Every single state in the nation, with the exception of Alaska, has wild turkey hunting, making the sport easily-accessible to a vast majority of American hunters.
Some states, however, are better than others. According to Realtree, there are nine states that earn an “A” for turkey hunting. These states are located all over the country, so no matter where you live, you’re within a day’s drive of some world-class turkey hunting. So what are the best states for turkey hunters? Let’s find out...
Alabama: It’s believed that 400,000 to 500,000 turkeys roam the woods and fields of Alabama. Considering that roughly 76% of the state is forested, you can understand why so many Alabama residents love their turkey hunting traditions. Alabama is also friendly to non-resident hunters and has plenty of public hunting grounds.
California: Whether you are a resident or a non-resident, California has lots of turkey hunting opportunities available. With populations of turkey covering 18% of the state and a generous three-bird limit in the spring, success rates for Golden State turkey hunters are very high.
Kansas: This prairie state has two different sub-species of wild turkey available for hunters, the Rios in the western portion and the easterns back (you guessed it) east. With plenty of grassland, river bottoms, woods, and farmland, Kansas turkeys bulk up to 23 pounds on a regular basis.
Kentucky: In 2012, Kentucky hunters harvested more turkeys per square mile than any other state, taking the mark from neighboring Tennessee for the first time. With 1.5 million acres of public land and a generous bag and licensing system, hunters in the Blue Grass State are set for a great turkey season every year.
Nebraska: According to Realtree, there were less than 5,000 turkeys in Nebraska in 1990. There are now roughly 145,000 turkeys in the state, making it one of the best spots for hunting toms. The seasons lasts for many weeks and the bag limits allow for three birds in the spring, giving hunters plenty of turkey opportunities.
New Hampshire: New England isn’t known nationally as a major turkey hunting area, but there are certainly states that have top-notch opportunities, including New Hampshire, the only state in the Northeast to earn an A. Nearly all public lands are available for hunting, and turkey populations have steadily increased since the 1980’s.
Tennessee: The Volunteer State has a unique bag-limit system that is controlled by the counties, so while some counties have no fall turkey season, others let hunters take up to six birds a season. With plenty of birds and abundant bags limit in many counties, Tennessee is a turkey hunter’s heaven.
Washington: The state of Washington holds three subspecies of turkeys and plenty of chances for hunters to pursue them. With a convenient bag limit of three, you could head to Washington and go for the state’s version of the triple crown.
Wisconsin: Both residents and non-residents will find the state of Wisconsin very friendly to hunters. With farm country in the south and the Northwoods up (you guessed it) north, there is a diverse habitat for toms to feed, breed, and grow nice and fat.
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