EDITOR'S NOTE This news release has been updated to include the following informaiton: This year, spring turkey applicants will need to provide their preferred zone and time period at time of application. If applying as a group, applicants will need to provide the group leader's customer ID number at time of application as well.
MADISON - Turkey hunters can probably look forward to a slight increase in permit levels for the 2013 Wisconsin spring turkey season, although final permit levels will not be set until after the close of the fall turkey season, according to state wildlife officials.
Wild turkey hunters have until close of business on Dec. 10 to apply for available permits for the 2013 Wisconsin spring turkey hunting season.
The 2013 spring turkey season officially begins with the April 6-7 Spring Youth Turkey Hunt. The regular turkey season begins on the following Wednesday, April 10 and consists of six 7-day time periods, ending on May 21. The drawing for permits will take place in late January or early February. Successful permit applicants can expect to receive a postcard by mid-February. All applicants may also check their drawing status online through the DNR Online Licensing Center starting in mid-February.
This year, spring turkey applicants will need to provide their preferred zone and time period at time of application. If applying as a group, applicants will need to provide the group leader's customer ID number at time of application as well.
Permit winners can purchase their spring turkey license when the 2013 license year begins on March 6. Permits are $15 for Wisconsin residents and $60 for non-residents plus a 2013 Wild Turkey Stamp ($5.25). First time buyers may qualify for reduced license costs. Conservation patrons and senior citizen recreation card holders do not need to purchase a turkey license or stamp when they go to pick up their permit.
Permits remaining after the initial drawing for the 2013 spring turkey season will be available for purchase in late March, at a date to be specified later.
In conjunction with the Mentored Hunting Program, the April 6-7 Spring Youth Turkey Hunt is open to youth 10-15 years of age, both residents and non-residents, with or without a Hunter Education Certificate of Accomplishment. Search for Mentored Hunting Program on the DNR website for special rules and regulations for those participating.
A spring turkey license, stamp, and valid permit/carcass tag are required for the youth hunt and all other existing turkey hunting rules and regulations apply. See the 2012 Wisconsin Small Game Hunting Regulations, which includes the 2013 Spring Turkey Hunting Regulations [PDF], for details. Youth hunters who do not harvest a turkey during the youth hunt may use their unfilled permit during the zone and time period for which the tag was issued. Interested participants in the youth hunt should apply for a spring turkey permit by the Dec. 10 deadline.
Applications for spring turkey permit drawing cost $3 and may be purchased through the Online Licensing Center on the DNR website, at all authorized license agents, at DNR Service Centers (Hours for service centers vary; check the DNR website for service center days and hours of operation; DNR Service Centers are not open on Saturdays), or by calling toll-free 1-877-LICENSE (1-877-945-4236). Applications postmarked after the Dec. 10 deadline, or those which have been filled out incorrectly, will not be considered for the drawings.
As a reminder to those hunters with disabilities who wish to hunt turkey next spring on private lands, there is an opportunity available using a separate application and authorization form.
Applications to conduct a Spring Wild Turkey Hunt for People with Disabilities on private land must be submitted using DNR Forms 2300-271 and 2300-271A. Forms need to be submitted by Dec. 10 to the local DNR Wildlife Biologist or department office for the county within which the hunt will take place. Please note that any hunter applicant who applies for a disabled turkey hunt on private lands using the above forms may NOT also apply for a permit through the regular spring turkey drawing.
More information is available on the wild turkey page of the DNR website. Hunters can also sign up to receive turkey information and other updates through the DNR website at dnr.wi.gov by clicking on the "Subscribe to DNR Updates" button in the footer of each page.
FOR MORE INFORMATION: Scott Walter, upland wildlife ecologist, 608-267-7861 or Krista McGinley, assistant upland wildlife ecologist, 608-261-8458