Fall Wild Turkey Hunting Application Period Open

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The Michigan Department of Natural Resources announced the 2006 fall wild turkey application period began July 1 and will conclude on Aug. 1.

A total of 56,450 licenses will be made available through a lottery for the units open to hunting. This license total includes 6,850 general licenses and 49,000 private land licenses. There are 14 wild turkey management units totaling 31,935 square miles open for fall turkey hunting during the Oct. 2- Nov. 14 season. Most of the units open to fall hunting are located in the southern third of the state.

"Hunters are allowed to purchase one fall turkey license and harvest a bird of either sex during the fall season. Last fall, hunters spent 103,404 days afield pursuing turkeys, harvesting 4,722 birds," said Al Stewart, DNR upland game bird specialist. "Hunter survey results indicate that the majority of turkey hunters that participated in the 2005 fall turkey season ranked their hunting experience as excellent, very good or good," said Stewart.

Hunters may apply for a turkey hunting license at any authorized license dealer, at DNR Operations Service Centers or online at www.michigan.gov/dnr. Those who apply must pay a nonrefundable application fee of $4, which does not include the cost of the license.

During the application process, it is important that hunters verify their customer ID (Michigan Driver License, DNR Sportcard or state of Michigan ID card) numbers. An incorrect customer ID number will cause individuals to become ineligible for a license.

Hunters may use MasterCard, VISA, American Express or Discover when applying for a license online at the DNR E-License system, available 24 hours a day during the application period.

Individuals that encounter problems with their fall wild turkey application may obtain assistance by calling (517) 373-3904 Monday through Friday between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m.

Applicants may check drawing results online beginning Aug. 28. Applicants who did not apply online will be notified of drawing results by mail before Sept. 6.

If any licenses remain after the drawing, unsuccessful applicants may purchase one leftover license in person at any license dealer on a first-come, first-served basis for a one week period beginning Sept. 11 at 10 a.m. (EDT). Any licenses that remain as of Sept.18 at 10 a.m. (EDT) will be available for purchase over the counter by any hunter, including individuals who did not apply for a fall wild turkey license. These licenses will be sold until the quotas are met.

Wild turkey hunting in the fall enables wildlife managers to stabilize or reduce wild turkey numbers in certain areas of the state to meet local goals based on habitat conditions and public attitudes.