Last weekend was my second visit to the Highland Plains Lesser Prairie Chicken Festival in Milnesand, New Mexico. Milnesand is a little crossroad just a few miles from the state line with Texas, but it is a community big on spirit. The Festival is a joint event of the local community, The Nature Conservancy, the Grasslands Charitable Foundation, and the NM Dept. of Game and Fish. Over a three day period, participants are able to view the lesser prairie chickens on their leks (a phenomenal event of nature), and take in about a dozen other offerings including bird tours, field trips on playa lakes, local archeology, etc, etc. Plus they feed you great food all weekend. I highly recommend the experience for any lover of nature, bird watcher, or nature photographer. You can see more images and hear the birds in action on my blog..

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Comment by Stephanie on April 27, 2009 at 4:56pm
I've always wondered what the Lesser Prairie Chicken looked like. I also wonder if they don't like being considered "lesser" to that OTHER prairie chicken.
Comment by Ben Moffett on April 27, 2009 at 7:07pm
Nice shots. Great bird. But now I'm wondering. I can pronounce Pojoaque, Thoreau, and Ocate. But I can't manage Milnesand. The Book says it was once called Mill-in-the-Sand. So how has it been corrupted, if at all? Obviously, I've never been there, but I hope to make the chicken festival soon.
Comment by David Cramer on April 28, 2009 at 4:21am
Stephanie - The photo is of a male performing on the lek. They are only a little smaller than the "greater" chicken.

Ben - Not sure where the name comes from, but it is pronounced as "Mill neh sand."

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