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Turkey Population

Bowhunter57

Senior Member
3,558
124
Allen County
Anyone else feel like their hunting time would be better spent wondering the woodlots killing predators? 🤔

The preservation of this year's hatch, next year's birds and not funding the ODNR's poor predator management decisions with my turkey tag are a few of my thoughts.
I know an individual in Jackson County that owns 600 acres and has trail cameras on it. He hasn't seen any turkeys since seeing bobcats, for the last 4 years. :mad: There's nothing stopping a bobcat from climbing a tree and killing roosting turkeys, killing nesting hens and poults.
I've put in my recommendations to the ODNR for a No Closed Season on coons (no bag limit), for 3 years. If after 3 years an increase in the turkey population is shown, continue the No Closed Season, until turkey populations stabilize.

Your thoughts? :confused:
 

Jackalope

Dignitary Member
Staff member
36,278
235
Anyone else feel like their hunting time would be better spent wondering the woodlots killing predators? 🤔

The preservation of this year's hatch, next year's birds and not funding the ODNR's poor predator management decisions with my turkey tag are a few of my thoughts.
I know an individual in Jackson County that owns 600 acres and has trail cameras on it. He hasn't seen any turkeys since seeing bobcats, for the last 4 years. :mad: There's nothing stopping a bobcat from climbing a tree and killing roosting turkeys, killing nesting hens and poults.
I've put in my recommendations to the ODNR for a No Closed Season on coons (no bag limit), for 3 years. If after 3 years an increase in the turkey population is shown, continue the No Closed Season, until turkey populations stabilize.

Your thoughts? :confused:

I agree. Shoot every predator you see to include feral cats. Not sure a no closed season would help on coons. Nobody really targets them now when theyre in season.
 
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twireman

Senior Member
2,925
124
Kingston, OH
I have pretty much decided I will never kill another turkey. Just not enough to go around on the private properties I hunt… the difference in population over the last five years is staggering… if I can get my son on a bird in the next 3 years it will be a success… hell I would be in favor of suspending the season for a year if it would help. The damn turkeys don’t stand a chance in todays world….
 
I really hate to here that Curran
I have been hunting turkey in Ohio since it was a lottery and you made sure your application was there in time if you wanted the first 2 weeks. But it seems like in my area there are less birds now than then.
even if they open the season on coons who is going to hunt them. Only a few dedicated Coon hunter’s left. And they don’t shoot the coons out anymore.
Why don’t they close the fall season or make it bearded turkey only? There is no reason to shoot a hen with the falling population.
There is an open season on coyotes but the population just continues to grow.
Bobcats have not moved into my area yet but it won’t be long.
 
202
25
Ohio
The one spot I hunt is where I grew up next to a church camp , it's basically a wildlife refuge surrounded by neighboring farms. The amount of turkeys there growing up there was exciting. I used to go an hour before school and kill them . I can't remember how many times I'd have them gobbling their heads off coming in and id have to run down the lane when I seen the bus coming and toss the gun against the fence and head to school in my camo . I can't remember ever going and not hearing or seeing birds. I haven't heard a single gobble there in 5 years . There's the lone hen or two you see every year and maybe one strutter out in the neighboring field a season that's it. My other spot I see enough turkeys but can't stand the amount of trespassers every year so basically gave that up. I have one spot I hit 2 or 3 times a season and usually get a bird every year but it's the next county over and he let in several people this year so I'm back to hunting the original property I grew up at . I don't expect to kill one this year itll be a bonus if I do, mainly going for fun and to shoot any preds that come strolling through.
 

LonewolfNopack

Junior Member
1,065
91
The woods
I use to go on public land in Highland county and hear 10+ birds every time. There was one other turkey hunter on the parcel i hunted, and he only was there because he worked for DOW and knew about the birds. I would limit every year in 2 or 3 days. That was back before lots of folks were turkey hunting my area. Now there are a fraction of the birds, and for every bird there are 3 hunters calling at it. I know this may not be popular opinion, but we did some of this to ourselves. I havent killed 2 birds nor tried to in 5 or 6 years. Yes, predators are an issue, so is habitat loss. Glad the limit is finally only 1, but I think the DOW dragged their feet to long on that one. Allowing killing of hens while reducing male turkey harvest is also absolutely ridiculous and completely political. As hunters we need to do a much better job at self regulating. We should all know by now we can't depend on the govt to do it for us. This whole turkey situation reminds me entirely too much of the crash of the deer population in 2012 era. Im almost positive my 2 year old son will never get the same incredible hunting opportunities that I had growing up, and that makes me very sad. We have ourselves to blame for some of this, both in our hunting habits as well as not being outspoken with DNR.
 
