Minnesota Ruffed Grouse Numbers Rising


Photo courtesy Minnesota DNR http://www.dnr.state.mn.us/hunting/grouse/
Photo courtesy Minnesota DNR http://www.dnr.state.mn.us/hunting/grouse/

According to the Minnestoa DNR, spring drumming by Minnesota’s ruffed grouse has increased 44% over last year.


“Higher drumming counts are good news,” said Dennis Simon, DNR wildlife section chief. “Minnesota offers some of the best ruffed grouse hunting in the nation and we want to maintain and enhance those opportunities.”

Drumming counts  (the number of male grouse heard drumming along specific routes in state forests) are used to determine the size of the ruffed grouse population, which rises and falls according to a 10-year cycle. The state’s population has been steadily increasing since 2005. This year’s increase was highest in the northeastern portion of the survey, where an average of 2.4 drum were recorded at each site, compared to a statewide average of 2.0 and last year’s average of 1.4.

Minnesota is one of the top grouse producers in the nation. According to a DNR press releae, “On average, 115,000 hunters harvest 545,000 ruffed grouse in Minnesota each year, also making it the state’s most popular game bird.”

Read the full press release HERE.

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