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West Virginia extended spring gobbler season open until May 23

SOUTH CHARLESTON, W.VA. — West Virginia’s spring gobbler season is underway and turkey hunters have even more opportunities to bag a bird this year.

“Our spring gobbler season includes eight extra days this year, so hunters have even more chances to have a successful season,” said Mike Peters, wild turkey and migratory game bird project leader for the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources. “For folks like me, who get cabin fever, this is a great time to get out and enjoy beautiful spring weather and our state’s hunting traditions.”

The regular spring gobbler season is open through May 23. All hunters 15 and older must purchase a West Virginia hunting license and follow the state’s turkey hunting regulations, bag limits and game check requirements. Hunters can check game and purchase their license online at wvhunt.com.

“The eastern wild turkey is a magnificent bird and being able to pursue one is a really special experience,” Peters said.

Peters said wild turkeys were almost wiped out in West Virginia until the WVDNR started a trap and transfer program in the 1950s. Over the last 70 years, that program has helped restore West Virginia’s wild turkey population. Today, every county in the state has wild turkeys.

During the spring gobbler season, hunters should also remember that it is illegal to:
•Have an uncased firearm, bow or crossbow in their possession in the woods after 1 p.m.
•Hunt with dogs
•Use electronic calls
•Hunt with the use of bait
•Take more than one bearded turkey per day

Spring Gobbler Survey
Each year, the WVDNR conducts a spring gobbler survey. Hunters who want to participate can download the survey at wvdnr.gov/hunting/hunting.shtm or contact the WVDNR’s Elkins office by calling 304-637-0245.