Sharp-tailed Grouse

photo by Bryant Olsen CC BY-NC

Sharp-tailed Grouse are spotted, brown and white, chicken-like birds (15-19 in). Their tail feathers are narrow and pointed with white edges.

Sharp-tailed Grouse are found in southwestern Canada and the northern United States. They live in open, grassy areas during the summer and sheltered, wooded areas during the winter. Their diet includes seeds, buds, and leaves as well as insects, berries, and grains.

Could it be? Ring-necked Pheasant are larger and don't have narrow, pointed, white-edged tail feathers.

Did you know? Up to two dozen males perform a courtship display on a group breeding ground called a lek. During the mating dance, the males spread their wings, holding their tail up straight and shaking it while they dance in a circle. Their large purple neck sacs are inflated and they make popping or whistling sounds.

See Also: Blue Grouse, Greater Sage-Grouse, Ruffed Grouse, Spruce Grouse