Hidden discoveries: Extinct animals & creole-pidgin ethnozoology (Part 3)
Shifting to quite common species, we learn on page 221 of the mid-1850s railroad survey about the Franklin’s grouse…
…a.k.a. the Tyee (‘chief’) grouse (the latter is a local English name I hadn’t known of):
“This bird, by the Indians, has the jargon name, ‘Tyee Kulla Kulla‘ or the ‘chief bird,’ or perhaps more correctly the gentleman bird.”
That is, a bird that’s able to dress like someone who’s well-to-do.
Unlike the two previous “new” zoological-name entries in this series (‘moose’ and ‘grizzly bear’), this táyí kə́ləkələ is not claimed to be a locally extinct species (at the time it was documented).
But it is a new phrase to us in Chinuk Wawa studies. Add it to your dictionaries, which I’ll wager don’t yet have a word for ‘grouse’.
Stay tuned for even more!