A Museum Quality Print of the Canadian or Spotted Grouse by John James Audubon. Mr. Audubon went to great lengths to procure these birds for his drawings, walking through dense woods and swamps, sometimes sinking to his waste in the bogs and swamps, but keeping his gun dry at all times. He shows a couple pairs of males and females of these northern gamebirds. This grouse was plate or picture number 176 in the first Havell edition of the great ornithology book, The Birds of America, which was published by Audubon in the first third of the 19th century.
Tetrao Canadensis - Mr Audubon describes these birds thus "The Spruce Partridge or Canada Grouse breeds in the States of Maine and Massachusetts about the middle of May, nearly a month earlier than at Labrador. The males pay their addresses to the females by strutting before them on the ground or moss, in the manner of the Turkey Cock, frequently rising several yards in the air in a spiral manner, when they beat their wings violently against their body, thereby producing a drumming noise, clearer than that of the Rutted Grouse, and which can be heard at a considerable distance. The female places her nest beneath the low horizontal branches of fir trees, taking care to conceal it well. It consists of a bed of twigs, dry leaves and mosses, on which she deposits from eight to fourteen eggs, of a deep fawn colour, irregularly splashed with different tints of brown. They raise only one brood in the season, and the young follow the mother as soon as hatched. Along the shores of the Bay of Fundy, the Spruce Partridge is much more abundant than the Rutted Grouse, which indeed gradually becomes scarcer the farther north we proceed, and is unknown in Labrador, where it is replaced by the Willow Ptarmigan, and two other species.
The females of the Canada Grouse differ materially in their colouring in different latitudes. In Maine, for instance, they are more richly coloured than in Labrador, where I observed that all the individuals procured by me were of a much greyer hue than those shot near Dennisville. The like difference is perhaps still more remarkable in the Rutted Grouse, which are so very grey and uniformly coloured in the Northern and Eastern States, as to induce almost every person to consider them as of a species distinct from those found in Kentucky, or any of the southern mountainous districts of the Union. I have in my possession skins of both species procured a thousand miles apart, that present these remarkable differences in the general hue of their plumage. All the species of this genus indicate the approach of rainy weather or a snow storm, with far more precision than the best barometer; for on the afternoon previous to such weather, they all resort to their roosting places earlier by several hours than they do during a continuation of fine weather. I have seen groups of Grouse flying up to their roosts at mid-day, or as soon as the weather felt heavy, and have observed that it generally rained in the course of that afternoon. When, on the contrary, the same flock would remain busily engaged in search of food until sunset, I found the night and the following morning fresh and clear.....".
Mr Audubon also shows two different kinds of flora along with the Spotted Grous, they are described as follows, Trillium Pictum - This plant, as well as the other species represented, grows abundantly in Maine, in all such secluded places as are frequented by the Spotted Grouse, which eagerly devours its berries. It has ovate acuminate leaves, of a light green colour, thin and undulated; an erect peduncle; white flowers, veined with purple at the bottom, and having the petals lanceolate, recurved, nearly twice the length of the calyx. The berries are ovate and of a scarlet colour. Streptopus Distortus - About two feet high, with alternate, amplexicaul, ovate, acute, ribbed, light green leaves; greenish-yellow flowers, on pedicels which are distorted in the middle; and oval scarlet berries. About two feet high, with alternate, amplexicaul, ovate, acute, ribbed, light green leaves; greenish-yellow flowers, on pedicels which are distorted in the middle; and oval scarlet berries.
At Fine Art Prints of Distinction we painstakingly repair the original files of these old paintings and print them using premium quality inks and paper. The end result is a beautiful, archival reproduction print that will last in your home for generations and at a low cost so anyone can now have great artworks hanging in their home or business. Brandywine General Store is proud to offer for sale a Premium Fine Art Print made from the Ornithology painting entitled the Canadian or Spotted Grouse by John James Audubon.
Inventory #176 - Fine Art Prints of the Audubon Birds