- Currently streaming on (links below): Apple TV, Amazon Prime, Google Play, Vimeo, Vudu, and Microsoft
- Cable: Comcast, Dish, Verizon, Frontier, and Cox
The one-hour feature film featuring the story of the Public Grouse in America, produced in collaboration between Backcountry Hunters and Anglers and Project Upland Magazine is now streaming.
About the 1-hour Documentary Film Public Grouse
There comes a time when one gets older and becomes more aware of the world around them. Sure, I’ve experienced this in many ways in life, but I will never forget how confused I was over the concept of “public lands.” Every newsstand shelf would carry hunting magazines with articles about “public lands” this and “public access” that. Flipping through the pages, I wondered to myself, “Doesn’t everyone hunt public lands? What else is there?” Those, of course, were the thoughts of a young naive New Englander who did not come from a world where private property (at least for hunting) was a thing.
Ruffed grouse hunting further compounded this mystery as I cannot recall ever shooting a grouse on anything other than ground designated either public access or public land. In fact, the sheer quantity of land needed to maintain grouse habitat with hunt-able populations seemed just about impossible for any private landowner. Some species are simply more finicky than others and while, yes, private land grouse hunting does exist, it is a tiny minority in the pursuit of grouse hunting.
This need, coupled with our passion for grouse hunting, has wooed many of us into a love for public lands, and thus into the fight to protect them. When I think of my childhood memories all the way to my present day trips out with my bird dog, the fact that it was and is all possible because of public lands is not lost on me. Public lands have become part of who I am. The birds I love to pursue, at their most fundamental and basic level, are public grouse.
The Year of the #PublicGrouse
Earlier this year, Project Upland Magazine in collaboration with Backcountry Hunters and Anglers, joined together to tell the story of our beloved grouse family of birds. The idea was simple: capture the people, places, and birds that make the story of grouse and public lands in North America so important to us. We sought to celebrate the truth that without public lands we would not know any of the grouse species in the capacity we do. They are a part of our culture, the fabric of American grouse hunting.
The plan was to cover seven locations, six species, and a wide spread of characters from our community, all in a one-hour feature film. Springtime brought us to the sage grouse lekking grounds of Montana and to the unusual pursuit of sooty grouse hunting in Alaskan Springs. As September came into swing, we headed to the plains of North Dakota, hot on the heels of the sharp-tailed grouse before heading to the high country of Utah to chase the non-native white-tailed ptarmigan. As the leaves began to turn color and the season shifted into fall, we spent time hunting spruce grouse in Minnesota before applying our efforts to the iconic ruffed grouse in both northern and southern Appalachia.
Listen to and interview about the Minnesota spruce grouse segment: Wildlife Biology, Wingshooting and Three Women That Share a Passion for Both – Project Upland Podcast #96
A Look Back on the Successful 2020 film Tour with Backcountry Hunters and Anglers
We envisioned taking the film on the road to screen it at events in 20 locations across the lower 48 states. So, over the course of a few weeks in February and March 2020, powered by local chapters of Backcountry Hunters and Anglers, #PublicGrouse will be shared as a celebration of our lands, our birds, and our stories. To further this focus, the Spring 2020 issue of Project Upland Magazine will revolve around the theme of #PublicGrouse, which will dive even deeper into the stories of this iconic part of the American public lands story.
|2/5/20||Syracuse, NY||SOLD OUT|
|2/5/20||Missoula, MT||SOLD OUT|
|2/5/20||Minneapolis, MN||SOLD OUT|
|2/5/20||Fargo, ND||SOLD OUT|
|2/5/20||Rapid City, SD||SOLD OUT|
|2/6/20||Green Bay, WI||SOLD OUT|
|2/7/20||Reno, NV||SOLD OUT|
|2/8/20||Thomasville, GA||SOLD OUT|
|2/10/20||Gaylord, MI||SOLD OUT|
|2/12/20||Portland, ME||SOLD OUT|
|2/12/20||Pelham, NH||SOLD OUT|
|2/18/20||Charlotte, NC||SOLD OUT|
|2/19/20||Pittsburgh, PA||SOLD OUT|
|2/20/20||Laramie, WY||SOLD OUT|
|2/20/20||Wichita, KS||SOLD OUT|
|2/20/20||Salt Lake City, UT||SOLD OUT|
|2/22/20||Cincinnati, OH||SOLD OUT|
|2/27/20||Boise, ID||SOLD OUT|
|2/27/20||Fort Collins, CO||SOLD OUT|
|2/27/20||Spokane, WA||SOLD OUT|
It is our hope that this film tour brings the community closer together and amplifies our public lands battle cry. As we face an uncertain future for grouse populations and hunting on public lands in the United States, it becomes crucially important that we are conscious of how the unique nature of public lands has given us the gift of grouse.
We want to hear your #PublicGrouse stories on social media! Over the course of this hunting season use the hashtag #PublicGrouse and tag Backcountry Hunters and Anglers, Project Upland, OnXHunt, and Eukanuba to be entered for a chance to win prizes! We are also on the hunt for more stories to tell in online articles about what the relationship between public lands and grouse means to everyday hunters. This is the year of the #PublicGrouse.
A.J. DeRosa founded Project Upland in 2014 as an excuse to go hunting more often (and it worked). A New England native, he grew up hunting and has spent over 30 years in pursuit of big and small game species across three continents. He started collecting guns on his 18th birthday and eventually found his passion for side-by-side shotguns, inspiring him to travel the world to meet the people and places from which they come. Looking to turn his passion into inspiration for others, AJ was first published in 2004 and went on to write his first book The Urban Deer Complex in 2014. He soon discovered a love for filmmaking, particularly the challenge of capturing ruffed grouse with a camera, which led to the award-winning Project Upland film series. AJ's love for all things wild has caused him to advocate on the federal and state levels to promote and expand conservation policy, habitat funding, and upland game bird awareness. He currently serves as the Strafford County New Hampshire Fish & Game Commissioner in order to give back to his community and to further the mission of the agency. When those hunting excuses are in play, you can find him wandering behind his Wirehaired Pointing Griffon in the mountains of New England and anywhere else the birds take them.