Lesser Prairie-Chicken

About the Lesser Prairie-Chicken

The Lesser Prairie-Chicken is a large species of grouse. It is closely related to, and slightly smaller than, the Greater Prairie-Chicken.

Lesser Prairie-Chickens are known for their mating rituals, which includes an elaborate dance performed by male birds in communal areas called leks. The birds puff out their cheek sacs and raise the long feathers on the sides of the face.

Lesser Prairie-Chickens are found in grassland habitat in parts of Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, and Colorado. Loss of undisturbed prairie habitat has been detrimental to this species.

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Details & Statistics

Added to Birdorable
Hatched on 30 January 2015
Scientific Name
Tympanuchus pallidicinctus
  • Galliformes
  • Phasianidae
  • Tympanuchus
  • T. pallidicinctus
Birdorable Family
Conservation Status
Vulnerable (as of 5 April 2020)
  • Least Concern (LC)
  • Near Threatened (NT)
  • Vulnerable (VU)
  • Endangered (EN)
  • Critically Endangered (CR)
  • Extinct in the Wild (EW)
  • Extinct (EX)
Source: IUCN Red List
Units: Imperial / Metric
15 to 16.1 inches
22.2 to 28.7 ounces



From IUCN Red List:
The Lesser Prairie-Chicken is listed as Vulnerable on the IUCN Red List and was last assessed in 2012 by BirdLife International. This species qualifies as Vulnerable owing to a long-term and rapid population decline. Although most populations appear to have stabilized or increased since 1995, populations in north-east Texas and parts of Oklahoma have declined precipitously since 2005, and in south-east New Mexico since 2001. As the effects of drought and the increasing demand for both fossil fuel and renewable energy development (including wind and biofuels) continue to place remaining habitats at risk, the species is precautionarily retained as Vulnerable until positive trends have been sustained.

International Names

Chinese (汉语) 小草原松鸡
Czech (Cesky) tetřívek enší
Danish (Dansk) Lille Præriehøne
Dutch (Nederlands) Klein Prairiehoen
Finnish (Suomi) pikkupreeriakana
French (Français) Tétras pâle
German (Deutsch) Kleines Präriehuhn
Italian (Italiano) Tetraone minore delle praterie
Japanese (日本語) ソウゲンライチョウ [sougenraichou]
Norwegian (Norsk) Småpræriejerpe
Polish (Polski) preriokur maly
Portuguese (Português) Galo-das-pradarias-pequeno
Russian (русский язык) Малый луговой тетерев
Spanish (Español) Gallo de las Praderas Chico
Swedish (Svenska) Mindre präriehöna
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