STATUS. Small species (II category)
Habitat: A rare, insufficiently studied species, the number of which is rapidly declining, endemic to Rossimi. Wing length 175 - 200 mm. Forest zone of the Far East.
Spread. The grouse range border runs from Okhotsk to the south-west along the river. May to the village of Nelkan and further west to the valley of the river. Apdan. Here, the grouse range covers the Aldano-Uchursky ridge (possibly the upper reaches of the Olekma River), then its border goes along the southern slopes of the Stanovoy, Yanalsky, Tukuringra-Dzhagdy ranges, and then along the upper reaches of the Oldoi and Urkana rivers at the junction of the Stanovoy and Dzhugdzhur ranges. R. Zeya. In the south, the area covers the basin of the river. Selemdzhi, the upper parts of the basins of the Bureya and Kura rivers and goes to the Amur. From the right bank of the Amur, the area of distribution of the species along the xp axis. Sikhote-Alin forms a deep wedge up to the headwaters of the river. Bol. Ussurka and a little further south. On the eastern slopes of the Sikhote-Alin, the border goes to the lake. Bol. Kizi and to the shores of the Tatar Strait (1 - 5). Outside our country, Siberian grouse can be found only in Northern China (1 - 3).
A decrease in the area of habitats of the species is observed everywhere. In the 50s. on Sakhalin, Siberian grouse was found north of the Dolinsk - Kholmsk line up to the Schmidt Peninsula, inhabiting spruce-fir forests on the East Sakhalin, Kamyshev, Nabil and other ridges, where it has probably disappeared now (1, 6 - 8 ). There was no grouse in the vicinity of the lake. Evoron and near the city of Okhotsk. In many areas of the BAM zone, this bird has become a rarity or has completely disappeared (9).
Typical habitats are heavily littered, dark coniferous taiga of Ayan spruce and fir on the slopes of hills and mountains with small clear glades and a cover of wild rosemary and moss. In summer, Siberian grouse can live in various types of coniferous forests and on berry fields, but in winter it needs spruce and fir, which provide the main (if not the only) food - needles (1, 4, 7).
Grouse are characterized by insignificant seasonal vertical movements: in summer, the birds climb the mountains to the belt of cedar elfin trees, and in winter they gather along creeks overgrown with dark coniferous taiga (1 - 3.10).
The number. The total number is unknown. In most of the range, the species is rare and occurs sporadically. In the early 70s. in the upper reaches of the river. Suluk, during the nesting period on a plot of 18 sq. Km, 8 pairs of Siberian grouses were counted. In the area of Lake Evoron, not a single bird was found in the same area, although previously the Siberian Grouse was common here (9). In the early 70s. in the upper reaches of the river. Bikin, the population density of Siberian grouse in the summer season reached 6 individuals per km, and in the upper reaches of the river. Tyrma - 8 - 12 individuals per 1 sq. Km. During the nesting period, up to 5 - 7 males were recorded simultaneously in the same area on the currents (1, 4, 10 - 12). In the same years, in the upper reaches of the river. Selemdzhi, the population density of Siberian grouse did not exceed 2.5 individuals per 10 sq. Km (9). In the upper reaches of the river. Bikin, during the brood period of 1979, on some springs, the density of Siberian grouse reached 6 individuals per 10 ha in the presence of plots that were not inhabited at all (13). As man assimilates the habitats of the Siberian grouse, its number decreases, and then the species disappears completely. The number within individual foci is subject to significant fluctuations (2, 3, 5, 9, 11, 13).
Limiting factors. The attachment of the Siberian grouse to local areas of the dark coniferous taiga makes it rigidly dependent on their condition. The impossibility of existence outside the spruce and fir plantations in the event of their cutting down or burning out leads to the complete disappearance of the bird. Various factors influence the success and reproduction of a species, especially cold rainy days during the period of incubation and hatching of chicks.
Among the limiting factors is the well-known "gullibility" of the Siberian grouse - the ability to hide very tightly on open branches. This feature of behavior, which allows you to get close to the bird, in modern conditions leads to its complete destruction in the developed territories (1 - 3, 10, 11, 13),
Security measures. There are eight nature reserves within the grouse range. Shooting it is prohibited everywhere. However, it should be noted that the measures taken do not allow stabilizing the abundance of the species (11). To maintain the population of Siberian grouse at an optimal level, it is necessary to preserve its habitats. Areas where this bird still remains in noticeable numbers should be taken under strict protection. Already now it is necessary to start work on its artificial breeding.
Sources of information: 1. Gladkov, 1952, 2. Vorobiev, 1954, 3. Vorobiev, 1963, 4. Potapov, 1970, 5. Panov, 1973, 6. Gizenko, 1955, 7. Mishin, 1959, 8. Benkovsky, 1974 , 9. Abramov, 1962, 10. Korenberg, Brunov, 1977, 11. Nikanorov, 1977, 12. Pukinsky, Nikanorov, 1974, 13. Valkovich (pers. Comm.). Compiled by E. S. Gusakov.
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