It is a ruffed grouse, Bonasa umbellus, but up in the neck of the woods where we now live the old timers refer to them as partridge. So is it ruffed grouse or partridge? It depends on who you are talking to.
A couple of years ago I called up a friend who was laid up during bird season. I asked him if he wanted a ruffed grouse. He said, “A what?” I said ruffed grouse, and he said again, “A what?” I thought there must be a lousy phone connection. I said, “I just shot a ruffed grouse and I’ll bring it over for you. It’s cleaned and everything.” Again he said, “A what?” Then I remembered this gentleman always referred to Bonasa umbellus as partridge.
It seems everyone under fifty years old calls them ruffed grouse or just grouse, but everyone over eighty calls them partridge. It’s that age group in the middle that makes for confusion.
Up here, if you are going bird hunting, bird means ruffed grouse. If you want to hunt woodcock or ducks or pheasants you had better be specific.
|Maggie says there's a ruffed grouse there.|