2018–Greater Prairie Chicken

I’m heading back to Nebraska in a week or so to photograph Greater Prairie Chickens and Sharp-tailed Grouse again.  The mating rituals these two species go through are fascinating to watch.  For a couple of hours each morning for just a few short weeks in spring the male Greater Prairie Chickens arrive early at the lek and inflate their orange air sacks creating a thundering sound.  Then, they stomp their feet, flick their bright comb-like eyebrow feathers, and raise their pineal feathers like horns as they try to intimidate other males and attract females.  Here is a photograph of a make Greater Prairie Chicken announcing his presence.