Hi all was out grouse hunting on fri afternoon on snow that fell early that morning. It was mid afternoon and a excellent area. Didn't cross but maybe 3 sets of tracks in the snow. Did have 3 flushes but 2 were birds that were already roosted in some pines. My question is will grouse typically not move around on "fresh" snow? These are the first 3 birds I've ever flushed just curious why they weren't more on the ground. The one that was on the ground didn't give a safe shot as I was over top my buddies head. Thanks for any input!
I went out yesterday and we crossed a lot of grouse tracks. The birds held really tight for the dog. Most were in groups, but We did have a few singles. I think it depends on the weather that day.My dad and i had 14 flushes and got 3 grouse.
IME generally no, not in the fresh stuff. Friday all bird were either in pines or underneath. Saturday morning after the 3-4" of powder settled to 1-2" of snow they weren't sinking into, they were down and moving. (Crops of birds from both days were nearly empty, they were down to feed.) The one place I don't bother with when there's that sort of snow amount is areas that contain dead ferns and shin-high sections of laurel. It seems to turn that amount of snow into 5-6" for the birds and is tough going.
This bird has his track shoes on:
Both days were tough conditions where I was, still moved about 20 birds, with three situations warranting a shot.
We had great hunting yesterday. The warm temp had the birds out and feeding. Decided to hunt my derby, he has 4 horseback placements this fall and handles grouse no problem. As you can tell by the picture most of the snow melted where I was hunting but we had a coating when we started the morning.
Thanks for the responses so far guys. Glad to see someone got on some. The area I was hunting looked about like gobblers pic. Also it wasn't very warm 28-30 the time we were there. No dog I left him at home bc my collar has been acting up. Reguardless just glad I got to see one!
We were out the day after Christmas at ricketts glen and we covered miles of clear cuts and swampy areas with a very good German shorthair. We only saw 1 grouse and 1 rabbit. Grouse numbers are way down in that area.