Upland Bird Forecast - Salmon Region

Salmon Region

2019 Conditions – The 2018-19 early and mid-winter was mild, but late winter and spring was cooler and wetter than average. Nesting success and chick survival appears normal for the region. Due to heavy over-winter losses in winter 2017, with the exception of Forest Grouse, most game bird populations are below average.


  • Trend from last year (2018): Up
  • 10-Year Trend (2010-2019): Down
  • There is little pheasant habitat in the Salmon Region and numbers are low. Pheasants are occasionally harvested on private lands in the lower Lemhi and Pahsimeroi valleys.


  • Trend from last year (2018): Up
  • 10-Year Trend (2010-2019): Down
  • Most chukar habitat in the Salmon Region is marginal due to a wide variation in weather conditions. Due to a harsh 2017 winter, few chukars and breeding pairs are still being observed across the region. Hunt near springs and perennial streams early.

Gray Partridge (Hun)

  • Trend from last year (2018): Up
  • 10-Year Trend (2010-2019): Down
  • Gray partridge are uncommon in the Salmon Region, but appeared to have increased and expanded their range over the last two years. A few gray partridge are harvested incidentally by chukar hunters.

Forest Grouse (Dusky, Ruffed, Spruce)

  • Trend from last year (2018): Stable
  • 10-Year Trend (2010-2019): Stable
  • Dusky grouse are the most common forest grouse species in the Salmon Region and are well distributed through most of the drier forested habitats. Dusky grouse production this year appears average and hunting will be fair. Ruffed and spruce grouse habitat is limited to riparian habitats and moist, high elevation forest types.

Greater Sage-grouse

  • Trend from last year (2018): Down
  • 10-Year Trend (2010-2019): Down
  • Lek counts were variable across the region. Production was near normal and hunting will be fair, particularly around springs.

Mourning Dove

  • Trend from last year (2018): Up
  • 10-Year Trend (2010-2019): Up
  • Upland habitat seed production was late this year due to a cool and wet spring. This translates to a normal migration and more doves available for harvest in September.