Tuesday, November 12, 2013

A visit from a Grouse

As I have mentioned in previous entries, I was working on a group project within my Mammalogy course which we dubbed "The Fisher Project". The project, in a nutshell, was that we had access to beautiful private land, a GPS collar funded by that private landowner, and the support of our local state biologists and professor to try and live-trap a fisher. We'd learn all about REAL science, put into action. Research design, protocol writing, learning how to program fixes on this collar. We ALMOST had it together, except no damn fisher. None! We had 3 locations: 1 on this private property, 1 on the property I live on, and then a 3rd private property. All have history of fishers. In fact, the day before we set the trap at my house, I had a fisher on camera trap.

So, since the final write-up is due next week in class, we all bailed on the project (to be picked up later), so that we could actually write something and get a grade for it. Disappointing, but realistic.

The last time I checked the camera at my house, I got a nice picture of a Ruffed Grouse (Bonasa umbellus). He is quite close to the camera, which is a flash camera, so it's a little overexposed. I also included a picture which shows an Eastern cottontail (Sylvilagus floridanus). Nothing too exciting, but I wanted to show a set up of our live-trap from the side. It's just basically a "hav-a-hart" trap, but the brand we used is Tomahawk.

Anyway, the Ruffed Grouse picture is pretty neat, and I wanted to share! Check this link out for other Ruffed Grouse entries!

Ruffed Grouse - Schoharie, NY

Eastern Cottontail - Schoharie, NY


  1. Live traps here in NZ, can be activated by a foot standing on a plate , inside, that activates the lever, the door drops down, or a swing bar type, as the animal puts its head through the bar to get some food, that causes the rod holding the door open to slide back, and bingo, the door closes .Do you get an animal in your trap? Pity the fisher did not come, I looked it up on Google, not the prettiest, related to the weasel, which we have here in NZ. Hope the next assignment goes well. Greetings from Jean.

  2. Fishers are pretty smart. They are now allowed to be trapped here in CT and I know a few trappers who are still skunked, but yet we seem them often. Hang in there. Loving that Grouse. We don't see them like we used to and I loved hunting them or I should say chasing them as I bagged very few. They can make the best shooter look like a rookie!

  3. Interesting, Jean. Do you know what kind of weasel you have? I know NZ doesn't have native mammals, so I'm wondering how and why weasels are there.


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