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Author Topic: DEC's Turkey Hunting Proposal  (Read 628 times)

Offline Whitetail Addict

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DEC's Turkey Hunting Proposal
« on: May 20, 2015, 10:50:00 AM »
I've mentioned how our local turkey population is WAY down here this year. They've been slowly declining for the past few years, but this year is pitiful.

I got a newsletter from the DEC last night, wish I could post a link, stating that It's not just here, around home.

Sounds like they're going to cut the fall season this year to two weeks, and only one bird statewide. I doubt any of us like to see shorter seasons, and smaller bag limits, but I'm all for it if it helps the birds bounce back.

The DEC is accepting public comments on their proposal, from now til june 29th. Please look into it and voice your opinions.

 Even if you hunt an area of the state that doesn't seem to be affected YET, your opinions may make the difference between continued good hunting, and what we're dealing with here at the present.

Thank You.

Bob

Offline Bobtulowiecki

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Re: DEC's Turkey Hunting Proposal
« Reply #1 on: May 20, 2015, 11:48:00 AM »
Nice to see this reduction in the fall season.  Hopefully the populations will bounce back!

Offline Izzy

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Re: DEC's Turkey Hunting Proposal
« Reply #2 on: May 20, 2015, 01:57:00 PM »
I thought they'd be absent up north after this winter but I saw two hens in the harshest of New Yorks eco-zones, Moose River Plains. I know two turkeys don't represent whats happening as a whole and Im all for a shortened season.

    This is a big state and Im always interested in the observations of fellas from other regions.I only hunted a few times down here and saw some birds but not as many and the only gobbling I heard were from the birds behind my house which were helped out all winter by bird feeders and standing corn. My hunting partner turkey hunts often and says "Something Aint Right" around here. We'll see.

Offline Whitetail Addict

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Re: DEC's Turkey Hunting Proposal
« Reply #3 on: May 20, 2015, 02:47:00 PM »
I'm surprised the birds you saw up north made it through the winter Izzy. It had to be a tough one on the deer up there too. I haven't gotten up there to look things over yet this spring, but I will soon.

It was bad here in the central part of the state this past winter. I know the turkeys have a hard time getting around to find something to eat when we have deep, fluffy snow for extended periods, and they can't get up on top. It was like that for most of the winter here last year, and I blamed the lack of birds on that, combined with a long stretch of below zero weather. A wet spring last year couldn't have helped either.

I'm sure that had some bearing on it, but from what I read from the DEC, there may be more to it than that. Thanks Izzy.

Online Cyclic-Rivers

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Re: DEC's Turkey Hunting Proposal
« Reply #4 on: May 20, 2015, 05:43:00 PM »
Do they have anything to point the finger at or is the issue a multitude of factors?

I have definitely noticed fewer turkeys as everytime else I know.

I do my part to help out by being a bad hunter.
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Online ron w

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Re: DEC's Turkey Hunting Proposal
« Reply #5 on: May 20, 2015, 05:46:00 PM »
In the last few years I have seen a lot more birds up north than down in the southern zone. Enough that when I do hunt them I go north and not around home. Birds a not hunted as hard and seem to respond to calling much better. It will be interesting to see how this pans out.
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Offline Wapiti Chaser

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Re: DEC's Turkey Hunting Proposal
« Reply #6 on: May 20, 2015, 10:08:00 PM »
Bob did you see the rest of that press release ? looks like antlerless only during the first 15 days of archery season at least in the high deer areas like the finger lakes is being considered.
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Offline Whitetail Addict

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Re: DEC's Turkey Hunting Proposal
« Reply #7 on: May 21, 2015, 08:10:00 AM »
I did see that, but I got so wrapped up in the turkey aspect of it, I forgot to mention it.

Sounds like they have more deer than they know what to do with in some parts of the state. Thanks.

Bob

Offline Whitetail Addict

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Re: DEC's Turkey Hunting Proposal
« Reply #8 on: May 21, 2015, 09:23:00 AM »
Quote
Originally posted by Cyclic-Rivers:
Do they have anything to point the finger at or is the issue a multitude of factors?

I have definitely noticed fewer turkeys as everytime else I know.

