2008 West Virginia Spring Gobbler Harvest Reported

No Gravatar

Hunters in West Virginia harvested 9,895 turkeys during the 2008 spring gobbler season, according to Frank Jezioro, Director of the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources (DNR). Preliminary harvest figures indicate this year’s spring turkey harvest was about the same as last year’s harvest (less than 1 percent lower than the 9,965 birds taken in 2007). 

The top five counties this spring were Mason (396), Preston (371), Jackson (319), Wood (316) and Harrison (291). Thirty-five of the state’s 55 counties had lower harvests this year. Three districts had lower harvests this year with District 2 (11 percent lower), District 6 (4 percent lower) and District 4 (2 percent lower) decreasing in harvest when compared to 2007.  Three districts had higher harvests rates with District 5 having the largest increase at 5 percent.  The highest harvests were reported in DNR District 1 (2,184), followed by District 6 (1,944), District 4 (1,868), District 5 (1,705), District 3 (1,372) and District 2 (822).

“The reduced gobbling activity and a slightly lower harvest rate this past spring were the result of cold and wet rains, particularly during the first week of the season,” according to Curtis Taylor, DNR Wildlife Resources Section Chief.

Biologists had predicted a slightly higher spring gobbler harvest in 2008 than in 2007, based on better-than-average brood reports the past two years. Wildlife Biologists have determined the level of brood production accurately forecasts spring turkey harvests two years later, as these older birds tend to gobble more and are more susceptible to harvest. Field reports indicated that hunting pressure in many areas of the state was lower than normal. Also, higher gas prices may have kept hunters from traveling to favorite hunting grounds. Hunters can look forward to better spring gobbler hunting next year, since brood production was good in 2007.

West Virginia Spring Wild Turkey Harvest , 2004-2008
           
County 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008
Barbour 188 200 176 177 225
Brooke 144 119 121 101 79
Hancock 182 131 137 117 71
Harrison 277 270 254 237 291
Marion 190 166 190 201 178
Marshall 278 264 306 279 218
Monongalia 292 235 310 260 248
Ohio 116 109 137 77 53
Preston 348 375 400 330 371
Taylor 116 102 101 84 115
Tucker 53 88 98 83 85
Wetzel 200 244 200 204 250
Dist. I Subtotal 2,384 2,303 2,430 2,150 2,184
Berkeley 74 83 107 71 70
Grant 138 108 130 144 114
Hampshire 200 192 220 163 174
Hardy 217 127 226 156 145
Jefferson 40 43 51 46 34
Mineral 86 108 135 114 105
Morgan 61 85 116 87 79
Pendleton 124 108 136 140 101
Dist. II Subtotal 940 854 1,121 921 822
Braxton 227 234 282 211 199
Clay 83 74 82 80 77
Lewis 279 268 258 245 243
Nicholas 181 175 226 188 210
Pocahontas 74 97 128 127 104
Randolph 165 132 176 170 162
Upshur 225 206 258 212 286
Webster 96 68 108 98 91
Dist. III Subtotal 1,330 1,254 1,518 1,331 1,372
Fayette 271 264 261 231 279
Greenbrier 239 276 298 264 290
McDowell 214 182 270 214 250
Mercer 294 389 311 269 254
Monroe 167 217 200 170 141
Raleigh 299 328 264 282 211
Summers 316 387 287 284 259
Wyoming 166 172 243 197 184
Dist. IV Subtotal 1,966 2,215 2,134 1,911 1,868
Boone 189 141 159 132 119
Cabell 141 152 146 125 139
Kanawha 260 297 263 254 244
Lincoln 208 227 223 172 190
Logan 159 155 169 112 158
Mason 400 451 493 407 396
Mingo 81 92 100 80 82
Putnam 211 233 246 178 232
Wayne 198 244 207 164 145
Dist. V Subtotal 1,847 1,992 2,006 1,624 1,705
Calhoun 183 164 193 150 141
Doddridge 191 214 199 117 144
Gilmer 186 183 195 150 139
Jackson 250 333 353 332 319
Pleasants 89 90 97 59 85
Ritchie 291 341 317 244 208
Roane 294 297 293 268 231
Tyler 178 199 198 155 175
Wirt 215 234 272 216 186
Wood 229 284 409 337 316
Dist. VI Subtotal 2,106 2,339 2,526 2,028 1,944
State Total 10,573 10,957 11,735 9,965 9,895