While leaving behind the doldrums of winter, turkey season offers a renewal of the pursuit that we hunters are addicted to and live for. Choosing a quality turkey state is easier than ever, but here are our top five states to get your turkey hunting fix.
5) New York
Yes, you read that correctly. New York is way more than Long Island and New York City. New Yorkers killed over 35,000 birds last season. The western part of the state is full of hard-hunting terrain but there are plenty of acres of farmland and dense forests throughout the rest of the state. New York holds a massive turkey herd of over 250,000 birds. For around $80, a non-resident can put a gobbler in the freezer with an option for another tag. If you live in the Northeast, New York would be a hard place to pass up.
Hunters killed over 40,000 birds last year in Wisconsin. The best thing Wisconsin has going for it is that license and tags are cheap and it is home to over 300,000 Easterns. The downside is a stingy bag limit of only one bird per season. It is hard to justify traveling there but if you are a resident, congrats on having a good resource to work with.
While home to over 350,000 Eastern turkeys, Alabama is an excellent location to take a turkey. With swamps, pine forests and farm land, every acre in the state has the potential to hold birds. Last year’s hunters harvested over 50,000 birds. One of the bonuses of Alabama turkey season is that it opens earlier than most other states to the west. Early March is a great time to kick off hunting season. With liberal bag limits and affordable hunting fees, Alabama is set up for hunter success.
As of now, Missouri is the king of turkey harvests with over 57,000 birds killed last year. That is an incredible number from an incredible state that offers viable turkey habitat in virtually every square mile within its borders. 600,000 Easterns make Missouri a go-to state for high hunter success.
No other state offers the chance to harvest three subspecies of turkeys in one season. You can accomplish the Washington Turkey Slam by killing an Eastern, Merriam’s and Rio Grande during one season. This is an incredible opportunity that every hunter should consider. There are plenty of birds and tons of public hunting land as well.