The dashing, male Spruce Grouse has bright red combs above each eye but, unlike our other grouse, he has no throat patch to impress the hens with in spring. Their diet consists of mostly spruce and pine needles. Because they have to eat so many more needles in winter, their digestive tract elongates by almost 40%, then shrinks back to normal length in spring.
It's easy to see where the Ruffed Grouse gets its name. When defending his territory or courting a hen, the male grouse erects a ruffle of black feathers around his neck while fanning his tail.
Endangered masked bobwhite males wear russet breast feathers and a white eye line over a black mask. They were discovered in the southwestern U.S. by American biologists in the early 1900's, but they quickly disappeared from their desert grassland habitat due to fire suppression and overgrazing by introduced livestock. A remnant population discovered in Mexico in the 1950's was used to start several captive breeding populations. Currently, all known masked bobwhite north of the border survive only in captivity, none in the wild.