Turkey Population

redjackson

8 pointer
Dec 4, 2010
827
Barren County
Down in Barren the last 5-8 years. Plus side, seen 5 different jakes this year. Last year only seen one. Neighbors 1/2 mile down the road seen 7 jakes running together. High hopes for next year. Still been nice to get out the few times i have.
 

cedar creek

10 pointer
Sep 7, 2014
1,860
Same here, I hunt Nelson/Marion line and the farm was the quietest it has been in 5 years or more. However I was allowed to hunt a property in Bradfordsville this weekend and Saturday morning heard at least 7 different gobblers and Lord knows how many hens.
Population has been down around here, Clay and laurel counties, for a long time. I have still been able to scratch out one or 2 a year, but it's been tough hunting. Since my oldest boy has started being able to hunt in earnest now, I don't know that I will even try to kill one. He has tagged one in youth season, and is trying for another one. Told him I wouldn't hunt them too hard until he tagged out, and I've held to that. If I can get him tagged out, I will be satisfied with the season. I'm still going, but truthfully, it's a tough decision on shooting them or not. The mature adult in me says to hold off, and just watch them. The young adult in me says to knock their beak off lol.
I passed on a ton on my place, he the only one I have seen
 

Meatstick

12 pointer
Oct 25, 2013
5,287
Washington County
I’m in western Kentucky. I honestly believe our numbers are either increasing or it may be only on the farms I trap, coon, possum, skunk, coyote, fox, bobcat and coyote hunt on.

Most turkeys I have ever seen/heard during spring opener. I’ve also noticed the raccoon population is dropping considerably on how many I catch and hunt.
Same here. Nest raiders, from crows to coons, have it rough on my ground. The turkeys are reaping what I sow.
 

Oldrook

6 pointer
Jul 19, 2020
246
Soky
I’m not sure. Saw lots in the fall deer hunting. Gobbled like crazy on those cold sunny mornings. Heard several shots opening day but never heard a single gobble. I made one Yelp about 9:30 and had one come in silent about 30 minutes later. Second day one gobbled 100 times in the middle of a pasture before I lured him. But I had one work in behind me that made one gobble and never made another sound. Definitely fewer birds but I’m not sure if I got spoiled by the peak population and forgot how hard it was to harvest a turkey
 

JGD

6 pointer
Feb 3, 2008
156
Nelson County
“I haven't heard of flocks of hundreds of birds at the bottom of Helsinki for many years. It used to be an everyday occurrence”

Between Bardstown and Culvertown? If so, I remember those flocks but haven’t seen them in years. Many other places in the area used to have good to big flocks and I see very few if any at all in those places.

John
 

Tankt

12 pointer
Dec 26, 2019
4,457
Kentucky
“I haven't heard of flocks of hundreds of birds at the bottom of Helsinki for many years. It used to be an everyday occurrence”

Between Bardstown and Culvertown? If so, I remember those flocks but haven’t seen them in years. Many other places in the area used to have good to big flocks and I see very few if any at all in those places.

John
Yes sir...that is the spot. I know of 3 places where it was nothing to see that many all the time. This was the mid-90's
 

buckchaser

8 pointer
Jan 11, 2003
988
Ky, USA.
I’ve hunted hard since season opened and I haven’t seen a gobbler yet. I heard some opening morning but they were real distance off. Used to after work I would walk the fields in hope of catching one out in a field and go from there and see what happened this year I haven’t spotted one yet.

Years ago I remember always seeing groups of jakes when I was hunting, the last 3-4 years I’ve seen practically no jakes so I knew things were going to get tough and they have. I’m going to keep hunting and I want to kill one but on the hand I hate to kill one even if the opportunity arises. Good news crappie are biting. Toughest season ever for me.
 

Luther's Feist

10 pointer
Oct 25, 2014
1,443
Coeburn, Va
I'm not a turkey hunter but I do normally see quiet a few out riding back roads or when going mushroom hunting. I've noticed in the past several years I'm seeing less and less. Actually just read an article on Facebook about it and it said most of the decline was due to the increase in the number of predators such as coon possum coyote and skunk
 

bgkyarcher

12 pointer
Aug 23, 2011
19,715
BG
I'm not a turkey hunter but I do normally see quiet a few out riding back roads or when going mushroom hunting. I've noticed in the past several years I'm seeing less and less. Actually just read an article on Facebook about it and it said most of the decline was due to the increase in the number of predators such as coon possum coyote and skunk
I was discussing it with Pentail last night on FB. An article stating baiting with corn could be a contributing factor. I don't see how it is an issue now, when it wasn't 25 years ago. Hunters have baited with corn for decades, and the turkey population boomed until 8-10 years ago. I've been wrong before, but this doesn't make sense to me.
 

Redlined

12 pointer
Sep 23, 2005
3,646
In The Tree Next To Ya
I was discussing it with Pentail last night on FB. An article stating baiting with corn could be a contributing factor. I don't see how it is an issue now, when it wasn't 25 years ago. Hunters have baited with corn for decades, and the turkey population boomed until 8-10 years ago. I've been wrong before, but this doesn't make sense to me.
I'm not buying that either, the turkey population is down everywhere, even in states that don't allow baiting deer so I don't see that being a factor. I do however, see the number of nest raiders and coyotes(and bobcats) being a problem. If the hens somehow mange to not get eaten, there's a line of possums, coons, and skunks waiting to eat every egg she lays. Add in some cold springs and bad hatches and you get what we got.
 


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