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Ohio changes turkey check-in procedure

From the Ohio Department of Natural Resources

-- Ohio turkey hunters must still report their harvest of turkeys but they are no longer required to take their turkey to a check station for physical inspection. Instead, hunters have three options to complete the new automated game check.

Check-in options include:

* Online check at
* By calling (877)824-4864, an option only available to those required to purchase a turkey permit to hunt turkeys. 
* At any license agent. Find a list at
Game-check transactions are available online and by telephone seven days a week and during holidays.  License agents' locations are be available for turkey check-in during normal business hours, and hunters should call the license agent for hours of operation. All turkeys must be checked in by 11 p.m. the day of kill.

Landowner hunters who are not required to purchase a spring turkey permit must use the internet or any authorized license agent to check their turkey.  Hunters who tag their turkey as a landowner harvest cannot use the phone-in method.

Immediately upon harvest, the hunter must detach the temporary tag from the permit, fill in the necessary information using a pen, and attach it to the turkey.  Landowner hunters must create their own temporary tag and attach it to the turkey immediately upon harvest.  Once the turkey is temporary tagged, they may legally transport it.

Hunters are encouraged to complete the automated game-check and permanent tagging process in a quiet, sheltered area.

When a hunter has checked in their turkey online or with an agent, they will receive a game check receipt with a permanent tag number printed on it.  Hunters using the phone-in method will receive the number over the phone.  

This number must be written on the permanent tag on the turkey permit by all hunters.  Hunters must then fill in the date and time of kill and sign the permanent tag.  Then, they must detach the permanent tag from the turkey permit and attach it to the turkey.  The temporary tag can be discarded after a permanent tag is attached.

The permanent paper tag must stay with the turkey as long as any part of the turkey is held and replaces the metal tag of years past.  Hunters should also be aware that the license and permit paper is not waterproof and should be protected in a plastic bag or license holder.

When purchased at a license agent location, licenses and permits will appear on the green, left hand side of the document and the remaining space will be printed with information relevant to the license or permit purchased.  Those hunters purchasing over the internet will print their licenses and permits on plain white paper.  

Licenses and permits purchased on the Internet may be cut along the solid black line and folded on the dotted lines for easy carrying.

A customer identification number will be assigned to everyone using the Division of Wildlife's automated license sales and game check system. This number will be issued to the hunter after they provide the required information for a customer account.  This unique number will be the hunter's customer ID number for as long as they obtain licenses, permits, stamps, Wild Ohio magazine or apply for a controlled hunt or fishing lottery.  

Hunters can print and laminate a customer card with their name and customer ID number for future use by logging onto and choosing the Manage Your Customer Account link.

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