Sunday, January 19, 2014

Sharp-tailed Grouse photoshoot

Back near the start of the year I did a little cruise over to the Michigan side to try for some year birds, and to try to find some owls. While I failed to find any owls (including the usually reliable Snowys in Rudyard), I did pick up some goodies for the year such as Bohemian Waxwing, Northern Shrike, Snow Bunting and Sharp-tailed Grouse. We are lucky here in the Sault to have a homeowner who runs a great feeder setup next to some prime Sharp-tail habitat and therefore gets these grouse at their feeder on a reliable basis. As I pulled up, 7 Sharp-tailed Grouse quickly scattered from under the feeder, with 6 of them running further back into the cover of some spruce trees. The 7th bird ran up to the edge of the road and then sat there for about 5 minutes while I clicked away (using the car as a blind), and it even came out on the road to pick grit about 15 feet from me before it took off over the house! In the meantime the other 6 grouse had come out from hiding and were feeding again but decided they'd better get out of there once the 7th bird flushed.

Sauntering up the embankment toward me

Gave me a quick once-over

Then settled in for a bit

Eventually it wandered out onto the road


Hmmm maybe standing on the road isn't the best idea... After this shot it was up, up and away

No comments: