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Minnesota extends spring turkey application deadline

From the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources

-- Turkey hunters have more time this year than they've had in the past to apply for this spring's hunt, either electronically or by telephone.

The deadline to apply for the 2011 spring season has been extended by about two weeks. Applications are now being accepted through Jan. 14, wherever hunting and fishing licenses are sold, and online.
Also new this year: the youth application process is eliminated, and over-the-counter only permits will be available for the hunt's last two time periods.

"The spring turkey application deadline tends to sneak up on hunters," said Bill Penning, farmland wildlife program leader. "Although we've allowed additional time this year, we still encourage hunters to apply early and avoid the last-minute rush."

This spring's hunt will consist of six five-day and two seven-day seasons. All resident and nonresident wild turkey hunters interested in hunting this spring must apply electronically via the internet or by phone toll-free at (888)665-4236. Resident hunters must pay a nonrefundable $3 application fee at the time of application while nonresidents must pay a nonrefundable $3.50 transaction fee.

Key changes include  licenses for the last two time periods will be sold over-the-counter only, hunters no longer must indicate a second choice of season on the application, and  youth 17 and younger by April 13 are not eligible to participate in the lottery and should purchase a license for the season of their choice over-the-counter.

"Hunters are strongly encouraged to read the application materials before applying for the lottery," Penning said. "We want them to be aware of all the changes made to the application process."

Hunters who are successful for in the drawing and choose not to purchase a tag will lose the current year's preference point for future drawings, but not accumulated preference from past years. Hunters who were not successful in the drawing will be eligible to purchase surplus turkey permits. These are sold, on a first-come, first-served basis in mid March.

Archery spring turkey licenses will once again be available for residents and nonresidents and may be purchased for the last two time periods only.

All wild turkey hunters seeking to hunt in spring 2011 may obtain an application information sheet at DNR license agents or view hunt information online.  Hunt information materials include a map of wild turkey permit areas, permit quotas, dates and information on changes. For more information, call the Information Center at (651) 296-6157 or toll-free in greater Minnesota at (888)646-6367.

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