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  #21  
Old 11-10-2010, 09:13 AM
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Bran Bran is online now
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Boy that sounds good. I need to come West and hook up with you guys after Christmas!!
You're right on the money about the Game Commisions not getting anything out of small game as oppsed to the deer, turkey etc. Same way here in VA, they couldn't care less and it took 25 years of decline to appoint one or two people in Richmond to look into habitat management for Quail. Anyhow, off the soap box. I always like to think about how Pat McManus would say that they're a bunch of maniacs that are howling with laughter about how they're setting seasons and bag limits up, sitting back smoking cigars, drinking bourbon and thinking about how much torture they can out the hunters through!
A 3 Grouse limit just makes you feel a little smaller at the end of the day!
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  #22  
Old 11-11-2010, 05:27 PM
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Default Please take a look

Bran - that dog looks way too good to be just a fishing dog. If you ever take a notion to come over to the ruffed grouse mecca that is E. TN shoot me an email.

Everyone who grouse hunts - I would like to ask everyone that hunts grouse and woodcock in TN to do something. I have been participating in a survey conducted by TWRA for the past few years. I don't know if this will help anything or if they pay any attention to it. The survey is pretty basic: date of hunt, county, # flushed and bagged, hours hunted and # of dogs.

If your interested in this you can contact Roger Applegate - TWRA Small Game Program Coordinator. His number is 615-781-6610 and his email is Roger.Applegate@state.tn.us.

I use the form to help me keep up with my hunts through the year.

Thanks.
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  #23  
Old 11-13-2010, 11:26 PM
FishNHunt FishNHunt is offline
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Grouse for the most part have a 7 year cycle. I'm not up to date on the current trend as to if it's up or down. My uncle and I used to grouse hunt religously when I was younger. Once my dog died I lost all interest in it. Later in life I had a favorite place that I would kill a few grouse with my 22 while riding my 4 wheeler. But, like everything else all good things must come to an end and that land was bought up and sold off. A few places that we always found birds were in the Big South Fork where, I saw my largest "covey" of grouse. If I remember correctly there were over a dozen grouse came out from that one point. We also hunted North Cherokee WMA in Newport. We hunted private lands in Hawkins county which after deer gun season where rather easy to obtain by simply asking the land owners. I hunt along Chilhowee lake and in South Cherokee WMA alot and have at times saw several birds in a day and on one nice sunny day I sat on a stump and counted 5 different birds drumming all around me. Of course I wasn't hunting them that day. I have saw many grouse while traveling the Foothills Parkway but, you can't hunt from there so you will be doing alot of walking to get to them. You might try Foothills WMA from the Happy Valley side. There is a pull off at the "water spicket". It is only a small sliver of ground at the road but, opens up wider once you travel up alittle. Foothills WMA also goes along the right side of 129 threw "The dragon". It's steep in places but, that the state line there is a nice pull off and a good days hunt can be made out of it. I have also saw a grouse both times that I have gone to Farrs Gap. Just go up Citico road to "Double camp" and turn left. It makes a long loop and puts you back out on Citico Rd. I found a grouse nesting in our woods at home this spring. I don't know if she made it but, I hope so. The woods are surrounded by cow pasture and her being in there was a surprise. Sorry but, you can't hunt her. Maybe that will give you some general directions to look.
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  #24  
Old 11-14-2010, 12:38 AM
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Any Grouse in Middle Tennessee, maybe up around Cookville or somewhere on the plateau? Thanks in advance.
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  #25  
Old 12-14-2010, 04:52 PM
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Default Going grouse hunting

