Wild turkey crossing the road (photo from Wikimedia Commons)

27 June 2024

Statewide, wild turkeys (Meleagris gallopavo) in Pennsylvania declined again last year. Did their status improve in the last 12 months? To answer that question, the PA Game Commission (PGC) is conducting their Annual Pennsylvania Wild Turkey Sighting Survey from July 1 through August 31 and is asking the public to help. Right now this link shows prior results. Click here to enter data after July 1.

In the survey press release PGC reported:

The Statewide reproductive success last summer, which is measured by the number of young turkeys (poults) seen per all hens seen, was 2.9 poults per hen, compared to 3.1 poults per hen in 2022 and 2021.”

PGC press release, 20 June 2024

Allegheny County’s predominant Wildlife Management Unit, WMU 2B below, had mixed results. Overall, there were fewer turkeys but reproductive success was higher than in 2022. However, our WMU contributed to the downward spiral as we had only 2.24 poults per hen.

Pennsylvania Wildlife Management Units (WMUs), map from PA Game Commission

There are many factors that contribute to wild turkey population swings. This 4.5 minute video describes them.

video embedded from Penn State Extension on YouTube

In the next two months count turkeys when you can.


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