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New game license rules affect NM spring turkey hunters

From New Mexico Department of Game and Fish

-- Spring turkey hunters are reminded they are now required to purchase a game-hunting license before they can purchase a turkey license or apply for big-game licenses.

Hunters who apply for big-game licenses must purchase their game-hunting or game-hunting and fishing license online – not from a license vendor. Turkey licenses may be purchased online or from a vendor.

Although hunters can request a refund if they are unsuccessful in the draw, those who plan to hunt turkeys this spring are advised not to request a refund or risk having to pay for a second game-hunting license if they are successful in the draw.

“If you plan to hunt turkeys this spring and you are applying for big-game licenses, your best option is to purchase a 2012-2013 game-hunting or game-hunting and fishing license and plan to use it all year,”  Jim Lane, director, said. “The licenses not only will allow hunters to apply for big-game licenses, but also allow them to purchase a turkey license before the season opens April 15, and to hunt small-game during the license year.”

Game-hunting and Game-hunting and Fishing licenses are available online only until March 29 when they will go on sale at license vendors statewide. Online:

The deadline to apply for big-game hunting licenses is March 28.

Spring turkey season opens April 15. Hunters who select the refund option and are successful in the draw will not receive their Game-hunting license until the draw results are available in May.

That means they will have to purchase a separate Game-hunting license to be eligible to buy a turkey license.

Game-hunting licenses cost $15 for residents and $65 for nonresidents. Turkey licenses cost $25 for residents and $100 for nonresidents.

For more information about turkey hunting, license fees and requirements, or the big-game draw, please contact the Department of Game and Fish toll-free at (888) 248-6866 or online at

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