Massachusetts Turkey Hatch Poor This Year
Turkey brood survey reports were tabulated in early October by Jim Cardoza, recently retired MassWildlife Turkey Project Leader. Brood surveys are one way biologists assess the number of young that are recruited (added) into the population.
"Calculations show that this year's hatch was poor," said Cardoza. "This is not entirely unexpected given the prolonged rains in late May through early July. The hen to poult ratio was the lowest on record, with production picking up in August due to re-nesting by some hens. Overall, few young birds were added to the population this year." Cardoza noted that 400 reports were sent in, with the vast majority reported by Bay State citizens. "The response from the public has been excellent," said Cardoza. "Participation from many people reporting brood sightings results in better information for the agency." For more information on wild turkeys, check the Division's website, http://www.mass.gov/dfwele/dfw/wildlife/facts/birds/turkey/turkey_home.htm.