I do my part to help out by being a bad hunter.
They do Charlie. They say the reasons for the decline are caused by changes in habitat, higher predator populations, wet weather during the nesting season, and the harvest of hens during the fall hunting seasons.

I was looking into it online a while back, and came across an article stating that they've found something called Lymphoproliferative disease in wild turkeys.

Some of the birds tested showed lesions on their head and feet, but most that tested positive, were asymptomatic. They don't know a lot about the disease in wild birds at this point, but they said it seems to be spreading throughout the eastern US.

They did say that some of the birds that tested positive had tumors growing around, and over their eyes, that would cause them to slowly lose their sight, making them more vulnerable to predators, and others had them in their throats, which would prevent them from eating, and to eventually starve.

Michael Schiavone, a NYSDEC wildlife biologist, said since they've started looking for the disease, It's turned up everywhere in the state. Biologists in other eastern states have had the same findings.

Mr. Schiavone stated that some of what appear to be healthy birds killed by hunters, have tested positive, so they're not sure what to think of it right now.

I know we have a healthy coyote population here, along with raccoons, and we seem to have more fisher and bobcats every year, in places where we haven't had them in years past.

I saw over twenty birds in different fields around my house at the same time, during the last week of season last year, and I'm sure there were a few others around, that I didn't see at the time.

The birds don't stay up here on top of the mountain during the winter, but they've always come back to those same fields each spring. I could literally count the birds that I've seen in those fields this year, on one hand.

I thought for sure, that that big of a decline had to have been due to the bad winter we had here. It just seemed like too many birds to have been lost over the course of one winter, for other reasons. I still think it played a part, but there seems to be more to it than that at this point.

What ever the cause, or combination of causes, I hope they get it figured out and are able to do something about it. Springtime without gobbling turkeys, is a pretty depressing thought for me.

Bob

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Re: DEC's Turkey Hunting Proposal
« Reply #9 on: May 31, 2015, 11:03:00 AM »
I think the turkeys took an awful hit last winter with the relentless deep snow and bitter cold. They do need some intervention to snap back IMHO.
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Offline Izzy

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Re: DEC's Turkey Hunting Proposal
« Reply #10 on: June 22, 2015, 01:21:00 PM »
I saw my backyard hen last night for the 1st time in 3 weeks with a pile of poults. Looked like at least 10 of em the size of tennis balls. I just wish I could do something about the hawks and cats.

Offline Whitetail Addict

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Re: DEC's Turkey Hunting Proposal
« Reply #11 on: June 22, 2015, 01:52:00 PM »
I'm glad to hear that she's got some poults Izzy.

I've been seeing two of the only three hens I saw earlier this spring, just about every day after not seeing them for a while. No poults though.

I actually saw the only tom I've seen here since mid May, breed a hen yesterday morning. I hear him gobble early almost every morning, and he's following the hens around strutting all day again. I'm thinking the poults didn't make it through all the heavy rains we've had here over the past several weeks, and they're trying again. Wish I could do something to help too.

Bob

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Re: DEC's Turkey Hunting Proposal
« Reply #12 on: June 25, 2015, 08:37:00 PM »
I saw a  Jake strutting for a  hen on Monday. probably saw 15 turkeys to and from NYC.

I saw countless deer and a few fawns as well.  No poults though.

Glad your back yard hen is doing well Izzy.
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Offline Izzy

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Re: DEC's Turkey Hunting Proposal
« Reply #13 on: July 08, 2015, 02:07:00 PM »
I saw a bunch of local gobblers strutting this past weekend as well as one big boy with a hen????????? Whats going on here?  :dunno:

Offline Whitetail Addict

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Re: DEC's Turkey Hunting Proposal
« Reply #14 on: July 09, 2015, 01:25:00 PM »
Izzy, I think maybe all the heavy rain we've had killed off a bunch of the poults, and they're trying again. I don't know what else to make of it.

I took a walk a couple evenings ago, and flushed a hen and some poults out of some low trees a little while before dark. I'm not sure how many little ones were there, because I walked away from them as they flew into some other trees that were close by, so I wouldn't bother them more than I already had. There were several though, and I was glad to see them.

Bob

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