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Wanted: Volunteers to count wild turkeys

The largest number of wild turkey flocks in 15 years was counted across New York State by citizen volunteers last August.

The state Department of Environmental Conservation hopes to build on that success when the 2017 Summer Wild Turkey Sighting Survey starts next Tuesday.

Interested citizens are encouraged to record observations of wild turkey in August as a way to gauge wild turkey populations across the state.

The highest number of young turkeys per hen last year locally were reported in southern Erie and Wyoming counties. (NYS Department of Environmental Conservation)

Surveys can be reported to the DEC online or by mail.

"Citizen science efforts like the Summer Turkey Sighting Survey provide our wildlife managers with invaluable data and give people the opportunity to help DEC monitor New York's wildlife resources," said Basil Seggos, DEC commissioner.

The 737 hen-flocks counted last August were the highest since 2002. State officials attributed that to increased awareness and ease of the survey as well as good production by hens following the mild winter of 2015-16.

DEC data shows turkey hens in Western New York and the Capital Region have been the most productive over the last five years.


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