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Old 04-18-2002, 04:07 PM
Marshall Stanton's Avatar
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Idaho is currently enjoying a virtual explosion of our wild turkey populations in much of the state.  In the Idaho Panhandle we have the opportunity now to harvest two Toms in the spring, and an either sex hunt in the fall which coincides with our Elk and Deer seasons.  The fall hunt allows one bird per season.

This is in sharp contrast to only five years ago when turkey hunting in the Panhandle was limited to lottery drawing only, then with a two week season and only one spring gobbler allowed.

It's a real credit to sharp game management practices, since we didn't have any turkeys in the Panhandle of Idaho until 1981.  Extensive logging opening up choice habitat both for turkeys and other large game has contributed to this success story.  The habitat is excellent, and the birds are largely underhunted, except for perhaps the opening two days of season.  

I still haven't been in the woods up here turkey hunting and found anyone else doing the same thing.  Usually the only other folks wandering around the turkey woods are spring bear hunters, loggers or timber cruisers.

All-in-all it makes a nice springtime diversion after a long winter.  I know that we don't have the liberal bag limits of the southeast, but our birds are a success story all unto themselves!

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Old 04-18-2002, 04:34 PM
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I did not know you guys had turkeys that far north. *Wow. *I've hunted those in the southeastern states with friends, and it sure is a blast (no pun intended). *On another note, and I don't want to take the thread into a place it doesn't need to go, but I'm glad you put that in there about logging. *I work with a lot of the timber industry folks and forest management is a critical component of wildlife management. *The rules and regulations with the Forest Practices Act of today are much different than they were 50 years ago and logging is essential for a healthy forest and wildlife.
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Old 04-18-2002, 05:24 PM
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Lots of turkeys here in eastern WA, too
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Old 04-18-2002, 07:00 PM
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Guess there's lots of discussion on what's appropriate for turkeys and what's not. *I always figured they were a bird and could be hunted as such. *I know there's a stigma of sitting under a tree and calling one up, but I've never been much of a sitter or stander before. *I killed a couple of the birds by stalking through the lowland pines and oaks right after daybreak when they come off roost. *It is a lot of fun. *If you find a quite overflow stream channel that doesn't have much water in it and a lot of vegetation on the edges, you can slip up on anything. *Not classic turkey hunting I suppose, but it sure is fun. *I've taken turkeys with both shotgun and bow this way. *If they get to wandering away from your planned intercept, I've used a mouth call to get them to hang around long enough so as to get a shot. *I haven't hunted any areas where you can take one with a rifle, least that I'm aware of. *But the bow and shotgun are so much fun, I doubt I would if I could.
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Old 04-19-2002, 09:06 AM
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In Idaho's Rule book for turkey hunting they tell you not to stalk them, never really understood why. Anyway, the first critter I shot in Idaho was a turkey, I got one of the early controlled hunt permits Marshall was talking about. In fact, I've only fired my shotgun twice since moving to Idaho - once to pattern the turkey loads I bought and once  to kill the turkey.
   By the way, the turkeys here don't seem to be too hunt savvy. You can pull up alongside a flock by the road, lean out and go "gobble gobble" like a kid trying to imitate a turkey and they will gobble right back at you. I never hunted Eastern turkeys or any population that had been hunted heavily but these turkeys seemed, well, DUMB. I still have 8 of the 10 shells in the box I bought for that first turkey season. I've just never had the urge to do it again....              IDShooter

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