Monday, 17 September 2012

The Snow Grouse (Ptarmigan)

General Information:

One of the most appealing animals found in this country is the Snow Grouse. During the last ice age, the species was widespread, but now it is endangered. These attractice creatures only live in high mountains and are perfectly adapted for life in cold districts, having fur on their legs. They live on a diet of various seeds, leaves and alpine berries. Insects are often eaten by the developing young. Though they are birds, they are not good at flying. Their homes are in communities of creeping pines. The Snow Grouse are solitary vreatures and it is rare to see a male & female together. The males have red
English: Rock Ptarmigan(Lagopus mutus japonicu...
English: Rock Ptarmigan(Lagopus mutus japonicus) Female with winter fether in Mount Kogouchi 日本語: 雷鳥(雌・冬毛) 小河内岳にて (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
combs above their eyes and their song is a loud croaking.

Observing Snow Grouse:

Catching sight of a Snow Grouse in the wild is quite a challenge, as they are rather secretive animals. Those that live in high mountains are mostly active in the cool shade of trees. Mountain climbers say they might be seen in misty weather, which makes it very difficult to see them. The best place to see a Snow Grouse in this country is in the Japan Alps. If you are fortunate, you will be rewarded with a sight of these fascinating birds.

Posted by Atsuko (CAE class)