Phillips County News - One Nation, Under God

By Parker Heinlein
Outdoors columnist 

Canaries in coal mine?


October 16, 2019

Sage grouse season closed last week.

For the second year in a row I didn’t get one. I didn’t even see one.

It wasn’t for lack of effort. I’ve been hunting more days than not since the upland bird season opened.

The country I hunt used to be heavily populated by sage grouse. There were at least 40 males on a lek there last April. But come September, the birds weren’t to be found.

I experienced the same thing last fall.

Sage grouse have been disappearing from their traditional haunts for some years now. Loss of habitat and West Nile virus are usually cited as the reason.

Where I hun...

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