The Ruffed Grouse is a popular game species in Tennessee and population numbers appear to be stable. This plump grouse has a cocky crest and a … Though these birds go unseen by many, the familiar drumming performed by males, especially in spring, keys people into their presence. It has a small crest on top of its head with reddish or grey-brown coloring. Ruffed grouse have been particularly susceptible to the effects of the disease. The ruffed grouse population has a cycle, and follows the cycle no matter how much or how little hunting there is. The genus Bonasa was applied by British naturalist John Francis Stephens in 1819. The ruffed grouse (Bonasa umbellus) is a medium-sized grouse occurring in forests from the Appalachian Mountains across Canada to Alaska. Or take action immediately with one of our current campaigns below: The Audubon Bird Guide is a free and complete field guide to more than 800 species of North American birds, right in your pocket. According to nature writer Don L. Johnson: More than any other characteristic, it is the ruffed grouse's ability to thrive on a wide range of foods that has allowed it to adapt to such a wide and varied range of habitat on this continent. This is because the grouse spends most of its time in thick brush, aspen stands, and second growth pines. A Michigan banding program enlists off-season sportsmen and women to locate the little "timberdoodles" and gather valuable conservation data. Both genders are similarly marked and sized, making them difficult to tell apart, even in hand. The "gray" phase ruffed grouse has a gray tail, and the "red" phase ruffed grouse has a rufous-colored (red-brown) tail. The ruffed grouse is a hardy bird which thrives during severe winters that decimate flocks of quail, pheasants, and turkeys. There are all sorts of intergrades between the most typical morphs; warmer and more humid conditions favor browner birds in general. The Pennsylvania Game Commission has launched a new tool to identify prime ruffed grouse recovery areas for groups working to restore habitat for Pennsylvania’s state bird… Choose a temperature scenario below to see which threats will affect this species as warming increases. Until recently, this and the Dusky Grouse were combined as one species, under the name Blue Grouse. The state Department of … It is the only species in the genus Bonasa. Alder lowlands and patches of gray dogwood are especially attractive to ruffed grouse in summer and fall. Several different survey efforts (U.S. Geological Survey's Breeding Bird Survey, New York State Breeding Bird Atlas) support what grouse hunters have know for a long time. Let us send you the latest in bird and conservation news. Males and females look similar, but females have a shorter crest and tail. The ruffs are on the sides of the neck in both sexes. Whenever anyone thinks of bird hunting in Maine, the thick, young covers that ruffed grouse inhabit automatically come to mind—and rightfully so. The subspecies that inhabits Maine is the St. Lawrence or Canada ruffed grouse. The subspecies that inhabits Maine is the St. Lawrence or Canada ruffed grouse. Another contained a small snake.. Description - female: same as the male, though the neck ruff and tail band are not as defined. A ruffed grouse lives most of its life within just a few acres. Even in thick woods this can be heard for a .25 miles (0.40 km) or more. Text © Kenn Kaufman, adapted from Membership benefits include one year of Audubon magazine and the latest on birds and their habitats. Your support helps secure a future for birds at risk. Breeding Bird Survey data indicate that ruffed grouse populations in New York have declined by more than 75% since the 1960s, or about … There is much white on the underside and flanks, and overall the birds have a variegated appearance; the throat is often distinctly lighter. The entire state is covered with them from top to bottom thanks to a healthy logging industry that has been rotation cutting these forests for over 100 years. For example, the diet of a ruffed grouse in northern Wisconsin is going to change significantly once the weather gets cold & covered with snow. In northern Idaho, ruffed grouse are the most common forest grouse. Pennsylvania State Game Bird Ruffed Grouse aka "partridge" (Bonasa umbellus)Adopted on June 22, 1931.  Habitat loss has been a concern for the species, but the introduction of the West Nile virus has been seen to be further increasing mortality. Basically all we’re trying to say here is that you’ll have to use some common sense when it comes to narrowing down what foo… Help power unparalleled conservation work for birds across the Americas, Stay informed on important news about birds and their habitats, Receive reduced or free admission across our network of centers and sanctuaries, Access a free guide of more than 800 species of North American birds, Discover the impacts of climate change on birds and their habitats, Learn more about the birds you love through audio clips, stunning photography, and in-depth text.  Ruffed grouse is the preferred common name because it applies only to this species. Misleading vernacular names abound, however, and it is often called partridge (sometimes rendered pa'tridge, or shortened to pat), pheasant, or prairie chicken, all of which are properly applied to other birds. It is non-migratory. During winter, ruffed grouse spend nearly all of their time in snow burrows to stay warm and avoid predators. Although most abundant in northern forests, good numbers exist throughout the state. A brown or gray-brown, chicken-like bird with slight crest, fan-shaped, black-banded tail, barred flanks, and black "ruffs" on sides of neck. Dogs may also be used.  He classified it as Tetrao umbellus, placing it in a subfamily with Eurasian grouse. State bird of: Pennsylvania: Description: The ruffed grouse comes in two phases, each identified by the color of its tail. The ruffed grouse, known for its signature wing drumming in the spring woods, and speedy, explosive flushes when startled, has …  Ruffed grouse have two distinct morphs: grey and brown. If discovered when thus perched,it is very easily shot. Deciduous and mixed forests, especially those with scattered clearings and dense undergrowth; overgrown pastures. Shipped with USPS Priority Mail. “Ruffed Grouse ". Some forest birds like Ruffed Grouse, Mountain Quail, Dusky Grouse, and Sooty Grouse will eat cracked corn, if you live in such an area. Ruffed Grouse are early successional forest specialists. It is also very hard to detect a foraging grouse bobbing about in the thicket due to their camouflage. The female often has a broken subterminal tail band, while males tend to have unbroken tail bands, though the opposite of either can occur.