First grouse hunt of the season. (pics)


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sbarkowski
September 27, 2009, 09:50 PM
My buddy and I finally got out to do some grouse hunting. Early season and thick forest made it challenging but we got 4 birds in 3 hours without the help of my German Pointer. Probablly could have bagged our limits if she could have come with us, lots of them out there.

From the forest to the table.. There's nothing like earning your dinner.


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MCgunner
September 27, 2009, 10:02 PM
My, I just ate BBQ, but it still looks delicious. :D

Only flushing game we have down here is quail. Grouse must be a lot of fun. I'm envious.

sbarkowski
September 27, 2009, 10:29 PM
Grouse are definately challenging thats why I enjoy hunting them. Plus there great seasoned battered and deep fried!

jim in Anchorage
September 27, 2009, 10:48 PM
Most grouse[most, not all] grouse in Alaska [spruce or ruffed] don't flush, just hop away and look at you. Guess they have never been shot at-I call em fool hens. Lots of fun with a .22 pistol.

countertop
September 28, 2009, 12:52 AM
Nice.

Where were you guys?? I'm heading up to Erie, PA first weekend of November for a grouse hunt. Cant wait for it!!

sbarkowski
September 28, 2009, 12:54 AM
Northern Ontario Canada in the small town of North Bay.

Mossberg535
September 28, 2009, 12:59 AM
I havent ever grouse hunted but Im going to try it out this year.
I ran across a lot of them squirrel hunting the past few years, probably should have been out there for grouse too.
definitely something Im going to hunt alone.

1KPerDay
September 28, 2009, 01:44 AM
Hope you don't mind the hijack but I thought I'd chime in; I got my first grouse of the year last saturday... humped about 8 miles through thick aspen brush. Saw one, got one. Beautiful day. I'd love to hunt back east or somewhere in those mythical places where they get 20 flushes a day, but out west you take what you can get. Still a blast. :)

http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a206/1KPerDay/Grouse%20Hunting%20Fall%20Leaves%202009/th_536a2a77.jpg (http://i12.photobucket.com/albums/a206/1KPerDay/Grouse%20Hunting%20Fall%20Leaves%202009/536a2a77.jpg)
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sbarkowski
September 28, 2009, 09:57 AM
Dont mind at all :-). Alot of people dont like it because of all the thick bush you have to make your way through to get them. Then when they flush theres so much cover and they can turn on a dime mid flight dodging behind trees, it takes work to bring them down. Luckly were blessed with a large number of them in the area that you dont have to walk to far to get on another one should one get away. And they do, alot. lol thats where a good dog helps alot. Great pics.

MCgunner
September 28, 2009, 10:49 AM
Sounds like they'd have a lot of cover to fall in. A dog would help in retrieving, too. That's all my lab does. He wouldn't know a grouse from a pheasant. LOL Ducks and doves are his forte.

sbarkowski
September 28, 2009, 03:45 PM
I have a 6 month old German Shorthaired Pointer, she just got fixed so I couldnt bring her out for this hunt. Right now she only points by sight or sound, hope there's nothing wrong with her sniffer. Maybe she's too young and all the smells are new and confusing? Im probablly expecting to much to soon also. I hid 4 wings around the back yard and she was able to find them all, but when it comes to finding live birds in unfamiliar territory she would just rather play than find me birds lol, but thats ok for now.

garza
September 28, 2009, 04:38 PM
Those are some tasty looking tenders :D

IllHunter
September 28, 2009, 04:45 PM
Wazzup with posting tasty treat pix and not spouting forth with recipes? Are you trying to just soil my keyboard?

bad_aim_billy
September 28, 2009, 05:34 PM
Grouse are extremely stupid, but also extremely unpredictable. Last week I was out and flushed one at about 5 yards. Then I noticed it's mate was still sitting on a log and had never moved. I guess communication between them isn't really a focus of their existence.

