The hunting seasons for ruffed grouse and woodcock are open now through Dec. 31, according to the Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department.
State fish and wildlife officials say the key to hunting success is to find suitable habitat for these upland game birds. Woodcock are often found in alders along brooks and near beaver ponds as well as in new-growth small timber where old fields are reverting to forest. Ruffed grouse also frequent the same habitat, and they are particularly fond of the apples they find under wild apple trees.
Regulations require woodcock hunters to make sure their shotgun is capable of holding no more than three shells, and they must register for the federal Harvest Information Program on Vermont Fish & Wildlife’s website vtfishandwildlife.com or by calling toll-free 1-877-306-7091.