Now that the wild turkey has been restored to Tennessee, our goal is to ensure that a vigorous, self-sustaining population is maintained in all suitable habitats of the state.
Turkeys will be managed to best meet the needs and desires of the people of Tennessee. Therefore, it is necessary to develop a long-range plan for managing Tennessee’s wild turkey resource; this plan will direct wild turkey management for the anticipated future.
Certain parts of the state have experienced tremendous turkey population growth. The popularity of the turkey as a game species versus concern about turkey depredation in some areas of the state have brought about new challenges concerning turkey management. Large numbers of turkeys in certain parts of the state have brought about conflicts and in some instances economic losses. The strategies in TWRA's current management plan seek to resolve these issues while optimizing the worth of the wild turkey.
In recent years, as a result of the wild turkey restoration efforts, Tennessee has a wider distribution of huntable flocks which can absorb declines in some local populations without a significant drop in the total harvest. Since weather conditions vary greatly across the state some flocks exist in areas that will be unaffected by the same storms which could be detrimental to poult survival in other localized flocks.
Good production in these areas provides an alternate place for hunters to hunt when local populations are low.
The use of any type of food to feed or attract wild turkeys on WMAs. Shooting or stalking turkeys from a boat in Shelby, Dyer, Tipton, Lauderdale, Haywood or Obion counties prohibited. Calling or attempting to call wild turkeys using any call to mimic the sounds made by a wild turkey is prohibited from March 1st to the opening day of the spring turkey hunts on all WMAs.
A licensed turkey hunter, who has filled his/her bag limit or does not possess a valid permit for a quota hunt, may accompany another turkey hunter (except on Oak Ridge WMA) and assist him/her in calling, but may not have a gun or bow in his possession.
The areas available for the hunts are listed on the instruction sheets. Hunters have up to 12 choices, but will be drawn for only one. Applicants may not use the same hunt code more than once. There are a total of 17 hunts listed. No person may apply more than once.
A permit fee will not be charged to Annual Sportsman (Type 004), Lifetime Sportsman (Types 402-405) license holders or Senior Citizen Hunters (Type 166) with an Annual Senior Citizen Permit (Type 167). TWRA will pay the agent fee for these transactions. For all other license holders, the cost is $10 per permit, plus the agent fee. When applying at a license agent, hunters must remain at the location while the application is processed. Hunters will receive a receipt with a confirmation number when the application is complete.
March 29 - May 11, 2014
All Tennessee counties are open to wild turkey hunting including WMAs and refuges unless specifically listed.
One (1) bearded turkey per day, not to exceed four (4) per season. Turkeys taken on all quota hunts and specially designated WMAs are bonus turkeys.
Thirty (30) minutes before legal sunrise to sunset.
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The use of any type of food to feed or attract wild turkeys on WMAs is prohibited. Calling or attempting to call wild turkeys using any means to mimic the sounds made by turkeys is prohibited on all WMAs from March 1 until the opening day of the spring turkey hunts on the WMA.
March 22-23, 2014 (ages 6 through 16). One (1) bearded turkey which counts toward statewide bag unless taken on a WMA where turkeys are designated as bonus birds. Each youth must be accompanied by a nonhunting adult, 21 years of age or older, who must remain in a position to take immediate control of the hunting device, who is not required to have a license.