DNR announces no permits in 2017.
There's some bad news for bird hunters in Wisconsin. The Department of Natural Resources has just announced there will be no permits for sharp-tailed grouse this year.
The decision comes after biologists, conservation groups and the Sharp-Tailed Grouse Advisory committee reviewed survey data. Normally they then recommend a number of permits for hunting. But this year they determined there was an 18 percent decline in the grouse population.
The DNR is working on habitat management that they are hopeful will help the birds rebound in population. While there will be no hunting of sharp-tailed grouse this year, the animals will retain status as a game bird.
Unfortunately, according to the DNR's website, a downward trend in the grouse population is something that has been happening for some time in Wisconsin due to habitat loss. The northwestern part of the state now houses most of the grouse populations.
"In the meantime, those who are passionate about Wisconsin's strong and historic tradition of sharp-tailed grouse hunting should remain encouraged through significant partnerships that exist in the northwest part of the state to manage young forest and barren habitats that sharp-tailed grouse depend upon for survival," a press release for the DNR states.