Living Bird Magazine
White-tailed PtarmiganLagopus leucura
- ORDER: Galliformes
- FAMILY: Phasianidae
The smallest grouse in North America, the White-tailed Ptarmigan inhabits alpine regions from Alaska to New Mexico. It has numerous adaptations to its severe habitat, including feathered toes, highly cryptic plumage, and an energy-conserving daily regime.More ID Info
- Lagópodo coliblanco (Spanish)
- Lagopède à queue blanche (French)
- Cool Facts
- The White-tailed Ptarmigan leads a very sedentary lifestyle in winter, conserving precious energy by avoiding flight and often roosting in snow banks.
- In winter, the White-tailed Ptarmigan defecates an average of 49 times overnight.
- Warm weather may stress the White-tailed Ptarmigan. It can be seen bathing in snow when the temperature is higher than 21° C (70° F).