Virginia Grouse and Woodcock?

DLJ6

Member
Joined
Apr 23, 2015
Messages
24
Ive been traipsing about in the GWNF here in Virginia in hopes of putting my young ESS on a grouse. They sure seem sparsely populated these days. The last time I hunted them in the same areas was in the late 90s behind an old yellow lab. Back then we averaged about 2 flushes/hr.
I may switch areas and focus on some wetter ground this weekend as I suspect the woodcock may be migrating through with freezing temps up north.
Anyone here have any advice to share?
 

just_jon

Well-Known Member
LRH Team Member
Joined
Dec 1, 2019
Messages
94
Location
Newville, PA
Population is way down in the parts of southern and central PA that I hunt. State says avian influenza. Suspect the same is occurring in VA.

I have 2 ESS and still get out with them although I have no idea why. They get some exercise and I get some bear/deer scouting in. We flushed 2 birds in 3 outings. Unfortunately, I did not get to see them.
 

JTComfort

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 19, 2017
Messages
65
Location
Arlington, VA
The birds are where you find them in VA. Grouse down south in the Jefferson NF and highlands West of 81. Also Northwest on the WV border in GWNF (last year saw a few when hiking). Have seen some woodcock in Central VA SW of Richmond bordering farmland along the James. You are right, they should start moving with the cold snap at last. The doggone split season generally excludes the peak of the migration. The best resource I've found is DGIF agents in their localities - just ask, they know where the birds are. Been know to stop their trucks for a quick chat - they're really the good guys. Good luck.
 

DLJ6

Member
Joined
Apr 23, 2015
Messages
24
Thanks all for the replies. We got out 6 times SW of Front Royal and flushed one grouse that we saw. There is a preserve north of us in WVa. that I am considering taking the pup to. Also considering a trip next fall, either plains for pheasant of Maine for grouse.
Dave
 

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