Wild turkey hunters have until March 13 to apply for limited permits for the spring season in two north central Montana hunting districts.
The turkey hunting districts – 400 and 445 – have a quota of 20 permits each. Applications are available at the Fish, Wildlife and Parks website: http://fwp.mt.gov/.
Those hunting districts are the only two areas in the state open to wild turkey hunting that require a permit. The rest of the state where turkey hunting is legal is classified as a general hunting area.
Turkey hunting district 445 consists of Cascade County. District 400 encompasses all or parts of Teton, Chouteau, Liberty, Toole and Pondera counties.
Wild turkeys are not native to Montana. They were first transplanted in 1954 in the Judith Mountains. The first batch of birds came from Colorado followed by other turkeys from Wyoming.
Within a few years, the birds took hold and further transplants came from Montana stock.
In 2008, FWP put turkeys along the Missouri River near Great Falls. Those birds were Montana birds.
In January 2015 and 2016, through a partnership with the Wild Turkey Federation and the Great Falls chapter of the Safari Club International, FWP obtained wild turkeys from Nebraska. They were released along the Marias, Teton and Missouri Rivers.