Tim the student
September 28, 2009, 05:47 PM
What did you bread them with? Looks great!

sbarkowski
September 28, 2009, 06:07 PM
Wazzup with posting tasty treat pix and not spouting forth with recipes? Are you trying to just soil my keyboard?
Not much of a recipe really, its pretty straight forward. In a large ziploc bag, mix flour with salt, pepper, spices of your liking, (I used whatever the wife would let me touch in the kitchen :P) If it looks like too much spices then its probablly just the right amount. You can also throw potato chip crumbs into the mix, whichever kind you like as long as there small crumbs, that adds a nice touch as well. Cut breasts into thick strips. Beat 2-3 eggs in a bowl (does 3-4 breats), throw the strips into the bowl and coat them well with egg. Then throw the strips into the bag of flour, spices and chip crumbs and shake until all the pieces are well coated with the mix. Throw the strips into a deep fryer pre heated to 350-400 degrees. (do not over fill, pieces should be allowed to move freely in the oil) Once the pieces start to float in the oil continue to cook for 1 more min. then remove and let cool. Serve with your favorite dipping sauce. I like plum sauce and ranch dip is great also.

I made myself hungry again.. time to get out and bag some more brids!

longdayjake
September 28, 2009, 11:17 PM
Forest grouse sure are stupid birds. I shot one on saturday with my .22 (the only birds in Idaho legal to hunt with a rifle). He saw me so he went behind a bush that was so thin it was almost transparent. So I watched him trot behind the bush for a while trying to get a good solid bead on his head. Eventually he had to see if I was still there so he trotted back into the open and looked at me right before I shot him through the neck.

I have also seen the exact same thing when one will take off from a log and the other will just sit there and stare at you. They are so dumb its funny.

sbarkowski
September 29, 2009, 09:23 AM
Yes, thats true. Their defense is to stand completely still and try to blend in. If you want a more sporting hunt make the bird flush. I wont shoot a bird on the ground because I'm not hunting to feed myself. I can afford to lose one once in a while and not go hungry. Once you find the bird they will usually flush to the nearest opening if pushed out. Knowing that, you can anticipate where the bird will flush and get set up before your partner or dog flushes the bird towards that opening. I've found that about 80% of the time when a bird is flushed and you miss you'll find it in a tree opposed to back on the ground.

redneckdan
September 29, 2009, 11:02 AM
My favorite way to hunt them is in November when the leaves are off. You'll find them in the morning up in the crown of the trees catching some sun to warm up. Still hunt and glass the trees, pop 'em with a .22

MCgunner
September 29, 2009, 11:30 AM
I have a 6 month old German Shorthaired Pointer, she just got fixed so I couldnt bring her out for this hunt. Right now she only points by sight or sound, hope there's nothing wrong with her sniffer. Maybe she's too young and all the smells are new and confusing? Im probablly expecting to much to soon also. I hid 4 wings around the back yard and she was able to find them all, but when it comes to finding live birds in unfamiliar territory she would just rather play than find me birds lol, but thats ok for now.

We're having that problem with our lab. Took him dove hunting this season. He was really a little young last season to start hunting until toward the end of the duck season. I took him a few times and he'd hunt by sight, hasn't learned to follow the gun, either. But, he's young.

On our dove hunt, we shot a lot of birds. He was hunting by sight. On a couple of occasions, though, he obviously used his nose, so I know he has a nose, LOL. Some dogs seem to be a little quicker than others on pickin' it up. I'm hoping he gets a little more into using his nose. We saved a bunch of feathers from a couple of early season teal hunts for training, gonna stuff an old sock with 'em and hide it from him, get him to sniff it out, hopefully. We didn't take him on the teal hunts because of the gators this time of year. Don't want him getting ate.

jim in Anchorage
September 30, 2009, 05:03 AM
Grouse are extremely stupid, but also extremely unpredictable. Last week I was out and flushed one at about 5 yards. Then I noticed it's mate was still sitting on a log and had never moved. I guess communication between them isn't really a focus of their existence.
Not scientific, but I think females tend to count on their camouflage more [nest sitting] and males flush.

ASCTLC
October 1, 2009, 03:23 PM
What is that cleaning method? Looks like some kind of "step on xxx and pull" or am I just interpretting something that's not there?

Thanks,
Andy

1KPerDay
October 1, 2009, 04:34 PM
Yes, you step on the wings and pull up on the legs. the breast (usually) pretty much jumps right out toward you and you can snip it off at the wing joints and you're done. Helps when cleaning a lot of pheasants at once.

ASCTLC
October 1, 2009, 04:57 PM
Thanks. Never knew it'd be that easy.

Tim the student
October 1, 2009, 05:53 PM
That method works great on pheasant too.

1KPerDay
October 1, 2009, 06:13 PM
Thanks. Never knew it'd be that easy. The sound's a bit freaky the first couple times you hear it. :) Make sure you're stepping on the wings right close to the body.

