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Greater Sage-Grouse

Centrocercus urophasianus ORDER: GALLIFORMES FAMILY: PHASIANIDAE

IUCN Conservation Status: Near Threatened

A bird of the open sagebrush plains, the Greater Sage-Grouse is the largest grouse species in North America.

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At a GlanceHelp

Measurements
Both Sexes
Length
22–29.5 in
56–75 cm
Weight
49.4–102.3 oz
1400–2900 g
Other Names
  • Tétras des armoises (French)

Cool Facts

  • Like many other grouse species, the Greater Sage-Grouse male plays no role in the raising of the young. Males display on dancing grounds known as leks. Females visit the leks to obtain matings, and then go off to raise their brood by themselves.
  • Traditional lekking grounds may be used for years.
  • Although many male Greater Sage-Grouse may display at a lek, only one or two males get picked by a majority of the females for mating.

Habitat


Grassland

Foothills, plains, and mountain slopes where sagebrush is present.

Food


Plants

Leaves, buds, stems, flowers, fruit, and insects.

Nesting

Nesting Facts
Clutch Size
6–13 eggs
Condition at Hatching
Downy and able to follow mother.
Nest Placement

Ground

Behavior


Ground Forager

Multiple males display at group display site, known as a lek.

Conservation

status via IUCN

Near Threatened

Populations declining; has disappeared from a number of states and provinces.

Credits

  • Schroeder, M. A., J. R. Young, and C. E. Braun. 1999. Sage Grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus). In The Birds of North America, No. 425 (A. Poole and F. Gill, eds.). The Birds of North America, Inc., Philadelphia, PA.