"In Montana Wilds, An Unlikely Alliance To Save The Sage Grouse"

"As its name implies, the sage grouse lives in sagebrush country, the rolling hills of knee-high scrub that's the common backdrop in movie Westerns. Pristine sagebrush is disappearing, however, and so are the birds. Biologists want to protect the sage grouse, but without starting a 21st century range war over it. So they've undertaken a grand experiment in the American West, to keep the grouse happy, as well as cattle ranchers and the energy industry."

"This won't be easy. It's a fussy kind of bird. Take, for example, the sage grouse lek.

A lek is a mating ritual. The males — chicken-size, brown and white with spiky tail feathers — have big air sacs on their chests. They look like they're wearing brassieres. They gather in groups and perform a song and dance to attract females."

Christopher Joyce reports for MPR's Morning Edition July 10, 2013.

Source: NPR, 07/10/2013