We described 15 Ruffed Grouse (Bonasa umbellus) drumming logs and adjacent habitat within Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming. Drumming logs and adjacent habitat differed from 30 random non-drumming sites. Drumming logs had fewer limbs (8; P = 0.003) and a smaller percentage of bark remaining (12%; P = 0.0001). These logs were in advanced stages of decay but were still firm to the touch. Additionally, drumming logs were found close to clearings but in areas with increased amounts of undergrowth and mature trees. Adjacent habitat analysis (0.04-ha circular plot centered on logs) indicated drumming locations had significantly greater average canopy height, more vegetative cover consisting of conifer and total canopy cover, and more vertical foliage between 0.3 m and 3.0 m in height. Adjacent habitat was in advanced stages of maturity as indicated by significant numbers of both large-diameter logs and large-diameter lodgepole pine (Pinus contorta) and quaking aspen (Populus tremuloides) snags. Tree species dominating the canopy and subcanopy were large-diameter Engelmann spruce (Picea engelmannii), lodgepole pine, and quaking aspen. Subalpine fir (Abies lasiocarpa) and quaking aspen saplings were more numerous at used sites. Ruffed Grouse drummed in coniferous areas within close proximity of quaking aspen.
Additional publication details
Ruffed grouse (Bonasa umbellus) drumming log and habitat use in Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming