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(vertebrate zoology)
The ptarmigans and grouse, a family of upland game birds in the order Galliformes characterized by rounded tails and wings and feathered nostrils.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



(grouse), a family of birds of the order Galliformes. The Tetraonidae range from 30 to 110 cm in length and from 0.4 to 6.5 kg in weight. The body is plump. The nostrils are feathered. The legs, and sometimes the toes, are feathered and not spurred. In many species, the sexes are unlike in size and coloration.

There are 18 species of Tetraonidae, distributed in Europe, Asia, and North America. In winter the Tetraonidae keep to a limited area or range for food. They are preeminently birds of the forest, but some species inhabit valleys, mountain tundra, and steppes. Many species are polygamous. The nests are built on the ground or, in some species, in trees. A clutch contains from four to 16 eggs. The female incubates the eggs and rears the young. The diet consists of vegetable matter, such as shoots, buds, flowers, berries, and seeds. Young birds consume insects as well. The Tetraonidae are valuable game birds.

Eight species of Tetraonidae are found in the USSR—willow grouse (Lagopus lagopus), ptarmigan (Lagopus mutus). black grouse (Lyrurus tetrix). Caucasian blackcock (Lyrurus mloko-siewiczi). capercaillie (Tetrao urogallus). black-billed capercaillie (Tetrao parvirostris). hazel hen (Tetrastes bonasia). and Siberian spruce grouse (Falcipennis falcipennis).


Ptitsy Sovetskogo Soiuza, vol. 4. Edited by G. P. Dement’ev and N. A. Gladkov. Moscow, 1952.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
This member of the grouse family (Tetraonidae) is one of the few birds that can be considered to be typical of the taiga and restricted to it, as its range coincides closely with the belt of conifer forests running across North America.
203 The capercaillie (Tetrao urogallus) is one of the members of the grouse family (Tetraonidae) that is found furthest north (see fig.
Ecological energetics of palearctic tetraonidae in relation to chemical composition and digestibility of their winter diets.
2001: Population cycles in birds of the grouse family (Tetraonidae).--Advances in Ecological Research 32: 53-111.
Survival of juveniles from hatching until recruitment to the breeding population in the following year is a critical determinant of population growth in many species of grouse (Tetraonidae; Sandercock et al.
Thus 'grouse biology' is not a scientific discipline, but rather the natural communication system of people who study birds of the grouse family Tetraonidae. Although grouse biologists have no dedicated journal equivalent to for example the Journal of Raptor Research, they can meet triennially at the International Grouse Symposia.
Order Galliformes, Part 2, Family Tetraonidae. Fauna of the USSR Volume 3.