Extended W.Va. spring gobbler season open until May 23

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Extended W.Va. spring gobbler season open until May 23
A hunter in West Virginia uses a turkey call to attract a spring gobbler. (Photo courtesy W.Va. Dept. of Commerce)

West Virginia's spring gobbler season is underway, and turkey hunters have even more opportunities to bag a bird this year.

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Mike Peters, wild turkey and migratory game bird project leader for the division, says the eight extra days are sure to be of benefit to hunters.

"Our spring gobbler season includes eight extra days this year, so hunters have even more chances to have a successful season," Peters said.

"For folks like me, who get cabin fever, this is a great time to get out and enjoy beautiful spring weather and our state's hunting traditions."

The regular spring gobbler season is open through May 23.

All hunters 15 and older must purchase a West Virginia hunting license and follow the state's turkey hunting regulations, bag limits and game check requirements. Hunters can check game and purchase their license online at wvhunt.com.

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"The eastern wild turkey is a magnificent bird and being able to pursue one is a really special experience," Peters said.

Peters said wild turkeys were almost wiped out in West Virginia until the state launched a trap-and-transfer program in the 1950s. The program has helped restore West Virginia's wild turkey population, and today every county in the state is inhabited by wild turkeys.

During the spring gobbler season, hunters should also remember that it is illegal to hunt with dogs or bait or use electronic calls.

Hunters also cannot take more than one bearded turkey per day or have an uncased firearm, bow, or crossbow in their possession in the woods after 1 p.m.


Spring Gobbler Survey

Each year, the division conducts a spring gobbler survey. Hunters who want to participate can download the survey at wvdnr.gov/hunting/hunting.shtm or contact the division's Elkins office by calling 304-637-0245.

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