The N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission and the National Wild Turkey Federation are offering 16 free turkey hunting seminars across North Carolina in March and April before spring gobbler season arrives.
The seminars, which will be conducted on introductory and advanced levels, will be held from 6:30-8:30 p.m. at eight locations throughout the state. They are open on a first-come, first-serve basis to all ages, although participants 16 years and younger will need parental permission to register.
The introductory seminars are designed for novice hunters or those who have never hunted turkey and would like to learn more. Topics will include biology, hunting methods, calls and decoys, firearms and ammo selection, camouflage clothing, and turkey cleaning and cooking techniques.
The advanced seminars are for experienced turkey hunters. They will focus on advanced biology, and more complex hunting tactics, calls and decoys. Advanced seminars also will include tips and strategies for dealing with stubborn, hard-to-hunt gobblers.
A question-and-answer session, along with a brief presentation on hunter recruitment, retention and re-activation, will conclude each seminar.
Dates and locations are:
• March 3, 5 (Intro) and March 17 (Advanced), Centennial Campus Center for Wildlife Education, 1751 Varsity Drive, Raleigh, 919-707-0202.
• March 9 (Intro) and March 10 (Advanced), N.C. State University Cooperative Extension, Caldwell County Center, 120 Hospital Ave NE, Lenoir, 828-757-1290.
• March 11 (Intro) and March 12 (Advanced), N.C. State University Cooperative Extension, Forsyth County Center, 1450 Fairchild Rd., Winston-Salem, 336-703-2850.
• March 18 (Intro) and March 19 (Advanced), N.C. State University Cooperative Extension, Cumberland County Center, 301 East Mountain Dr., Fayetteville, 910-321-6880.
• March 23 (Intro) and March 24 (Advanced), Bass Pro Shops, 8181 Concord Mills Blvd., Concord, 704-979-2200.
• March 25 (Intro) and March 26 (Advanced), N.C. State University Cooperative Extension, Onslow County Center, 4024 Richlands Hwy., Jacksonville, 910-455-5873.
• March 30 (Intro) and March 31 (Advanced), N.C. State University Cooperative Extension, Pitt County Center, 403 Government Circle, Suite 2, Greenville, 252-902-1702.
• April 1 (Intro) and April 2 (Advanced), N.C. State University Cooperative Extension, Mountain Horticulture Crops Research and Extension Center, 455 Research Dr., Mills River, 828-684-3562.
The statewide season for male or bearded turkey is April 11 through May 9, with a youth-only week from April 4-10. Regulations and restrictions on turkey hunting, including information on youth season, are available in the 2014-15 Inland Fishing, Hunting and Trapping Regulations Digest.
“Prior to 2015, the Wildlife Commission has held turkey hunting seminars only in Raleigh,” said Walter “Deet” James, the Commission’s hunting-heritage biologist. “Because they were such a huge success and filled up almost immediately, we wanted to offer them in other parts of the state to bring awareness of conservation and wildlife-associated recreation to a greater proportion of North Carolinians.”
Pre-registration for the turkey hunting seminars is required. Register online (www.ncwildlife.org/sbs) or contact Casey Williams at 919-707-0202 or email@example.com for more information. Visit www.ncwildlife.org/hunting and click on the “What to Hunt” link for information about wild turkeys in North Carolina.