things to know

1 When spring weather is normal, ruffed grouse drumming peaks during the last two weeks of April. Male grouse drum at all times of day but most often in early morning. They drum at night, too.

2 A drumming session consists of approximately 40 wing beats, but it is difficult to count because the wing movement is so rapid. A male grouse will sit for about four minutes after drumming before repeating the routine.

3 The thump-thump-thump of a grouse's drumming can be heard for a half-mile under ideal conditions. Yet, even heard at close range, drumming is not particularly loud.

4 Male ruffed grouse often have several drumming sites in their home range. Usually though, certain logs are their favorites. An abundance of grouse droppings is a good indicator.