Michigan -(Ammoland.com)- The 2015 Michigan Ruffed Grouse and American Woodcock Status Report now is available. Since the 1950s, these surveys and reports have provided the Department of Natural Resources with the preseason population status of ruffed grouse and woodcock.
“This is going to be another outstanding season for grouse and woodcock hunting in Michigan,” said Al Stewart, DNR upland game bird specialist. “With grouse season just opened Sept. 15 and woodcock coming up on the 19th, hunters have some great opportunities in front of them.”
Data collected from hunter cooperator surveys during 2014, mail harvest surveys from the 2014 hunting season and 2015 spring breeding surveys contributed valuable information about grouse and woodcock populations. The hunter cooperator survey is made possible through data collected by volunteer hunters and shared with the DNR. Those interested in helping the DNR monitor grouse and woodcock populations can volunteer to complete a hunter cooperator survey. It’s as simple as downloading the cooperator form and providing details regarding their hunt.
When hunting grouse and woodcock, location is the key. Hunters in Michigan are encouraged to use the DNR’s online mapping location, Mi-HUNT, to search for specific habitat types on public hunting lands. There are multiple layers of information that can be turned on or off, depending on the hunter’s needs. For example, users can view the different forest types, topography, satellite imagery and road layers to help plan their trip. See www.michigan.gov/mihunt for more details about this interactive mapping application.
The DNR also reminds hunters to check out the 14 GEMS (Grouse Enhanced Management Sites) available this year to target their grouse and woodcock hunting efforts, explore new locations and even get great discounts from local businesses. The vegetation in these areas is managed specifically to provide very good habitat for ruffed grouse and American woodcock.