North Dakota’s fall turkey season is set, and online and paper applications will be available mid-August. The deadline for applying is Sept. 4.
Stan Kohn, upland game management supervisor for the State Game and Fish Department, said 4,020 licenses are available to hunters, 125 fewer than last year. According to Kohn, the slight decline in licenses is a result of four years of poor production, and poor recruitment of young into the population because of wet, cool springs.
“The decrease in the number of licenses is consistent with our management strategy of reducing licenses when the population warrants protection or when turkey numbers have fallen below normal levels within a unit,” Kohn said. “If turkey production is exceptionally good this year, an additional 1,300 licenses may be used early this fall in specific hunting units.”
An experimental hunting season will continue for the USDA-ARS Northern Great Plains Research Lab in Mandan. A maximum of 30 licenses will be available. These licenses will be available at the Game and Fish Department once a person first obtains a permit from USDA-ARS.
An experimental turkey bow hunting season will continue within the city of Bismarck to help control a growing population of birds in residential areas. A maximum of 25 licenses will be distributed on a first-come, first-served basis to individuals who are licensed to bow hunt deer within the city. These licenses will be available at the Game and Fish Department in Bismarck once a person has a valid city archery permit.
A maximum of 75 turkey licenses will be issued for a concurrent experimental bow season on the North Dakota Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation land south of Bismarck. Licenses will be available at the Game and Fish Department after a person receives an access permit from NDDOCR.
A maximum of 45 turkey licenses will be issued for a concurrent experimental bow season for the city of Fargo and specific surrounding areas. Licenses will be distributed to those licensed to bow hunt deer within the city limits of Fargo, and will be available at the Game and Fish headquarters in Bismarck after a person has received a valid city archery permit.
Hunting units 21 (Hettinger and Adams counties) and 53 (Divide and Williams counties) will remain closed to fall turkey hunting in 2013 because of low turkey numbers.
The fall wild turkey season extends from Oct. 12 through Jan. 5, 2014.
Prospective hunters, including gratis applicants, can apply online, or print out an application to mail, at the Game and Fish website, gf.nd.gov. Paper applications will be available from Game and Fish offices, county auditors and license vendors.
Applications are also accepted at the department’s toll-free licensing line, (800) 406-6409. A service fee is added for license applications made over the phone.
Only North Dakota residents are eligible to apply in the first lottery. Nonresidents can apply for fall turkey licenses that are still available following the first lottery.