2014-15 Ruffed Grouse Thread

Discussion in 'Small Game Hunting' started by trust me, Nov 1, 2014.

  1. trust me

    trust me Troubled Loner

    17,305
    254
    Nov 27, 2004
    Jerkwater, KY
    I've been taking photos of those old chimneys along the way, hope to print them up in black and white and put a collection of them on the wall. I always have to poke around those house sites, probably find me at the bottom of a well someday.
     
  2. JonDunn

    JonDunn 10 pointer

    1,727
    185
    Dec 26, 2005
    Up the holler
    Good job there buddy! You done went and killed the last bird in the country.

    I've not been out like I should this year. One reason is I've only flew 2 birds, an one of them wasn't in his home last weekend when we checked on him. Gotta really love dogs to tantalize ones self to this degree. It's surely not fair to them though.
     
  3. hitch

    hitch 10 pointer

    1,065
    111
    Jan 16, 2008
    Back after them today, hunted a nice spot which I hunted earlier in the year and didn't move a bird, today found three hiding there. One I flushed, the other were pointed but didn't hold hardly enough to get even a chance at them.

    I guess I'm lucky my dog seems to love to go no matter what, if we find birds or not he hunts hard and doesn't want to quit. Maybe, he and I are too much alike that we just like to be out getting some much needed exercise and a bird contact is just extra.
     
  4. KY Grouse Hunter

    KY Grouse Hunter 6 pointer

    274
    16
    Nov 2, 2007
    Southeastern Kentucky
    Have hunted a total of 5 times this season. All spots that have held a bird or two in the past years. Thought I heard one fly out of a tree, and saw the butt of another also flying out of a tree. I have three exceptionally good dogs, one that is winning on the coverdog circuit and it is just not justifiable anymore to keep dogs in SE KY anymore. The birds are just gone. Maybe pockets here and there, but overall, the birds are just not here. No real hope of state-wide habitat improvement due to all being primarily privately owned, logging is minimal, woods are mostly mature growth forests now, and land development just keeps creeping in slowly. I have not carried a shotgun in two years, just a blank pistol in case we got some work in. This so far, has been the most disheartening year for me as a KY bird hunter in a long time.
     
  5. Gen.Stonewall

    Gen.Stonewall 6 pointer

    115
    0
    May 1, 2009
    Bell Co.

    Awesome looking place and good job!!
     
  6. Gen.Stonewall

    Gen.Stonewall 6 pointer

    115
    0
    May 1, 2009
    Bell Co.
    I agree 100% with your assessment. If I did get a shot I am not sure I would try to hit it.
     
  7. BirdBuster

    BirdBuster 6 pointer

    343
    13
    Apr 4, 2010
    Hunted for 1.5 hours this evening. Went to two points. On both, as soon as I came in sight of the dog she broke and worked scent but no bird. Ground was super crunchy. Think the birds lifted before we got to them.
     
  8. BirdBuster

    BirdBuster 6 pointer

    343
    13
    Apr 4, 2010
    I am whooped. Hunted for over 3 hours that was straight up and down. Had one wild flush. Went against my better judgment and hunted strip benches. Back to the hollows when the weather decides to be nice.
     
  9. hitch

    hitch 10 pointer

    1,065
    111
    Jan 16, 2008
    Got out this afternoon ahead of the polar vortex. Hit a place I hunted a few weeks ago, on that trip I didn't move a bird. This afternoon the beast pointed 7 birds, and I killed the first one. Decided to not kill any of the others, and leave them to hopefully produce a bunch more for next year. As usual, the birds start appearing in the places I hunt as winter progresses. Every trip now it seems we are finding more and more birds. Hopefully the trend continues.
     
  10. BirdBuster

    BirdBuster 6 pointer

    343
    13
    Apr 4, 2010
    Hitch,
    Glad you had a great hunt. What had the bird been eating that you killed?
     
  11. trust me

    trust me Troubled Loner

    17,305
    254
    Nov 27, 2004
    Jerkwater, KY
    I've killed one, and he'd been in the acorns.

    Crop content 1-3-15.jpg

    The 2004 Appalachian grouse study said acorns were the main item in a grouse's diet. At that time, I'd only cleaned one bird with acorns in it, and I disagreed with the study. Since then, I've not inspected a great deal of birds but I've only seen 3 or 4 more with acorns in them. Most of what I find are Christmas fern and various greens, dogwood in early season, and beech in the good years. This year beech is very spotty, trees in the creek seem to have a few nuts and trees up on the hill are bare.
     
  12. hitch

    hitch 10 pointer

    1,065
    111
    Jan 16, 2008
    Honeysuckle leaves assorted other greens, a couple of grapes and a few sumac.

    I've felt all season the insane acorn crop has probably relocated birds out of their normal locations.
     
  13. BirdBuster

    BirdBuster 6 pointer

    343
    13
    Apr 4, 2010
    trust me,
    I agree with you about the acorns. Up north I have killed several with acorns.

    Hitch,
    That was what the first grouse I killed had in it. The second grouse I killed had a few greens and a red berry that looked like dog wood. The were growing on a very small vine that was tangled with grape vines and green briars.
     
  14. grousec

    grousec 6 pointer

    471
    2
    Jan 15, 2009
    mt sterling ky
    I envy you with that great looking grouse wand. I have a Ithaca NID 20 ga but I sure love the 28 gauge sxs's. I bet that thing is light and lively.
     
  15. BirdBuster

    BirdBuster 6 pointer

    343
    13
    Apr 4, 2010
    grousec,
    The little gun is a joy to hunt with. It is just shy of 6 pounds. This is one of the later flues. They beefed the later ones up a little due to the ammunition change. Some guys with the Flues say theirs weigh just a dab over 5 pounds. With the gun having 26" barrels, I like a little extra weight. It helps taming down the front. This gun has factory chokes of cylinder and modified. Couldn't get any better.
     

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