West Virginia Hunters Harvest 8,332 Spring Turkeys

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Preliminary harvest figures for the 2012 spring gobbler season are in and West Virginia hunters checked in 8,332 bearded turkeys, according to Frank Jezioro, director of the Division of Natural Resources. This year’s harvest is a 10 percent decline from the 2011 harvest and a 15 percent decline from the previous five-year average.

Biologists have long recognized that the brood counts two years prior are fairly accurate predictors of harvest since most of the kill is composed of two-year old birds. Brood production in 2010 was 28 percent lower than 2009; therefore, the 2012 spring harvest was lower because fewer birds were available. Brood production was higher in 2011 but still below the long-term average.

“Because future harvests are dependent on brood production and survival, let’s hope for a dry June and a more normal spring in 2013, if there is such a thing,” said Jezioro.

The 2012 spring kill is the lowest since 1989, when 7,245 birds were harvested by hunters. While all the other districts saw a decline in harvest, hunters in District 1 (northern counties) registered a 7 percent increase over last year. The southern districts saw the greatest reduction in harvest, with Districts 5 and 4 declining by 25 and 21 percent, respectively.

The top counties were Mason with a kill of 343, Preston (330), Harrison (282), Wood (237) and Greenbrier (235). Rounding out the top 10 counties were Jackson (229), Marshall (227), Upshur (224), Monongalia (222) and Kanawha (213).

County20082009201020112012
Barbour224209157159179
Brooke7986919374
Hancock719810910792
Harrison291310265242282
Marion178175179135163
Marshall222214316254227
Monongalia247215257218222
Ohio5364949287
Preston371378321325330
Taylor115101867693
Tucker8568685862
Wetzel253213199133210
Dist. 1 Subtotal2,1892,1312,1421,8922,021
Berkeley7083898588
Grant115121102102117
Hampshire165194149118119
Hardy141172158123100
Jefferson3444274242
Mineral1071351217785
Morgan8863687056
Pendleton1011149810094
Dist. 2 Subtotal821926812717701
Braxton199226186172118
Clay7789658575
Lewis243241237201181
Nicholas210157163166160
Pocahontas102117106107125
Randolph163198197140150
Upshur288298241212224
Webster981131029995
Dist. 3 Subtotal1,3801,4391,2971,1821,128
Fayette279255215237179
Greenbrier292266226253235
McDowell250181270225156
Mercer253215175187141
Monroe142178145155161
Raleigh221227182215185
Summers258219231223175
Wyoming209227287242132
Dist. 4 Subtotal1,9041,7681,7311,7371,364
Boone118111185185144
Cabell138157236134133
Kanawha247219261310213
Lincoln188183278188157
Logan157160194169133
Mason394419551447343
Mingo829511513892
Putnam232256323237196
Wayne14514623418992
Dist. 5 Subtotal1,7011,7462,3771,9971,503
Calhoun14112912096138
Doddridge144135150121107
Gilmer139147135138132
Jackson310257286291229
Pleasants8963726882
Ritchie208206239212205
Roane229219207195193
Tyler174167196137132
Wirt185175166157160
Wood315279279276237
Dist. 6 Subtotal1,9341,7771,8501,6911,615
State Total9,9299,78710,2099,2168,332