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giles

Village idiot and local whore
Supporting Member
37,416
197
In a bar
I use to go on public land in Highland county and hear 10+ birds every time. There was one other turkey hunter on the parcel i hunted, and he only was there because he worked for DOW and knew about the birds. I would limit every year in 2 or 3 days. That was back before lots of folks were turkey hunting my area. Now there are a fraction of the birds, and for every bird there are 3 hunters calling at it. I know this may not be popular opinion, but we did some of this to ourselves. I havent killed 2 birds nor tried to in 5 or 6 years. Yes, predators are an issue, so is habitat loss. Glad the limit is finally only 1, but I think the DOW dragged their feet to long on that one. Allowing killing of hens while reducing male turkey harvest is also absolutely ridiculous and completely political. As hunters we need to do a much better job at self regulating. We should all know by now we can't depend on the govt to do it for us. This whole turkey situation reminds me entirely too much of the crash of the deer population in 2012 era. Im almost positive my 2 year old son will never get the same incredible hunting opportunities that I had growing up, and that makes me very sad. We have ourselves to blame for some of this, both in our hunting habits as well as not being outspoken with DNR.
Do NOT get into this conversation with Ethan...
 
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Jackalope

Dignitary Member
Staff member
36,278
235
I use to go on public land in Highland county and hear 10+ birds every time. There was one other turkey hunter on the parcel i hunted, and he only was there because he worked for DOW and knew about the birds. I would limit every year in 2 or 3 days. That was back before lots of folks were turkey hunting my area. Now there are a fraction of the birds, and for every bird there are 3 hunters calling at it. I know this may not be popular opinion, but we did some of this to ourselves. I havent killed 2 birds nor tried to in 5 or 6 years. Yes, predators are an issue, so is habitat loss. Glad the limit is finally only 1, but I think the DOW dragged their feet to long on that one. Allowing killing of hens while reducing male turkey harvest is also absolutely ridiculous and completely political. As hunters we need to do a much better job at self regulating. We should all know by now we can't depend on the govt to do it for us. This whole turkey situation reminds me entirely too much of the crash of the deer population in 2012 era. Im almost positive my 2 year old son will never get the same incredible hunting opportunities that I had growing up, and that makes me very sad. We have ourselves to blame for some of this, both in our hunting habits as well as not being outspoken with DNR.

I don't disagree but since man invented the spear hunters haven't been capable of self-regulating as a group to any meaningful level. We pay a DNR to manage wildlife populations so that we as hunters don't have a repeat of the 1800s. We cannot expect hunters to manage statewide populations of animals with any meaningful results. If hunters have overharvested an animal the blame is 100% with the DNR whose responsibility it is to prevent that.
 

LonewolfNopack

Junior Member
1,065
91
The woods
I don't disagree but since man invented the spear hunters haven't been capable of self-regulating as a group to any meaningful level. We pay a DNR to manage wildlife populations so that we as hunters don't have a repeat of the 1800s. We cannot expect hunters to manage statewide populations of animals with any meaningful results. If hunters have overharvested an animal the blame is 100% with the DNR whose responsibility it is to prevent that.
Thats why I mentioned we must do better, because you are right, we have mostly failed. I absolutely blame DOW for most of our issues and they should be doing better too. But they have proven that they usually lack that capability. Tonk is still winning awards for his "management". In their hazy eyes they have created a mecca for us dumb hunters and we should be happy about it. Compared to 1960s yes, kudos to them, but its now 2022 and they are still riding that horse. DOW will never get it exactly right or will behind schedule if they do. Its politics. We have to hold ourselves and neighbors accountable. Easier said then done I know, especially when your neighbor hunters are assholes.
 
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