WillowRidgeCalls wrote:The only thing I could think of is that the woods is over run with coon, but there hasn't been any hit on the roads around the farm either? Not sure why they left that area and haven't returned, it's been about 4 years since there was birds there, and none on the farms next to it either?
Dang that's depressing. I made arrangements for trappers to work this woods and the surrounding woods because of the high coon population, I saw herds of the things this year. My thinking was coon raid nests which would hurt recruitment. There were a lot hens without poults in the area this fall.
Coyotes are in the area but their numbers have been pushed way down. A neighboring farm got a picture of a cougar on their trail cam but it has been moved out. Turkeys live out West with cougars and this was only one and only for a short time.
These turkeys had come in and setup in their traditional wintering areas as they usually do. In the spring they disperse with the resident turkeys sticking around. I have never seen flocks of turkeys in formation flying off. Perhaps, I happen to be in the right the place at the right time to see something that is more common than we think? There are times I can go most anywhere turkeys usually hang out and find no evidence of them ever having been there, later in week or 2 that area is again full of birds.
Looking at the area on a macro basis; the WDNR has ordered and completed large hardwood clear cuts out and around the county including on WMAs. I have worried they are destroying prime turkey habitat in the name deer and grouse. Those large old growth oaks are critical to supporting high turkey populations. Some of my best turkey hunting areas have been destroyed and will not grow back in my lifetime. Reminds me of the turkey habitat destruction in the Ozarks that Ray Eye wrote about.
Farmers have been bulldozing oak woodlots in order to gain a few more corn acres too.