Turkey Blog with Steve Hickoff

Realtree turkey hunting editor Steve Hickoff has chased gobblers all over the United States and Mexico. He was born and raised in northcentral Pennsylvania, and now makes his home in Maine. Hickoff was named the NWTF Tom Kelly Communicator of the Year for 2019, a prestigious award reflecting his longtime work promoting hunting and conservation as a turkey hunting writer, editor and book author.

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Win a Texas Turkey Hunt with Tyler Jordan and Phillip Culpepper

Do you want to help with wild turkey conservation and have fun doing it? Sure you do. Turkeys for Tomorrow (TFT), a 501(c)3 non-profit conservation group proudly supported by Realtree, is offering you the chance to win the hunt of a lifetime and support conservation. Enter the raffle to chase...


Southwestern Region Turkey Hunting Forecast

As changes go for the 2022 turkey seasons in these states, Texas has fewer tweaks — though specifics are important for noted locations — and Oklahoma has the most drastic, aimed at conservation measures to stabilize the trend of declining populations. New Mexico and Arizona are different in that the...


Changes to Southern Spring Turkey Seasons You Might Not Know About

By many estimates, wild turkey populations have declined in some regions, notably the Southeast and particularly the Deep South. Adjusting season dates and bag limits and even coordinating hunter participation to regulate pressure on birds are some approaches wildlife officials use to manage outdoor resources. Other factors such as turkey...


How to Get an Osceola Longbeard by the Feet

I love the sound of a distant gobble on the roost behind a towering panel of Spanish moss in the breaking dawn. My buddy Scott Basehore had scouted this Florida swamp gobbler and the two hens it ran with on consecutive preseason mornings. “There’s a 15-foot gator back there and...


Hell-Raising Turkeys Are Taking Over Staten Island

Don’t tell folks in Staten Island, New York, or those calling the neighborhood of Brookline, Massachusetts, home (the municipality list for such city birds is longish) that wild turkeys are facing declines in some parts of the country. Their asphalt streets are full of the birds. Mail-delivery-chasing gobblers. Window-pecking renegades,...


Stay Safe Out There This Turkey Season

Fortunately, I didn’t pay the price of mistaken identity. But heck, in all honesty, it took me a minute to puzzle out the situation. Coyote, I first thought. The distant movement was low to the ground, stalking the weeds like a predator. Then I had the sudden realization it was...


How to Get a Wild Turkey for Your Thanksgiving Dinner

Farm-raised turkeys from your local meat market shared with family and friends are a tradition for some, sure. Not everyone hunts wild turkeys with the same passion we do. Our birds carry the memories of the hunt. That’s a powerful thing for most of us. And it gives us a...


Newsmaker: Turkeys for Tomorrow Group Aims to Help Declining Southeast Populations

Are you seeing fewer wild turkeys these days? Sure enough, flock populations have declined in some states, notably the Southeast. Adjusting season dates, bag limits, and even coordinating hunter participation to regulate pressure on birds are some approaches wildlife officials use to manage outdoor resources. Other factors such as turkey...


How to Hunt Fall Turkeys from a Blind

Some of us love to fall turkey hunt by running and gunning birds, scattering flocks, then setting up for the call-back, as gregarious birds regroup and offer better shots at single turkeys. It’s a fair-chase tradition for many. But for other autumn turkey hunters, a leisurely long sit might be...


Mississippi Limits Out-of-State Hunters, Oklahoma Delays Season Dates, and Ohio Mulls Lowering Bag Limit

In some states, wild turkey populations have declined. Turkey diseases, predator influences on poult and nesting hen survival, habitat fragmentation, poaching — and yes, even complacency among members of the nonhunting public — all factor into modern-day conservation decisions. Adjusting season dates, bag limits, and even coordinating hunter participation to...


50 Years of Turkey Hunting (and What I’ve Learned)

My heart jump-starts a bit every time I see a wild turkey. Always has. Way back when I started, I just wanted to hear one. Back in the day, a gobble within earshot was reason enough to call it a good hunt. My Pennsylvania ridge-running involved a boatload of anticipation...


Arkansas Baiting Violations Up, Eastern Turkey Numbers Decline, and Florida Hatch Surveys Begin

As we ease into the offseason, looking forward to fall turkey hunting, here’s a roundup of some newsmaking conservation and management trends regarding America’s favorite gamebird. Arkansas Harvest Numbers Drop — Is Baiting to Blame? Arkansas hunters killed and checked in 7,010 Eastern wild turkeys during the 2021 spring season,...


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