TWIN FALLS, Idaho (KLIX) Game officials say the sage grouse opener this last weekend was a little behind from previous hunts. Idaho Department of Fish and Game announced the numbers of sage grouse brought in during the first weekend in the Shoshone Basin came in lower than last year. Idaho Fish and Game surveyed about 70 hunters Saturday at a check station in the South Hills:

 

The Shoshone Basin check station talked to 68 hunters, that harvested 27 sage grouse, it took hunters an average of 9.81 hours per bird, for 40 percent success.

In 2016, 62 hunters took 31 birds, in 6.26 hours per bird. In 2015, 58 hunters harvested 38 sage grouse, averaging 4.08 hours per bird.

Fish and Game officials say hunters in the Salmon Falls Creek Dam area did better than last year with 46 hunters taking in 30 birds in a little more than four hours. During the survey, hunters reported seeing fewer birds than they did the year before; officials believe wet weather may have disbursed birds from their usual water holes. There were also more hunters noticed out in the field.