Youth hunters get a bang out of turkey hunt

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(Photo courtesy of Bob “Greenie” Grewell)

It appears Ohio’s youth hunters are better at the game than are their adult counterparts.

During the just-concluded two-day youth-only spring wild turkey-hunting season, the participants shot 512 more birds than they did during the like-2019 season.

However, for the opener of the state’s southern zone general wild turkey-hunting season on Monday (March 20), hunters killed 549 fewer birds this year than for the 2019 season opener (2,430 turkeys verses 2,979 turkeys,respectively). Coincidentally, that 549 decline is nearly identical to the youth season’s 512 bird gain.

And the drop indicates a steady decline, too. In 2018 the southern zone’s spring turkey season opener tally was 3,316 birds while the figure for its 2017 counterpart was 3,123 birds.

Ohio has two zones for spring turkey hunting: the 83-county south zone and the five-county northeast zone. The south zone opening day was Monday. The northeast zone, which includes Ashtabula, Cuyahoga, Geauga, Lake, and Trumbull counties in Ohio’s snow belt, begins Monday, May 4.

The top 11 counties for wild turkey harvest during this year’s southern zone opening day include: Harrison (93); Belmont (89); Guernsey (80); Tuscarawas (73); Jefferson (70); Monroe (69); Columbiana (65); Meigs (65); Washington (65); Brown (64) and Coshocton (64).

Also, note that of the 83-county southern zone, fully 56 members saw a decline while six secured identical 2019 and 2020 open day kills. The remaining 21 counties in this zone saw gains.

Here is the county-by-county list of all wild turkeys checked by hunters during Monday’s southern zone opener with their respective 2019 figures in parentheses:

Adams: 63 (72); Allen: 9 (9); Ashland: 25 (36); Athens: 48 (77); Auglaize: 6 (5); Belmont: 89 (85); Brown: 64 (74); Butler: 32 (31); Carroll: 63 (77); Champaign: 14 (14); Clark: 1 (1); Clermont: 54 (60); Clinton: 14 (13); Columbiana: 65 (66); Coshocton: 64 (81); Crawford: 7 (9); Darke: 7 (13); Defiance: 40 (34); Delaware: 25 (16); Erie: 4 (11); Fairfield: 14 (16); Fayette: 2 (1); Franklin: 5 (1); Fulton: 21 (16); Gallia: 54 (68); Greene: 4 (3); Guernsey: 80 (86); Hamilton: 24 (14); Hancock: 5 (8); Hardin: 19 (23); Harrison: 93 (87); Henry: 7 (12); Highland: 61 (62); Hocking: 40 (55); Holmes: 29 (56); Huron: 20 (25); Jackson: 60 (66); Jefferson: 70 (74); Knox: 42 (60); Lawrence: 36 (37); Licking: 50 (63); Logan: 22 (21); Lorain: 16 (24); Lucas: 6 (14); Madison: 2 (2); Mahoning: 30 (35); Marion: 6 (3); Medina: 17 (15); Meigs: 65 (89); Mercer: 2 (3); Miami: 2 (0); Monroe: 69 (87); Montgomery: 5 (6); Morgan: 48 (71); Morrow: 16 (34); Muskingum: 55 (88); Noble: 47 (77); Ottawa: 0 (3); Paulding: 11 (12); Perry: 43 (57); Pickaway: 4 (2); Pike: 21 (44); Portage: 36 (38); Preble: 21 (21); Putnam: 7 (10); Richland: 25 (44); Ross: 48 (59); Sandusky: 5 (6); Scioto: 39 (62); Seneca: 15 (27); Shelby: 7 (11); Stark: 34 (39); Summit: 6 (11); Tuscarawas: 73 (94); Union: 9 (8); Van Wert: 2 (2); Vinton: 42 (52); Warren: 18 (17); Washington: 65 (97); Wayne: 22 (15); Williams: 26 (48); Wood: 2 (5); Wyandot: 11 (9).

Categories: Bloggers on Hunting, Turkey

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