The sharp-tailed grouse is a lekking bird species. These birds display in open areas known as leks with other males, anywhere from a single male to upwards of 20 will occupy one lek (averaging 8-12). A lek is defined as an assembly area where animals carry on display and courtship behavior. During the spring, male sharp-tailed grouse attend these leks from March through July with peak attendance in late April, early May. These dates do fluctuate from year to year based on the weather. The males display on the lek by stamping their feet rapidly, about 20 times per second, and rattle their tail feathers while turning in circles or dancing forward. Purple neck sacs are inflated and deflated during display. The males use "cooing" calls also to attract and compete for females. The females select the most dominant one or two males in the center of the lek, copulate, and then leave to nest and raise the young in solitary from the male.
SharpTailed Grouse LEKDSC5701