I had never heard of a ptarmigan before this summer. One of the sporting clay stations in Moonlight is named "Ptarmigan Point." The P is silent.
Ptarmigan are grouse. It was explained to me that they aren't stupid like people think. They are just good at not being seen so they like to stand still.
The Lagopus grouse apparently found it easier to escape predators by not being seen than by flying away.[
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