Ruffed grouse resting on a branch in Algonquin Provincial Park, Ont.
© Jim Cumming/Getty Image
Posing tall and strong
Native to forests rich in aspens and poplars across Canada and the U.S., the ruffed grouse are non-migratory birds who spend their entire lives in the same area. Depending on the habitat they are in, their feathers can range in colour from grey to red as a means of camouflage to protect themselves from predators. They get their name from the ruff of dark feathers on their neck. Despite being primarily ground-dwelling birds, ruffed grouse can be quite the acrobatic fliers when needed. They excel at flying in short spurts and are skilled at making sharp twists and turns when navigating through thick deciduous forests. How’s that for beauty and brawn?