ASCTLC
October 1, 2009, 06:21 PM
Thanks for the tip. Going to take my .22 to elk camp this year. If I fill the elk tag, I'll keep hunting by focussing on grouse.

Last time one of the guys got one, I skinned it with a knife not realizing such a simple task it could have been.

Arkel23
October 1, 2009, 09:15 PM
Looks great!

huntsman
October 2, 2009, 12:05 AM
Northern Ontario Canada in the small town of North Bay.
Near Sudbury? Great Pics of gray phase birds.

paintballdude902
October 2, 2009, 12:17 AM
nice!! im gonna try my hand at grouse this year since i just moved up to the mountains

stonecoldy
October 2, 2009, 12:53 AM
I hunt ruffed grouse a couple weekends a year, one of the most challenging birds to hunt with a shotgun IF you don't ground swat or tree swat them.
The population in Ohio has declined dramatically over the past 30 years that I have chased them. I usually take trips to the northern states.
Our Wisconsin trip last weekend, I think we ran across 12 birds per day at most, plus several woodcock. Leaves were still thick on the trees, so shots were tough on flushes.
Fortunately we had an older Lab with us, the birds sat tight and with the closer ranging and slower pacing dog, had better shot opportunities. We mostly see gray phase birds. Southern Ohio birds seem to be the rufous phase mostly, which I think is a prettier bird. They both taste mighty good breasted out and pan fried in butter, salt and tarragon!
I usually use my Beretta 390 20 gauge semi-auto with warm 7/8 oz. loads of 6 shot, I/C choke. Seems to be a pretty good combo.

sbarkowski
October 2, 2009, 11:32 AM
Yes, 2 hours east of Sudbury. North shore of Lake Nippissing.

huntsman
October 2, 2009, 02:43 PM
Yes, 2 hours east of Sudbury. North shore of Lake Nippissing.
I had the pleasure to fish Lake Onaping years ago, beautiful country up there.

sbarkowski
October 2, 2009, 03:45 PM
I had the pleasure to fish Lake Onaping years ago, beautiful country up there.
For sure, an outdoorsman's paradise. But honestly alot of ppl take it for granted around here. I grew up in the country and moved to the big city for 6 years and now I'm back. Dont think I'll be leaving anytime soon :D

Grizfire
October 4, 2009, 03:29 PM
I love using that technique you demonstrated...step on the wings, grab the feet and pull. Easiest thing to clean on the planet.

sbarkowski
October 4, 2009, 03:42 PM
I love using that technique you demonstrated...step on the wings, grab the feet and pull. Easiest thing to clean on the planet.
Yes, this bird was definately created to be hunted and eaten. I dont think it gets any simpler than that. This was my buddy's first grouse hunt with me and he's the one doing the cleaning. He was suprised as to how simple it was also.

StuntHeavy
October 5, 2009, 03:13 PM
My first ruffed grouse/partridge hunt was just this past Saturday as well. Got beginners luck and took 3 partridge down with one shot!

I also made nuggets/tenders out of them. Just about like chicken as far as I could tell.

sbarkowski
October 5, 2009, 03:28 PM
3 with one shot? now thats one way of conserving ammo. congrats!

StuntHeavy
October 5, 2009, 03:40 PM
3 with one shot? now thats one way of conserving ammo. congrats!

Yeah, it was some sort of lucky shot thats for sure! Ironically, it was my first time hunting (anything for that matter), and first time using that particular shotgun. I had touched off 2 shots earlier in the day, that were clean misses, and this 3rd shot was my final of the day. So at least, all in all my record averaged 1 for 1. :D

I might have to try that potato chip idea. Sounds great!

JeffDilla
October 15, 2009, 08:14 PM
Nice work! I went on my first grouse hunt of the season Monday and Tuesday, there are an unusual amount of birds around this year up my way. I only shot one on Monday (got a late start to the day) but got my limit (4) on Tuesday. We saw 19 birds on Tuesday alone, but they seem more easily spooked this year, I was only able to shoot one on the fly. It's a great season for them. I cooked some up tonight, they were great.

sbarkowski
October 16, 2009, 03:33 PM
Thanks, I'm jelous of the amount of birds in your area. Most I've ever seen in a day is 13 and thats only happend once in 4 years. Hopefully once my hunting partner gets her act together (6 month old GSP) she'll be able to get me on a few more birds ;-)

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