Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 36

Hard Times for Grouse: Pennsylvania's
state bird, the ruffed grouse, is struggling
in the Commonwealth. The grouse population is at its lowest in more than 50 years
of monitoring. Grouse rely on thick young
forests, and the mature forests blanketing
Penn's Woods severely limit their numbers.
An infectious disease also may be contributing
to their decline. West Nile virus, a mosquitotransmitted virus native to Africa, affects many
bird species and was first identified in North America
during the summer of 1999. By 2002, West Nile virus
had expanded statewide. Grouse populations declined
precipitously from 2002 to 2005 and no robust population recovery has followed. To assess the long-term impact
of West Nile virus on grouse abundance, the Game Birds Section launched a
study that was the first of its kind. Working with the Ruffed Grouse Society and
research collaborators in Pennsylvania, New York, Canada, Colorado and Idaho,
wild-collected grouse chicks were exposed to West Nile virus in a laboratory to
assess the lethality of the disease to grouse. Results indicate that West Nile virus
can produce fatal infections in grouse. We currently are evaluating the impacts
on the birds that were infected, but survived. These experimental data will provide a basis for understanding potential impacts of West Nile virus on grouse
in Pennsylvania. In recent months, we have been expanding on the laboratory
studies by testing the blood of hunter-harvested grouse for exposure to West Nile
virus. We thank the many grouse hunters from throughout the state who have
supported this research by submitting blood and feather samples from grouse.
- Lisa Williams, Game Birds Section Biologist
National Trap-Use Survey: The United States Furbearer Conservation Technical
Working Group recently coordinated a national survey of trappers to determine
trends in ownership and use of traps since the start of Best Management Practices
(BMPs) for trapping. Pennsylvania trappers have participated in trap-testing
research for the BMP program since 1998. Nearly 7,000 trappers were surveyed
nationally; about 1,100 trappers were from Northeastern states, including Pennsylvania. Asked to name the four furbearers most important to their trapping, trappers
most often selected raccoon (62 percent), coyote (55 percent), muskrat (37 percent), beaver (33 percent), red fox (30 percent) and bobcat (27 percent). The traps
used most often nationwide are the No. 1½ coil-spring (37 percent); dog-proof
36



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016

Contents
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - Intro
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - Cover1
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - Cover2
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - A
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - B
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - C
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - D
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - Contents
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 2
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 3
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 4
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 5
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 6
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 7
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 8
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 9
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 10
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 11
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 12
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 13
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 14
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 15
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 16
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 17
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 18
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 19
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 20
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 21
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 22
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 23
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 24
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 25
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 26
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 27
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 28
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 29
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 30
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 31
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 32
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 33
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 34
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 35
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 36
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 37
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 38
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 39
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 40
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 41
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 42
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 43
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 44
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 45
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 46
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 47
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 48
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 49
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 50
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 51
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 52
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 53
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 54
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 55
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 56
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 57
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 58
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 59
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 60
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 61
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 62
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 63
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - 64
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - Cover3
Pennsylvania Game News - March 2016 - Cover4
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