Thursday, May 5, 2016
Spruce Grouse, Superior National Forest
Last night I had the good fortune of finally coming across a Spruce Grouse! I have known for a long time that these birds have been in the forest of northeast Minnesota, but until last night I had never seen one before. I don't know if we have them in Grand Portage, as I still have not seen one here. This one was near the intersection of the forest roads known as The Grade and Sawbill Trail, which is closer to Tofte, MN.
This guy sure did not mind posing for the camera. I was driving down The Grade when I saw him on the side of the road. At first I didn't slow down because I thought it was another Ruffed Grouse (of which I had already seen several throughout the day). As I drove past, though, I realized it was a Spruce Grouse. I had to stop and walk back towards him to get his photograph. As I approached him on foot he hopped up into some trees and promptly started to put on a display, puffing up his chest and every now and then fanning out his tail feathers. What a beautiful bird! Seeing him really made my day!