It should come as no surprise that a state like Texas tops our list. Both its sheer size and the long lineage of bird hunters play a vital role in our decision. With over half a million birds calling this state home, it is a great state for a serious turkey hunter.
They are home to both Rios and Easterns. If your goal as a turkey hunter is to snag one of each bird or more, Texas can help you out with that. There is very little public ground suitable for turkey hunting in Texas, but it can be found. Even the locals all lease their land or just know someone who does.
As far as the Midwest goes, Kentucky is a true gem of a state for turkey hunting. Population numbers have been high for along time, coming in at over 300,000 birds. The statistics alone are enough to write home about.
But it is not just eh excessive amount of birds that call Kentucky home that makes it so great. Hunting in Kentucky is like hunting the entire country in on estate. You can find yourself wandering through pastures, to crawling up mountains in a matter of miles. This keeps the turkey hunting exciting, challenging and makes for a very rewarding hunt.
You are permitted to take home two gobblers for each hunter. While Kentucky is a mid-size state, most of the land is privately owned. So a quality lease awards you the ultimate freedom to hunt the land as if it was your own.
Much like its cousin to the north, Tennessee has some serious bird hunting opportunities. Southern states often have traditions of hunting that run deep. But it would be hard to rival the hunting culture that lives in Tennessee.
I mean, they do sell 120,000 licenses a year with a population of right around 300,000 birds.
You can experience the same variety of terrain that you would in Kentucky. With a mix of flat land,m forests, and mountains. Keeping any hunter entertained with an exciting hunt. You are mostly looking at Easterns when you hunt Tennessee, and you would be hard-pressed to not leave with a couple in your bag.
Georgia is a great state to hunt turkey in. There is no doubt about that. However, it is not a turkey hunting mecca like most would consider Kentucky or Tennessee to be.
There is one glaring factor above all else that gave Georgia a spot in my top 5. That being it’s extremely long turkey hunting season. It lasts from March 20th all the way into mid-May. That alone makes it a great place for last season or early season hunters to make the trip.
They are no slouch on numbers either. With more than 300,00 0birds and only 45,00 licenses sold. Combine that with the extended season, and the chances of you bagging a bird worth mounting are through the roof!
Additionally, like many southern states, the terrain is awesome to hunt. North Georgia is very different from the south giving you plenty of options depending on the terrain you want to hunt!
Rounding off our list is the state of Wisconsin. Seen by many as one of the premier spots for turkeys in the Midwest, Wisconsin is home to some great hunting.
Their population tilts the scales at 350,000 and a diverse agriculture network makes it an almost ideal habitat to grow birds. They can be found in all corners of the states where their habitat changes from hardwood forests to pasture lands and creeks.
The Wisconsin DNR had this to say about turkey hunting in the cheese state
“The wild turkey is truly one of Wisconsin’s wildlife management success stories. A key role in the success of the wild turkey management program can be attributed to hunters through their purchase of the Wild Turkey Stamp which provides vital financial support in providing for future opportunities for turkey management and hunting in Wisconsin. Since wild turkeys were first successfully reintroduced into Wisconsin in 1976, population levels continue to increase and expand statewide. Successful restoration of the wild turkey resulted from tremendous hunter and landowner support, good survival and high-quality habitat.”
A state with serious backing from its government is what makes the future of the state’s hunting look even brighter than it is now and boy is it already bright!
Full article on hunting in Wisconsin