Hunters have average year at national grouse hunt

Hunters at the National Grouse and Woodcock Hunt, held Oct. 14-15 in the Grand Rapids area, harvested 278 grouse. That’s about average for the event, which typically draws about 96 hunters.

This year, hunters harvested 1.5 birds per hunter-day. The long-term average for the 29 years of the hunt is 1.4 grouse per hunter-day.

This year’s grouse harvest at the event was up 36 percent from last year. The woodcock harvest of 277 birds was up 34 percent from last year.

The ratio of immature grouse to adult females was 4.4.

“This suggests relatively poor reproductive success for grouse this year, as the long-term average is 6.6,” said Dan Dessecker, biologist for the Ruffed Grouse Society.

The event is a fund-raiser for the Ruffed Grouse Society. Participants compete only for recognition, not for cash or prizes.

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