Spring gobbler season begins on Saturday

Hunters in the area will soon be grooming local forests for the chance at bagging a spring gobbler.


This year’s Pennsylvania spring gobbler season will kick off on Saturday, with many hunters entering the woods looking for a prize bird.

The season begins on Saturday, Apr. 30, and runs until May 31, with a season limit of one gobbler (bearded bird) per hunter.

Legal hunting hours from the opening day of the spring gobbler season through the third Saturday (April 30-May 14) will be one-half hour before sunrise until noon.

However, the remainder of the season (May 16-31) will be expanded to run all day, from one-half hour before sunrise until one-half hour after sunset.

Hunters who have purchased a second spring gobbler season license may harvest up to two bearded turkeys, one per day.

Pennsylvania Game Commission Wildlife Conservation Officer Victor Rosa said that overall he thinks it will be a great season.

“While Wyoming County has an incredible amount of turkeys, a hunter still needs to scout and prepare for the crafty birds,” Rosa said.

He noted that there are many places in the area for hunters to scour as many landowners are involved in land cooperatives with the Pennsylvania Game Commission.

People can log on to the Game Commission’s website at www.pgc.state.pa.us for more information on land cooperatives.

Also, Rosa noted that gobblers have in the area of Route 6 outside of Tunkhannock, and that Pennsylvania State Game Lands #57 is also a great area to hunt.

In looking at the forecast for gobbler season, Rosa said that weather doesn’t generally play a huge role.

However, safety is a big concern during spring gobbler season, as well as any hunting season.

While hunters are not required to wear orange during spring gobbler, Rosa recommends they do, especially when moving around.

He noted that there is an undue amount of accidents especially during turkey season. Rosa encourage doing anything you can to prevent it. Safety is a big concern. Be positive on your target.

Legal sporting arms are: shotguns plugged to three-shell capacity in the chamber and magazine combined; muzzleloading shotguns; and crossbows and bows with broadhead bolts or arrows of cutting-edge design.

Shot size must be no larger than No. 4 lead, bismuth-tin and tungsten-iron, or No. 2 steel. Rifle-shotgun combinations also may be used, but no single-projectile ammunition may be used or carried.

Successful spring gobbler hunters must properly tag their turkey and report the harvest to the Game Commission within 10 days, using the postage-paid report card provided with their Digest, or through the Pennsylvania Automated License System.

Information to be reported includes the hunter’s name and address; date and location of kill (WMU, county, township) time of kill and sporting arm used.