This Saturday if anyone is interested in joining me. I don't know where I'm going yet but wherever it is we probably wont see any grouse but I've got to get the dog out! Anyone that wants to meet up with me let me know. russells@mbiarch.com
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  #26  
Old 12-14-2010, 07:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by russ View Post
This Saturday if anyone is interested in joining me. I don't know where I'm going yet but wherever it is we probably wont see any grouse but I've got to get the dog out! Anyone that wants to meet up with me let me know. russells@mbiarch.com
Russ, would still like to meet up with you sometime but can not commit this weekend. Good luck.
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  #27  
Old 12-14-2010, 09:17 PM
billyspey billyspey is offline
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have you considered hunting coal country , north side of hills are more productive and old overgrown farm land that have been reclaimed by mother nature, moist valleys, pine thickets ,clear cuts that are growing back. strip pits spore piles hold birds. spent many years searching for places and hunting grouse. got to do lot of home work and driving and asking premission if you want to be a sucessful grouse hunter .not easy work, early season birds will be higher on the mtn. in grape vines . later moving down to overgrown moist valley,s . find food find birds. hope this helps.
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  #28  
Old 12-15-2010, 08:28 PM
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BlueRaiderFan BlueRaiderFan is offline
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Thanks Bill. I appreciate the advice.
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  #29  
Old 12-15-2010, 09:32 PM
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Love seeing pictures of all the bird dogs as well as the mention of grouse hunting. In fact spent the morning trudging through thick steep woods myself. And much like all of the recent reports came home empty handed. Although we did move 1 bird. Great morning out, and my German Shorthair did her job, but i did not trust her beeper collar and stood on the down hill side of the thicket thinking she was relieving herself. After a short few minutes the bird blew and flew along the contour, and after what I felt was a thorough search, was never found.

We used to hunt only quail and have seen the local wild quail opportunity go almost extinct. So in our boredom we have moved to grouse. I have found it to be much more exercise and at times frustrating but as mentioned previously extremely rewarding.

I find it a hard sport to learn. With as many blanks as one draws, it is hard to put together what you did right or wrong. The biggest lesson I have learned is persistence pays off. Last year was my first year and had one day where I did kill my limit. After that day I shot AT one more bird and that was it.

I read a mention of the younger folks not enjoying or pursuing upland birds. There is much more "instant" gratification in deer hunting as well as glamour put out there on TV. Bird hunting in East Tennessee has to be about something else. The love of the out doors, or "the chase", or what ever. For me it is the dog. I took a guy with me earlier this year for both quail and grouse. At the end of the day he was overwhelmed at the dedication and drive a bird dog has. We moved one grouse and shot several released quail, and at the end of the day my dog Belle was a beat up mess. Briars had cut everything from her chest to her tongue. She received many verbal praises and a few short pats on the head or ribs, but still hunted hard all day for nothing but the pleasure it brought to us. I love a bird dog.

Funny the similarities between modern day bird hunting and fly fishing. Fishing the park is my favorite fly fishing forum. Mostly for the EXPERIENCE. I can throw the drifter in the water most days and catch plenty of fish. But the park provides something more to my soul. Then there are those big browns. You know there many times and come home with nothing but tales of the one you saw but couldn’t get to eat.

I would love the opportunity to get together an run the dogs and learn from anyone who is willing to share a little bit of knowledge.

Sorry I got a little excited and wordy.

Alex
foresterq@hotmail.com
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  #30  
Old 12-16-2010, 01:08 PM
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Ms. Annie and I hunted the Sundquist unit of the North Cumberland WMA last Friday. We began around noon and hunted until almost dark. Beautiful day to be out, temperature a little cool and lots of snow still around up there. After the pup got her fill of playing in the snow we got down to business and hunted hard. Good looking places on the old strip mining property but no grouse. Finally, just before we quit she put up a woodcock out of a pine thicket beside a pond, a going away right-to-left wingshot, really easy so of course I missed it. We followed it and got another rise but the cover was far too close and it disappeared quickly over a rise. Well this jacked Ms. Annie up another notch but to no avail as darkness was soon to set in and the roads up there are easier to drive in daylight.

As many have commented on, success is not necessarily measured in how heavy the game bag is. We had fun that day and look forward to our next trip. I have reconciled myself to the fact that like fly fishing, one must pay his/her dues and learn bird hunting through experience. Luckily, the experience is fun too!
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