If you’ve ever encountered a seemingly “tame” grouse of some kind in the woods, this might be the reason why.
Lisa Williams, grouse biologist for the Pennsylvania Game Commission speaks to the phenomenon of so-called tame grouse that many hunters and outdoorsmen have encountered over the years.
Stating that there are two probable causes for this odd behavior in grouse, a genetic throwback or hyper territoriality, Ms. Williams attempts to explain the difference and why this behavior happens.
Biologist Williams went on to explain that the grouse of 250 years ago were known as “fool hens” because they were so typically easy to hunt by the original settlers.
Modern hunters know better since grouse are so wary and have such incredible escape powers.
Even at that, many of us have encountered one of these birds that just seem to want a friend. Ms. Williams explained that these birds may be hyper territorial and really are just defending their space.
I certainly lean towards the education and experience of a veteran game biologist, but I’ve seen birds do this and though they don’t seem aggressive in any way, I don’t look like another grouse either.
What do you think, are these grouse just friendly, or are they defending their territory?