springtime drumming of the males, a
sound produced by the beating of the wings against the air
as the male stands erect.
Picture Ruffed Grouse during Courting
Grouse belong to the family Phasianidae of the order Galliformes.
Types of North American Grouse Include:
Greater Prairie Chicken
Lesser Prairie Chicken
Sharp Tailed Grouse
White Tailed Ptarmigan
More about Birds of North America
Vividly Colored Grouse and Pheasant Calendars
Exceptionally Charming Stuffed Plush Pheasants and Grouse