Grouse and partridge seasons set to open in N.D.

Bismarck, N.D. (AP) – A state wildlife official says hunters
should expect fewer birds in the field than in the past few years
when North Dakota’s sharp-tailed grouse and Hungarian partridge
seasons open on Saturday.

Upland game biologist Aaron Robinson says both bird species were
hurt by the harsh winter and wet spring. He says the four inches of
snow that fell in southwestern North Dakota on June 6 also had an
impact.

Preliminary results from July and August roadside counts
indicate sharp-tailed grouse are down from last year nearly 50
percent statewide. North Dakota’s Hungarian partridge population is
down about 65 percent.

Robinson says hunters will have to a cover a lot of ground to
find pockets of the two birds.

Ruffed grouse populations tend to run in 8-10 year cycles. Stan
Kohn with Game and Fish says populations might actually be up this
year.

The sage grouse season will remain closed because of a low
population.

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