Spring Turkey Season Opens March 14

MDWFP - For Mississippi's nearly 50,000 turkey hunters, the day they have been waiting for is almost at hand. The spring turkey season opens on March 14 and ends May 1. For hunters age 15 and under, the youth season begins a week earlier on March 7. Bag limits for the spring season are one adult gobbler or one gobbler with at least a 6 inch beard per day, not to exceed three per spring season. Youth hunters 15 years of age and younger may harvest one gobbler of choice per day, not to exceed three per spring season. The spring turkey season is closed in the following counties or parts thereof: Coahoma, Quitman, and Sunflower.

Expectations for the 2015 season are mixed. On one hand, much of the state experienced an above average hatch this past summer, so overall turkey observations will be increased in many areas. Unfortunately, the 2013 hatch was very poor, and jake observations during the 2014 season were near record lows, suggesting that there will be fewer two-year-old gobblers in the woods this spring. With fewer two-year-old gobblers, hunters should expect less gobbling activity and success calling in legal birds. There will be exceptions in some areas, but the statewide harvest is expected to decrease this year.

Hunters that wish to hunt on Wildlife Management Areas (WMAs) are urged to check area-specific regulations before going afield, as season dates and bag limits on some WMAs differ from the statewide framework. Hunters must purchase a WMA User Permit in addition to the required hunting license prior to hunting on any WMA.

For more information regarding wild turkeys in Mississippi and turkey hunting opportunities, visit us at www.mdwfp.com/turkey or call us at (601) 432-2199.

Photo by Steve Gulledge

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