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I found it in the woods on May 29, 2006. The first to name it gets fame on and $5 off any of Bryan’s outings or workshops. Read on for the answer.

We have a winner: Nancy (the first comment below), who named this as the eye of a Spruce Grouse, the boreal cousin of Ruffed Grouse here in the East. Nancy was not alone – but she was first. Many folks got this one. And all the incorrect answers were worthy nonetheless. Thanks, everyone! Stay tuned for pain and misery with the next dispatch of “What’s This?”

Spruce Grouse

Spruce Grouse / © Bryan Pfeiffer

  1. Chris Pratt says:

    I just saw one today too. Scared the hell out of me.

  2. Sonny Boy Williamson says:

    Must be the goose of spruce.

  3. Mark C. says:

    Oh, and if I could have the birding trip to Papua New Guinea instead of $5 off a workshop, that’d be awesome. Thanks!

  4. Mark C. says:

    Spruce grouse!!!!

  5. Liz Lackey says:

    We just saw 3 of these today at Moose Bog on a NBNC field trip! Cool. And your close up photo answers a question I had: is the red color above the eye skin or feathers. I was betting it was skin, as these are related to chickens. And I see that it is in fact skin. BTW it is a Spruce Grouse male.

  6. Emily Marie says:

    A male Spruce Grouse.

  7. Beth barndt says:

    Rock Ptarmigan?

  8. Paul says:

    Spruce Grouse

  9. Nimothy J. Tewcomb says:

    It’s the elusive Adobe Red Eye Tool RGB Warbler. Known for their raucous barroom brawls and resulting spectacular shiners, these males often seek out magenta-reducing females. Look for them in Barre on Saturday nights.

  10. Dan Towner says:

    Black-billed cuckoo?

  11. Larry Levine says:

    Spruce Grouse?

  12. Is it a ruffed grouse?

  13. Kristen Lindquist says:

    Spruce Grouse eye?

  14. Sue Cloutier says:

    Spruce Grouse

  15. Judy Brook says:

    This is a spruce grouse. Hope we see its siblings when we head to the Connecticut Lakes after Quimby.


  16. Leigh Steele says:

    Spruce Grouse

  17. Dudley Carlson says:

    How about Spruce Grouse? Looks like a Ptarmigan, but you’re in VT, so I’d put my money on grouse. Amazing shot!

  18. Bob Grobe says:

    Falcipennis canadensis. adult male.

  19. Nancy says:

    Spruce grouse?

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