Eastern turkey hunting in Texas began last Wednesday, April 15 and runs through May 14 and hunters are reminded all eastern turkeys must be reported to the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department within 24 hours of harvest.
A list of check stations can be found online at https://tpwd.texas.gov/huntwild/hunt/season/stations/ . In addition to physical check stations, hunters have the option of reporting harvests online at www.tpwd.texas.gov/turkey/ or on the new My Texas Hunt Harvest app. The app is now available for download for Android devices at Google Play and for iOS devices at the App Store. Hunters who use the electronic reporting options will be issued a confirmation number upon completion of the registration process. Hunters still have to tag harvested birds.
This will be the final hunting season that physical check stations will be open as TPWD is transitioning from physical check stations for mandatory eastern turkey harvest reporting to electronic reporting only in spring 2016.
The new harvest reporting app can also be used as a tool for voluntarily reporting and tracking harvests of other resident game species, including Rio Grande turkey. With My Texas Hunt Harvest, hunters can log harvested game animals and view harvest history, including dates and locations of every hunt.
As for eastern turkey prospects, TPWD turkey program leader Jason Hardin indicates growing populations north of U.S. Highway 82 along the Red River from Grayson to Bowie County. “Reports out of the Pineywoods have been mixed and I expect we will see a bump in harvest, but nothing substantial,” he says. “Landowners, managers and hunters who observed eastern turkeys last year will be seeing them again this year.”