Ohio Spring Turkey Hunters Top Last Season's Total
The Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) shared some great news about this past spring turkey season:
Ohio hunters checked a total of 21,015 wild turkeys during the combined 2017 spring wild turkey south zone hunting season; northeast zone hunting season; and the youth wild turkey hunting season, April 22-May 28, according to the ODNR. In 2016, hunters checked a total of 17,793 wild turkeys.
Hunters checked 19,095 birds during the 2017 wild turkey south zone and northeast zone hunting seasons compared to 16,229 birds in 2016. Youth hunters checked 1,920 birds during the 2017 youth season compared to 1,564 in 2016.
Ohio's 2017 spring wild turkey season was open from Monday, April 24, to Sunday, May 21, in the south zone and from Monday, May 1, to Sunday, May 28, in the northeast zone. The youth season was April 22-23. Hunters can view the 2017 spring turkey season zone map and harvest regulations here.
Wild turkeys were extirpated in Ohio by 1904 and were reintroduced in the 1950s by the ODNR 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.
Editor's Note: A list of all wild turkeys checked during the 2017 combined spring turkey hunting seasons is shown below. The first number following the county's name shows the harvest numbers for 2017, and the 2016 numbers are in parentheses. An * designates a northeast zone county, which was open to wild turkey hunting through Sunday, May 28. Harvest numbers below are raw data and are subject to change.
Steve Hickoff is Realtree.com's editorial director and turkey hunting editor. He’s been beaten by more birds than he can remember. Still he kills enough to eat well, and fool with beards, spurs and fans until the next season. Pennsylvania born and raised, Maine is his home base now. A full-time outdoor communicator with a couple university writing degrees, he chases spring gobblers and fall flocks around the country.