Numbers down?

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Numbers down?

Unread postby dan » Wed May 13, 2020 3:24 am

Im wondering if others are noticing a lack of turkeys? I have yet to see a single Jake all season, and its down right hard to find birds to go after? 2 days ago I drove across wisconsin a 2.5 hour trip and watched for turkeys. Saw 1....


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Re: Numbers down?

Unread postby Huntress13 » Wed May 13, 2020 3:52 am

It has been cold here. Neighbor shot a small one a couple weeks ago. Normally this time of year we hear them while we are sitting on the porch with our coffee in the morning, but it has been too cold to sit outside!
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Country
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Re: Numbers down?

Unread postby Country » Wed May 13, 2020 3:58 am

I heard a good amount of gobbling the first two days of the season. Laid eyes on 6 toms, the only birds I physically saw. Shot 1. My first gobbler.
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Re: Numbers down?

Unread postby Wannabelikedan » Wed May 13, 2020 4:05 am

The numbers are way down here. I’m surprised to hear they’re down in several other regions of the country. We’ve had super wet springs for the last five years. That equates to nests lost, low poult survival and ultimately lack of recruitment. I’m amazed regulations haven’t changed at all during this time.
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Re: Numbers down?

Unread postby dan » Wed May 13, 2020 4:30 am

Country wrote:I heard a good amount of gobbling the first two days of the season. Laid eyes on 6 toms, the only birds I physically saw. Shot 1. My first gobbler.

Congrats...
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Re: Numbers down?

Unread postby dan » Wed May 13, 2020 4:31 am

Wannabelikedan wrote:The numbers are way down here. I’m surprised to hear they’re down in several other regions of the country. We’ve had super wet springs for the last five years. That equates to nests lost, low poult survival and ultimately lack of recruitment. I’m amazed regulations haven’t changed at all during this time.

Yea, we had flooding during nesting here last year too... That was my thought as well.
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Re: Numbers down?

Unread postby Country » Wed May 13, 2020 4:37 am

dan wrote:
Country wrote:I heard a good amount of gobbling the first two days of the season. Laid eyes on 6 toms, the only birds I physically saw. Shot 1. My first gobbler.

Congrats...


Thanks buddy
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Re: Numbers down?

Unread postby Hawthorne » Wed May 13, 2020 4:42 am

Numbers are good here. They are showing in areas that have never had them. Almost a nuisance I hear from some landowners
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Re: Numbers down?

Unread postby strutnrut716 » Wed May 13, 2020 5:10 am

Very good numbers for me. Having one of my best seasons so far. My son (and I) shot a nice gobbler last Friday and many more in the area. Almost shot one in Zone 7 yesterday (but that is always tough up there with the snow/cold/predators/etc). Tomorrow I start down here again (SE Wis Zone 2) and have numerous gobblers in mind. I HAVE noticed , now that you mentioned, that I haven't seen a jake yet. But it always seems that I see few jakes on any given year.

I WILL mention that this is THE MOST hunting pressure I have ever seen. Most parking spots are full on the weekends and mostly weekdays too. If you notice, all leftover tags are gone in zone 2. Usually there are some leftover bonus tags still at this time each year. Maybe its pandemic related...hard to say. (Guys hunting more to keep social distancing...bla bla bla :D )

I have 2 tags left to fill and I'm going with/helping a fellow beast member who also has a tag. I'm looking forward to it 8-) 8-) 8-). All of the above is related to the amount of preseason scouting I've done . I'm gobbler chasing like a BEAST this year !!
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Re: Numbers down?

Unread postby greenhorndave » Wed May 13, 2020 5:31 am

I see probably 30 birds every single day in fields near my house. Now, they are places people can't hunt, but there are a lot there. Saw 3 big gobblers literally 3 minutes ago.

But other than that, I haven't seen big flocks elsewhere, at least not near or on public.

Jakes... I think the big flocks that I see regularly has several jakes, but I haven't looked super closely or counted them.

Pressure might be part of it.
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Re: Numbers down?

Unread postby Jerry40 » Wed May 13, 2020 6:09 am

I thought the numbers were down in the thumb area of Michigan also. It was hard to find birds to go after on public ground. I didn't see hardly any Turkeys while I was driving from spot to spot either. Actually most of the birds I saw were either on public or private adjacent to public.
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Re: Numbers down?

Unread postby VaBowKill5 » Wed May 13, 2020 10:31 am

I can’t speak for Wisconsin but temps were abnormally warm here in Va from the end of February and thru March and I think the turkeys started early and are pretty much done as far as breeding and gobbling goes. I talked to a guy yesterday that said he saw a hen that had little ones already which is way early. Has seemed pretty crappy here too and I can’t help but think this has a lot to do with it.
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Re: Numbers down?

Unread postby cspot » Wed May 13, 2020 11:52 am

dan wrote:
Wannabelikedan wrote:The numbers are way down here. I’m surprised to hear they’re down in several other regions of the country. We’ve had super wet springs for the last five years. That equates to nests lost, low poult survival and ultimately lack of recruitment. I’m amazed regulations haven’t changed at all during this time.

Yea, we had flooding during nesting here last year too... That was my thought as well.


I think wet cold weather for several years has been partly to blame in alot of the country for a lower population. I know in PA they were looking into see if West Nile Virus was having any effect on turkeys like they think is happening with grouse.. I think the preliminary information they are getting is showing that it does not seem to have an effect in turkeys even though it does seem to be affecting grouse populations.

We still have a good population of turkeys where I live in PA, but this has been a very strange year. They aren't roosting where they typically do and they aren't hanging out where they typically do. There has been very little gobbling here as well even on the roost. Of course our season is only in it's second week here, so things may improve.
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Re: Numbers down?

Unread postby muskieman » Wed May 13, 2020 12:45 pm

Hunted 2 weekends ago SE MN. I had a opportunity at a nice tom but didnt shoot as I thought it was 55 to 60 yards. Turned out to be 48. With that said saw 4 Jake's and 2 Tom's. Normally hear the turkeys every direction on the roost on the morning heard 2 birds all 3 morning. Numbers way down by bus. The DNR is loving seeling tags. The harvest has been to hard on the birds last few years. 6 weeks of chasing the smart ones are bound to screw up once....
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Re: Numbers down?

Unread postby muddy » Wed May 13, 2020 1:06 pm

Numbers are down in many places down here in Iowaas well. Related to high bobcat population and the DNR is asking for turkey legs to test for some disease they think is knocking them out as well.
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