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OK youth spring turkey season gives first shot to young hunters

From Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation

-- Oklahoma’s youth turkey hunters have the annual opportunity to head to the woods a few days earlier than other hunters during the youth turkey season March 31 to April 1 in most of the state and April 21 to 22 in the southeast region.

The youth spring turkey seasons are offered to youth under 18 years of age who are accompanied by an adult 18 years old or older. The adult may not hunt or possess archery or firearms equipment. While eligible youth can hunt during both youth seasons, the limit for both youth seasons combined is one tom turkey. Turkeys taken by youth turkey hunters during the spring youth turkey seasons are included in the youth hunters' county and regular spring season limits.

Youth who participate in the youth spring turkey season not only get an early opportunity to hunt, but youth who do not harvest a turkey during the youth season may use their unfilled turkey licenses during the regular spring season, April 6 to May 6 in most of the state, and April 23  to May 6 in the southeast region, which includes Atoka, Choctaw, Coal, Latimer, LeFlore, McCurtain, Pittsburg and Pushmataha counties.

To hunt during the youth spring turkey season, resident youth under 16 and non-residents under 14 are not required to have a hunting license, but they are required to have a turkey license or proof of exemption. Resident youth ages 16 and 17 and non-resident youth ages 14-17 must possess an appropriate hunting license and turkey license for each bird hunted or proof of exemption.

Youth who have not completed a Wildlife Department hunter education course  can still hunt turkeys during the youth spring season, but they must purchase an apprentice-designated hunting license and turkey permit as required.

Additionally, the adult who accompanies an apprentice-designated turkey license holder must be a licensed hunter and hunter education certified or otherwise exempt from license and hunter education requirements. Consult the current Oklahoma Hunting Guide for full details and regulations as well as a listing of counties with one-tom limits and two-tom limits.

For more information or to purchase a license online, visit https://www.wildlifedepartment.com/forget1/OnlineSales.aspx.

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