A male Spruce Grouse. Richard Baesten, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
What does a Spruce Grouse look like?
The Spruce Grouse is a medium size bird. They grow to be 16 to 19 inches tall, and weigh about 1 pound. They have short bills and short tales. Males are gray with a black neck, bellies that have black and white bars, and little red near their eyes. Females are mottled brown with black and white bars on their feathers.
Where does it live?
Spruce Grouses can be found throughout the Boreal forest. They like to live in coniferous forests with dense undergrowth. They especially like living near black spruce and jack pine trees.
What does a Spruce Grouse eat?
Spruce Grouse eat buds and needles of conifers in the winter. In the summer, they also eat seeds, green plants, berries, and insects.
Spruce Grouse Camouflage
The plumage of the Spruce Grouse is great camouflage. This helps them hide from predators. When a predator is near, the Spruce Grouse will freeze and hold perfectly still so the predator cannot see it. Animals that eat Spruce Grouse are owls, goshawks, martens, fishers, and foxes.
Map of Spruce Grouse range. Cephas
A female Spruce Grouse. Dave Menke, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
References include the above links.
Vanner, Michael. The Complete Encyclopedia of North American Birds. Bath, UK: Parragon Publishing, 2005.