972. Tetrao urogallus

972. Capercailly.
Tetrao urogallus, Linn. Syst. Nat. i. p. 273 (1766) ; Naum. vi. p. 277, Taf. 154, 155 ; Hewitson, i. p. 277, pl. lxix. fig. 2 ; Gould, B. of E. iv. pl. 248 ; id. B. of Gt. Brit. iv. pl. 5 ; Dresser, vii. p. 223, pls. 489 fig. 2, 490 ; Ogilvie Grant, Cat. B. Br. Mus. xxii. p. 60 ; Saunders, p. 491 ; Lilford, iv. p. 101, pl. 44.
Coq de bruyere, French ; Gran Gallo de bosque, Span. ; Gallo cedrone, Ital. ; Auerhahn male and -huhn female, German ; Tjur, Dan. ; Tiur male, Roj female, Norweg. ; Tjader, Swed. ; Cukca male, Koappil female, Lapp. ; Metso male, Koppelo female, Finn. ; Glouhar male, Kopoluha female, Russ.
Male ad. (Sweden). Head and neck slate-grey narrowly barred with black ; chin-feathers much elongated, black glossed with purple ; back, scapulars, and wing-coverts dark reddish brown vermiculated with black ; rump and upper tail-coverts black vermiculated with greyish white, the latter tipped with white ; tail rounded, black, some of the feathers marbled with white, which forms an irregular band ; quills brown externally marbled with pale sandy brown ; breast and under parts black, the former glossed with green ; abdomen blotched with white ; under tail-coverts marked and tipped with white ; tarsi feathered to the feet ; feet dull brown ; bill whitish horn ; iris brown. Culmen 2.5, wing 14.8, tail 11.0, tarsus 3.0 inch. The female is rather smaller, has the head, neck, and upper parts and tail pale rusty red barred with black, many of the feathers tipped with white ; tail tipped with white ; chin, sides of head, neck, and breast pale rufous, the lower neck spotted with black ; rest of under parts pale rufous sparingly barred with black, and broadly tipped with white ; vent and tarsi whitish ; bill dull horn, paler at the base below.
Hab. The pine forests of Scandinavia, North Russia, extinct but introduced into Scotland, the Pyrenees, Alps, and Car¬pathians ; North Asia, east to Lake Baikal, south to the Altai and north-eastern Turkestan.
Inhabits pine woods and feeds on tender conifer shoots, berries, &c. The pairing game, or play (lek in Swedish), com¬mences early in spring, when the male, with drooping wings, expanded and erected tail, and ruffled feathers, seated either on a tree or strutting on the ground, utters his call, pellep, pellep, pellep,—Klickop—hede, hede, hede, which is answered by a croak¬ing note, gock, gock, gock, by the female, and during this season the males light furiously for the possession of the females, who after the pairing season retire to their breeding places. The nest is a mere depression scraped in the ground under a tree or bush, and the eggs, 6 to 12 or 15 in number, are de¬posited early in May, and are dirty yellowish spotted and blotched with light brown and measure about 2.7 by 1.65.
Hybrids between Tetrao tetrix and T. urogallus are not uncommon, but those between Phasianus colchicus and T. urogallus, and Lagopus albus and T. urogallus are much rarer.

A Manual Of Palaearctic Birds
Dresser, Henry Eeles. A Manual of Palaearctic Birds. Vol. 2. 1903.
Title in Book: 
972. Tetrao urogallus
Book Author: 
H. E. Dresser
Page No: 
Common name: 
Western Capercaillie
Tetrao urogallus
Vol. 2

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