I don’t remember the first bird I shot. But I do remember when I knew I was a bird hunter. As a burr-headed boy of about 12, I was walking with Uncle Jim along a field edge in Alabama hunting rabbits behind a couple of beagles. The sudden eruption of a covey of quail not only startled my nerves, but drew something up from deep within that said, “This is who you are.” I have now been a bird hunter for 50 years.[Read more…] about WHY WE HUNT, Member Don Mallicoat
I grouse hunt because it’s in my DNA. Surprisingly, it doesn’t have to be passed down through genetics. Take a stroll through the grouse woods and you might find it quickly imprinted in yours.
The story of grouse hunting for me starts somewhere in the Deep South . . . in a part of Georgia, oddly enough, where there are no grouse. I’m still a third generation bird hunter – Every winter from December to the middle of January, we hunt the bird every grouse hunter knows: woodcock.
At a young age I was always with the bird dogs in the kennels until I was old enough to go and watch, then shoot. Prior to grouse hunting, I had hunted quail, chukar, pheasant and woodcock. Most of my hunting was with my dad, so grouse was the only bird he had hunted that I hadn’t. He made his first trip to grouse country a couple years before I did. The bird dogs are my world, and when I found another game bird to hunt, I wanted to burst with excitement.[Read more…] about WHY WE HUNT, Member Payton Gunby
RGS chapters are striving to ensure national forests are properly managed in the Southern Appalachian Region to preserve our grouse hunting traditions for future generations.
The famed conservationist Aldo Leopold once said, “We shall never achieve harmony with the land, anymore than we shall achieve absolute justice or liberty for people. In these higher aspirations the important thing is not to achieve but to strive.” The word “strive”, being the operative, is exactly what RGS chapter volunteers are doing in North Carolina and Georgia to ensure our public lands, namely national forests, are being properly managed for wildlife.[Read more…] about 2016 RGS GROUSE CAMP TOUR – North Carolina & Georgia
RGS 2016 GROUSE CAMP TOUR – Monterey, Virginia
The Birthplace of the Ruffed Grouse Society
Walking down the short main street of Monterey, Virginia, a small mountain town in the northwestern part of the state, it would be difficult to assume that North America’s leading forest wildlife conservation organization was started there way back in 1961, but it was . . . welcome to the birthplace of the Ruffed Grouse Society.[Read more…] about 2016 RGS GROUSE CAMP TOUR – Monterey, Virginia
Be careful . . . ruffed grouse will burn a passion into your hunting heart from which you can’t break free.
Give me just a touch of cooler air and for some reason, I have to start roaming. If the calendar is on the right month, that means the ruffed grouse season is in full swing. I am going to spend my free time experiencing a dense woods devour me, bones and all. I could spend some time waiting in a treestand for a whitetailed deer to come by but, I must admit, I still get fidgety. That sitting in one spot doesn’t give me any relief from that feeling that I have to roam. As I study my simple reaction to cooler weather, some will call it many things. I no longer think of it as being a passed-down tradition, being taught by someone, etc., etc. It is in my blood, and this feeling comes over me much the same as breathing; so simple and natural.[Read more…] about Why We Hunt, with Member Douglas B. Egenolf
Our hats look like oil pans, our favorite vests have more patches and thread than original cloth, and while we may be late to supper, we are never late for opening day. Anything done in moderation shows a lack of interest, and we are among the obsessed. Go hard or go home.
I don’t think we grouse and woodcock hunters are very smart. At least I know I’m not. For what kind of hunter volunteers to get shredded by cover only to get a glimmer of a snap shot at cagey birds that dart behind aspen swales and pine boughs? And what kind of hunter shrugs off a bark dusting so easily that it’s considered normal? We do it again and again so much so that we are reminded of Albert Einstein’s ‘Definition of Insanity’: “Doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result.” Even though I know your answer, it’s not right for me to answer for you. But for me? By Einstein’s definition, I am insane.[Read more…] about Why We Hunt, with Member Tom Keer
RGS and AWS staff and their dogs convened at headquarters in Pittsburgh last week to plan for the future of habitat programs, membership, events and communications.
RGS and AWS staff and some of their grouse dogs convened at headquarters near Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania last week to plan for the future of habitat programs, membership initiatives, events and communications. Numerous presentations and break-out sessions allow staff to collaborate planning at the national level and also specific to their regions. Biologists, regional directors and headquarters staff are able to meet and plan in-person and brainstorm ways to create and implement more effective and efficient programs that enhance healthy forests that support abundant wildlife and preserve our sporting traditions for future generations.[Read more…] about Staff Meeting & Info Updates
Get premier content on grouse and woodcock hunting and conservation, exclusive to RGS and AWS members[Read more…] about Coming soon . . . Ruffed Grouse Society Summer Magazine