Budding Gardeners 

                                                    
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Child drawing   Events for children in Indiana can be found on the
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Here's a fun, informative and educational garden or
nature drawing for children, our Budding Gardeners,
to color and learn about:

 
 
 

The most notable characteristic of the Ruffed Grouse (Bonasa umbellus) isn't how they look -- it's how they sound. In the spring and a little in the fall, the male ruffed grouse beats the air with his wings to make a loud drumming sound. It's such a deep sound that you feel it more than hear it. He does this to show where his territory is and to attract females.

Another characteristic of this bird is their ability to stay perfectly still if they are threatened. Only when the predator (or unknowing hiker) is within a few feet of the grouse will it leave cover and blast into the air in a flurry of wings. The grouse's cryptic coloration of gray and brown mottled with dark and light spots, and slow, deliberate walk make it virtually invisible. In winter, the Ruffed Grouse may dive into soft snow to spend the night. Falling snow can hide the evidence of its entry. A grouse bursting at one's feet from flat snow covered ground can be quite startling.

The toes of Ruffed Grouse grow projections off their sides in winter, making them look like combs. The projections are believed to act as snowshoes to help the grouse walk across snow.

Its summer range will find it a resident in the deciduous forests in central Alaska, throughout Canada, and southward to northern California, Utah, and northern Alabama; also having some scattered disconnected populations, some of which were human introductions. The Aspen woodlands and early succession mixed deciduous forests, with small clearings are its habitat. Their food is buds, twigs, catkins, leaves, ferns, soft fruits, acorns, and some insects. Their nest is a bowl-like depression in dead leaves and vegetation on the ground, typically at the base of a tree, stump, or boulder.


Tracks of Ruffed Grouse

Click on pictures to enlarge

Source:  Richard Headstrom,
Dover Publications,
& the Internet


Ruffed Grouse


 
This page is updated monthly.
 
Revised:  December 25, 2017