|Illinois Department of Natural Resources|
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Hunters Bag 16,565 Birds During 2010 Illinois Spring Wild Turkey Season
Harvest up over 2009 totals
SPRINGFIELD, ILL. – Hunters in Illinois bagged a preliminary statewide total of 16,565 wild turkeys during the 2010 Spring Turkey Season.
The 2010 total compares with the statewide turkey harvest of 15,490 in 2009. Hunters took a state-record 16,605 turkeys during the spring season in 2006.
Hunters this spring took a preliminary total of 6,916 wild turkeys during all seasons in the South Zone, an increase from the harvest of 6,353 last year in the south. The North Zone total of 9,649 wild turkeys compares with last year’s total of 9,137 in the north. Harvests during the 2006 record year were 6,530 in the south and 10,075 in the north. All results include harvest during the Youth Turkey Seasons.
“Weather was exceptionally cooperative during the first several seasons, particularly in the South Zone,” said Paul Shelton, Illinois Department of Natural Resources Forest Wildlife Program Manager. “Hunters were on record pace until the very last season in the North Zone, when several days of morning thunderstorms slowed things down a bit. In spite of poor reproduction during the past several years, Illinois’ turkey population has remained strong. Weather during the next several weeks will be an important factor affecting nesting success; perhaps this will be the year that puts us over the top.”
The top five counties for turkey harvest in the South Zone this spring were: Pope (397), Jefferson (396), Union (356), Marion (353), and Randolph (351).
The top five counties for spring turkey harvest in the North Zone this year were: JoDaviess (628), Pike (527), Fulton (455), Adams (406), and Schuyler (348).
The 2010 spring turkey seasons were conducted April 5-May 6 in the South Zone and April 12-May 13 in the North Zone, with the youth seasons on Mar. 27-28 in the South Zone and April 3-4 in the North Zone.
The table below includes the preliminary 2010 county-by-county spring turkey harvest results and comparable totals for 2009.