May 13, 2019

New Hampshire: Regulatory Changes to Spring Turkey Season Discussed at Caucus Luncheon

Contact: Joe Mullin, New England States Coordinator

On May 8, the bipartisan and bicameral New Hampshire Legislative Sportsmen’s Caucus held a Caucus luncheon in Concord to learn of new regulatory changes regarding the spring turkey season.

Hosted at the historic Upham-Walker House, attendees included all four Caucus Co-Chairs, approximately 30 Caucus members, and six new legislators who joined the Caucus during the event. The Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation (CSF) was also joined by the New Hampshire Wildlife Federation and the National Wild Turkey Federation.

New Hampshire Fish and Game Department Executive Director Glenn Normandeau presented to attendees, offering a brief history on the recovery of the state’s turkey population, as well as recent regulatory changes to this year’s Spring turkey season.

As Executive Director Normandeau explained, New Hampshire’s wild turkeys are an example of a success story resulting from the implementation of the North American Model of Wildlife Conservation. Once entirely depleted, the species now thrives after its reintroduction in the 1970s.

“Another benefit that sportsmen are seeing is the ability to harvest a second male or bearded bird in certain wildlife management units (WMU),” said Normandeau. This regulatory change provides the Granite State’s sportsmen and women with every reason to be out in the field many more days this month. Turkey hunters are now able to dedicate more time and effort towards a second male/bearded turkey in the spring. However, sportsmen should be aware that this change applies only to specific WMUs and once a second turkey is harvested, the hunter may not take a gobbler in the Fall. All interested parties are encouraged to reference the New Hampshire Hunting Digest for further details.

CSF commends the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department on making these regulatory changes and for providing the state’s hunters with enhanced opportunities during the Spring turkey season.

Studies conducted at both the state and federal level have found that the number of hunters and trappers have been on a generally declining trend over the past several decades. To increase recruitment, retention, and reactivation (R3) of hunters and trappers, which initiative do you think would have the greatest impact?

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