Body length: 35-40 cm
Body mass: 350-450 g
Appearance: camouflaged grey-brown, though with paler belly and breast (both also dark-spotted), grey rump and black bib in males.
This forest grouse is first and foremost a bird of mountain forests, though also found in some large lowland complexes, i.a. Augustowska and Białowieża. Exacting habitat requirements include the presence of a stream, as well as places to take sand-baths and ingest grit. Diet seasonal, with insects, herbs and fruit taken in spring and summer, acorns, beech nuts, rowan and juniper berries in autumn, and fallen conifer and ash seeds in winter. Tree buds also eaten.
Monogamous. Plumage dense, accounting for 20% of autumn body mass. Nests on ground, where it spends much time, but nevertheless notoriously hard to spot.
A resident and largely sedentary game bird.
Descriptions drawing on content of Ptaki Polski (“Birds of Poland”) - a book authored by Andrzej G. Kruszewicz, and published by MULTICO Oficyna Wydawnicza Sp. z o.o.