Hunts designed for youth and novice hunters

On the weekends of April 7-8, 14-15, and 21-22, the Westar Energy Green Team will host first-time turkey hunters at its Jeffrey Energy Center west of Topeka. Assisted by experienced volunteer guides and hunting from stationary ground blinds, youngsters and their adult mentors will hunt in prime fields closed to the public until the youth hunters are through.

Hunts will begin in the early morning. Participants must bring shotguns, shells, and turkey permits for Unit 2; everything else will be provided.

While an adult mentor is required, no turkey hunting experience is needed because this hunt is designed for those who have minimal experience. Success rates in past years of the program have been high, and with good bird numbers again this year, young hunters should have a good chance to bag a bird.

Hunters will be selected on a first-come, first-served basis. To apply, phone Brad Loveless at Westar Energy, 785-575-8115.

Another special spring turkey hunt will be conducted in the scenic Flint Hills region of the state, near Council Grove. To introduce spring turkey hunting to area youngsters, the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks, the National Wild Turkey Federation, Quail Unlimited, and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers are preparing for the Council Grove 7th Annual Spring Turkey Hunt on Saturday, April 7.

Hunters age 16 and younger will be provided an opportunity to pattern their shotguns and scout for turkeys the evening before the hunt. The morning of the hunt, they will be guided to area locations on public and private land.

Program volunteers will arrange transportation to hunting sites and will be available to assist in the hunt. The event will also include door prizes, a turkey hunting presentation, and a hunter’s breakfast and lunch.

Lodging is available in nearby Council Grove, and camping is available at Council Grove Lake. Participants are encouraged to explore historic Council Grove and scenic Morris County while visiting the area.

Registration is required by April 1. For more information, contact Brent Konen, Council Grove Wildlife Area manager, at 620-767-5900.