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TPWD: Spring Turkey Season Looks Promising

With the early spring green-up and mild winter weather, spring wild turkey season is shaping up to be very productive for hunters, according to Texas Parks and Wildlife Department.

Most of Texas experienced a bump in production and recruitment in 2023 following fall 2022, which had lots of acorns across central and east Texas, and early green up coupled with warm late winter conditions across most of the Rio Grande wild turkey range. Hunters can expect to see many young birds this spring, with a large number of jakes setting the stage for an increase in male harvest in 2025 and beyond.

The 2022 drought means hunters can expect to see fewer two-year-old males – the most frequently harvested wild turkey cohort – on the landscape this spring. Fortunately, Texas has a low harvest rate (13 percent of males harvested annually) relative to most of the country. Texas has a large amount of older age-class males due to these low harvest rates. Males that survive their second birthday are wiser and often harder to hunt.

“Don’t just limit yourself to the early season,” said Jason Hardin, TPWD Wild Turkey Program leader. “The middle and later portions of the season usually have fewer hunters in the woods, and you never know when you will strike a tom in the mood to strut and gobble. Go early and go often.”

TPWD reminds hunters to review the Outdoor Annual before opening day to ensure they are hunting during a legal season. Hunters can check the TPWD website for exact season dates for the county where they plan to hunt. Hunters must possess an Upland Game Bird Stamp Endorsement to hunt wild turkeys in Texas.

Spring season dates

Youth Only

Rio Grande: North Zone — March 23 — 24; May 18 — 19

Rio Grande: South Zone — March 9 — 10; May 4— 5

Spring Regular Season

Rio Grande: North Zone — March 30 — May 12

Rio Grande: South Zone — March 16 — Apr.28

Rio Grande: Special One Turkey Bag Limit — April 1 — 30

Eastern Turkey: April 22 – May 14

—courtesy TPWD