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Third annual youth spring turkey season keeps youth in the woods for a lifetime

spectr17

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Third annual youth spring turkey season keeps youth in the woods for a lifetime

3/13/09


Youth all over the state will head to the woods for the third annual youth spring turkey season April 4-5. The season is held the weekend before the spring turkey season, which runs April 6 through May 6, and gives youth the first opportunity to harvest a turkey.

According to Lance Meek, hunter education coordinator for the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation, the youth spring turkey season not only gets young hunters in the woods early, it also keeps them there for a lifetime.

"Getting youth involved is what keeps the traditions of hunting strong in Oklahoma," Meek said. "A season designated for youth is a great way to make the sport all about them. Hunters and anglers are conservation's best friend in Oklahoma because they not only pay for conservation through their license and equipment purchases, but their interest in the outdoors ensures a future for conservation."

Youth spring turkey season will be open to hunters under 18 years old. While hunting during the season, youth are required to be accompanied by an adult 18 years old or older.

Youth ages 16 and 17 must possess a valid hunting license, unless exempt, and a turkey license. They are exempt from the fishing and hunting legacy permit. Youth under 16 years old are exempt from the purchase of a hunting license and the fishing and hunting legacy permit but must possess a turkey license unless exempt. For more information, consult the current "Oklahoma Hunting Guide." License requirements for nonresident youth are available in the current "Oklahoma Hunting Guide" or online at wildlifedepartment.com.

Youth who have completed the Wildlife Department's hunter education course and who plan to hunt during the youth spring turkey season need to be accompanied by an adult 18 years old or older. The adult may not hunt or possess any firearms or archery equipment. Youth who have not completed the hunter education course can still hunt during the youth spring turkey season, but their license will have an apprentice designation and they must be accompanied by a licensed hunter 21 years or older who possesses a certificate of hunter education or is exempt from the hunter education requirements.

Youth who participate in the youth spring turkey season but do not harvest a turkey may use their unfilled license to hunt turkeys during the regular spring season.

The youth season limit is one tom turkey, which is included in the county and regular spring season limits.

According to Meek, youth hunters should remember the following safety tips while hunting during the youth spring turkey season:

* Conceal harvested birds and decoys while walking through the woods.

* Sit with your back against a tree that is large enough to hide your whole body.

* Avoid wearing colors such as red, white or blue while turkey hunting since these are common turkey colors.

* If you see another hunter approaching, speak to them clearly rather than whistling or calling to them with a turkey call.


Media Contact:
Michael Bergin or Micah Holmes (405) 521-3856
 


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