Red grouse (Lagopus lagopus scoticus) walking, Cairngorm National Park, Highlands, Scotland

Grouse

Grouse are medium to large-sized ‘gamebirds’, somewhat partridge-like, with rounded bodies, short, broad wings and small heads with stout, arched bills.

They feed on shoots, buds and seeds of small shrubs and herbs. Red grouse are especially associated with heather; black grouse prefer a mixture of heather, rushy areas, rough grass and woodland edge; capercaillies survive best where pine woodland intermingles with boggy heath and plentiful supplies of bilberry, cranberry and crowberry. There are several other non-UK species in North America, Europe and Asia.

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