As expected, spring turkey kill drops off from last year
COLUMBUS, OH – Just as the Ohio DNR Division of Wildlife predicted, this spring’s turkey kill was down. Division of Wildlife biologist Mark Wiley told me before the season to expect the harvest to be a bit down due to two consecutive poor reproductive years.
Ohio hunters checked a total of 19,088 wild turkeys during the 2019 spring wild turkey hunting season, according to the Ohio DNR Division of Wildlife. In 2018, hunters checked a total of 22,635 wild turkeys.
Hunters reported 17,770 birds during the 2019 wild turkey south zone and northeast zone hunting seasons compared to 20,775 birds in 2018. Youth hunters took 1,318 birds during the 2019 youth season compared to 1,860 in 2018.
Ohio’s 2019 spring wild turkey season was open from Monday, April 22 to Sunday, May 19 in the south zone and from Monday, April 29 to Sunday, May 26 in the northeast zone. The youth season was April 13-14. Hunters can view the 2019 spring turkey season zone map and harvest regulations at wildohio.gov.
Wild turkeys were extirpated in Ohio by 1904 and were reintroduced in the 1950s by the Division of Wildlife. Ohio’s first modern-day wild turkey season opened in 1966 in nine counties, and hunters checked 12 birds. The wild turkey harvest topped 1,000 for the first time in 1984. Spring turkey hunting opened statewide in 2000, and Ohio hunters checked more than 20,000 wild turkeys for the first time that year. Ohio’s record spring turkey harvest was reported in 2001, when 26,156 wild turkeys were checked.