Turkey Plan Revision Survey Results

charlie elk
 
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Joined: August 7th, 2009, 4:50 pm
Location: Wisconsin

Re: Turkey Plan Revision Survey Results

Postby charlie elk » August 13th, 2012, 1:24 pm

Very good questions Kygobbler,
Depending on the source WI turkey population is estimated at 300-350,000 birds which clearly ranks WI in the top 3 turkey states.
A wide open 6 weeks season with 4 gobbler limit is biologically safe but socially unacceptable to the active turkey hunters. For good reason, we have a good thing going once you get past the contest for a tag in week 1 or 2 there is somewhere in the state with thousands of tags leftover for OTC sale. The most dedicated, addicted turkey hunter can then kill as many birds as there are tags. A few of us try our darnedest. If a hunter is willing to travel around the state there is unlimited hunting opportunity right up to the last day. Roughly 2% of hunters do this. In those last 3 seasons I rarely encounter another hunter afield.
As ticklishpro points out there are more hunters vying for the tags on the east side of the state than the west. They fear if it was opened up the hunting areas would be overcrowded thus over hunted with the quality of the hunt deteriorated.
Even on the west side of WI the most active hunters here can get a dozen or more tags; that is cool and not easy to give up.
However, there are many turkey hunters who have given up and no longer turkey hunt, many of them have told me they don't like the current complicated licensing scheme. WI turkey hunter numbers have been in a sharp decline some current hunters are concerned but according to the surveys they are greatly out numbered. These surveys are only done using current hunters.

The current license scheme was setup during the turkey reintroduction period. At that time you were lucky to draw a tag in order to hunt in that year. There were many years a hunter would have to sit on the sidelines waiting for his turn at a tag. Little has changed in the system since then except there are many more turkeys and permits today, fewer hunters than a decade ago. These remaining hunters get to buy all those extra tags.
So a debate is raging about any changes that may or may not take place.
In the meantime the number of turkey hunters has decreased by about 50% from the high point. Is this good for the long term health of turkey hunting? Probably not.
Is it good for those hunters still active each spring? Yes; what hunter would not want a square mile full of turkeys and no other hunters?
Hence the debate.
later,
charlie
If you agree with me call it fact; if you disagree - call it my opinion.
After all - we are talking turkey.

charlie elk
 
Posts: 1090
Joined: August 7th, 2009, 4:50 pm
Location: Wisconsin

Re: Turkey Plan Revision Survey Results

Postby charlie elk » August 13th, 2012, 1:38 pm

fallhunt wrote:When is WI fall season? Are bow and gun seasons different? What is the bag limit in fall? Are tags sold OTC? I looked on the WI web site but it kept running me around with a draw.

Just made that last post and ours popped in.
I love the fall hunt here. WI has a 3 1/2 long season Sept 15 to Dec 31, closed for the 9 day gun deer hunt. You get a variety of conditions from warm spring like days in early fall to all the splendor of fall colors, brown and open woods leading to an end in possibly deep snow, requiring snowshoes to hunt.
First tags are still drawn but there are not enough hunters who enter so there are thousands leftover for OTC purchase at the rate of one per day until sold out. In units 1,3, & 4 they do not usually sellout. There are thousands remaining come Dec 31st.
WI fields only about 26,000 fall turkey hunters statewide and most of those are archery deer hunters who buy a turkey license just in case one walks by while they are on stand. In a normal year about 1/3 to 1/2 of all fall turkeys are killed incidentally to archery deer hunting.
The limit is the number of tags you have in your pocket and when those are gone you can buy more at the rate of one per day to refill your pocket. :D
Turkey dogs are now legal statewide. You can see my Turkey Dog Vic over on the fall hunt section. :D
During the fall season you can hunt with gun, bow or Xbow.
later,
charlie
If you agree with me call it fact; if you disagree - call it my opinion.
After all - we are talking turkey.

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Gopherlongbeards
 
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Location: Minneapolis, MN

Re: Turkey Plan Revision Survey Results

Postby Gopherlongbeards » August 13th, 2012, 2:31 pm

I would agree with Charlie that the current zone and time period structure is a social regulation to manage hunter effort. I think it dose a pretty good job. In my opinion, without a zone or time period structure those couple weeks of season, especially in areas near urban centers (primarily zone 2) would see a significant decrease in the quality of the hunting experience due to overcrowding of available public areas. Additionally, the time period structure makes it much easier to obtain permission on private land. Currently, many landowners let several groups of hunters use their properties during different time periods. If there were no time period structure and just a single set length season, competition for access to private land would likely increase.

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ticklishtompro
 
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Joined: April 19th, 2012, 9:36 pm
Location: Sheboygan,Wisconsin

Re: Turkey Plan Revision Survey Results

Postby ticklishtompro » August 13th, 2012, 9:26 pm

Gopher and Charlie, you both nailed it on the head. They say it is a safety issue to have that many hunters out all at once. I think it would only be the first week or 2 and then it would die out, and then just have the diehards out there, except for maybe on the weekends. I hunt primarily private lands and would not have any competition on a few properties. But others I hunt are hunted pretty much every season but only one person is given permission for each season. These properties would be lost, or hunted more sparingly. One of the properties I hunt has more birds on it than any other I hunt, but the landowner only gives permission to one hunter per week, first come first served, luckily I talk to him early and pretty much get permission for any time I have a tag, but that would change.(Don't ask Mr. Lovett about that property, as when I took him there the birds had lock-beak!!)

That is the only reason I would like to see the seperate time periods remain, but if they would change it, we would adjust with it. I would still be able to have a few properties to myself, and some public honey holes where I have never ran into another hunter at, and we kill a lot of birds there!
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