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NY spring turkey season opens May 1

From the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation

-- Spring turkey season opens May 1 in upstate New York lying north of the Bronx-Westchester County boundary. It follows the annual Youth Turkey Hunting weekend April 23 and 24.  The youth turkey hunt is open in all of upstate New York including Suffolk County.

Requirements for Youth Turkey Hunt include:

-- Eligible hunters are 12 to 15 years of age with a junior hunting license and a turkey permit.

-- Youth 12 and 13 years of age must be accompanied by a parent, legal guardian, or adult over 21 years of age with written permission from their parent or legal guardian. Youth 14 and 15 years of age must be accompanied by a parent, legal guardian, or adult over 18 years of age with written permission from their parent or legal guardian.

-- The accompanying adult must have a current hunting license and turkey permit. The adult may assist the youth hunter, including calling, but may not carry a firearm or bow, or kill or attempt to kill a wild turkey during the youth hunt.

-- Shooting hours are from one-half hour before sunrise to noon each day.

-- The bag limit for the youth weekend is one bearded bird. This bird becomes part of the youth's regular Spring season bag limit of 2 bearded birds. A second bird may be taken in upstate New York north of the Bronx-Westchester County boundary beginning May 1.

During the regular season May 1 to 31, hunting is permitted in most areas of the state, except for New York City and Long Island. Hunters must have a turkey hunting permit in addition to their small game hunting or sportsman license. Shooting hours are from one-half hour before sunrise to noon each day.

Hunters may take 2 bearded turkeys during the spring season, but only 1 bird per day, and  may not use rifles or handguns firing a bullet. Hunters may hunt with a shotgun or handgun loaded with shot sizes no larger than No. 2 or smaller than No. 8, or with a bow and arrow.

Successful hunters must fill out the tag which comes with their turkey permit and immediately attach it to any turkey harvested, and must report the harvest within seven days of taking a bird by calling (866) 426-3778 or reporting online at http://www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/8316.html.

For more information about turkey hunting in New York, see the 2010-11 Hunting and Trapping Regulations Guide or visit the Turkey Hunting pages of the DEC website at http://www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/8366.html.

An analysis of the 2010 spring turkey take, including a county-by-county breakdown, can be found online at http://www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/30420.html. Figures for the 2010 fall turkey season and county-by-county breakdown can be found at http://www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/30412.html.

Turkey Hunters for Ruffed Grouse Drumming Survey needed

Turkey hunters in pursuit of wary spring gobblers are ideally suited to monitor ruffed grouse during the breeding season. The characteristic sound of a drumming male grouse is as much a part of the spring woods as yelping hens and gobbling toms. Turkey hunters can record the number of grouse they hear drumming while afield to help track the distribution and abundance of this exciting game bird. To get a survey form, go to http://www.dec.ny.gov/animals/48169.html or call (518) 402-8886.
       
To participate in the Summer Wild Turkey Sighting Survey or other wildlife surveys visit http://www.dec.ny.gov/animals/1155.html.

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