Turkey Hunting in Vermont

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  • B
  • 45,000+

    Wild Turkey Population

  • Easterns

    Turkey Subspecies

  • 17,000+ (turkey)

    Number of Licenses Sold Annually

  • $51

    Hunting ($28) and turkey license ($23).

    Cost of Resident License and Permit

  • $140

    Hunting ($102) and turkey license ($38).

    Cost of Non-Resident License and Permit

According to the Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department (VFWD), turkeys were extirpated by the mid-1800s. As with many northern turkey hunting states, trap-and-transfer efforts have established huntable flocks here. 

Restoration began in 1969 and 1970 when the state's wildlife biologists live-trapped 31 New York wild turkeys and released them in Pawlet and Hubbardton.

Vermont now has wild turkeys in most regions of the state.

There is a two-bird limit (both can be taken in one day), and fairly priced licenses. Public land is abundant, and private land access can often be negotiated. 

Recent VFWD data for registered bearded birds show 4,791 turkeys were taken in spring of 2020, while it bumped up to 5,743 last year.

Bad news is poult production is down, owing in part to the raw, wet weather northern New England saw in late spring and early summer last year.

Where to Go

Geographically, the Connecticut River region (Vermont/New Hampshire border); southwestern Vermont (bordering New York); and central Vermont consistently hold the most birds.

Addison, Caledonia, Franklin, Orange, Rutland, and Windsor counties often claim the most registered spring turkeys.

Want a low-pressure hunt with lots of room?

The Green Mountain National Forest, with more than 400,000 acres and the largest tract of contiguous Vermont public land, is open to hunting.

On a personal note, I've turkey hunted Vermont many times, both spring and fall. Hardwood ridges. Rolling, green pastures. What's not to like? 

– Steve Hickoff

Turkey Hunting in Vermont. Image by Steve Hickoff

Go here for more Realtree turkey hunting.