Great Basin Naturalist


Winter habitat use and food habits of Blue Grouse (Dendragapus obscurus) were studied in an isolated Utah desert mountain range that contained little typical Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii) winter habitat. Habitat use was concentrated in the Douglas-fir and pinyon (Pinus edulis)–juniper (Juniperus spp.) habitat. Douglas-fir and pinyon pine were the most consumed foods. Other foods that represented >15% of the composition of an individual fecal sample were limber pine (Pinus flexilis), mahogany (Cercocarpus ledifoliu), juniper, and an Anteunaria–Cirsium type. The breadth in winter diet indicates that Blue Grouse may successfully occupy other habitats when typical winter habitat is scarce.