Regular season April 8-May 31; special hunts application deadline March 16

The 2009 spring turkey season runs April 8-May 31, and hunters across the state are already making preparations. Turkey permits allow hunters to use a shotgun, crossbow, or bow throughout the regular season. Archery-only and youth/disabled seasons run concurrently, April 1-7.

Turkey permits for units 1, 2, and 3 may be purchased online from the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks (KDWP) website, or over the counter at any license vendor. A regulations brochure may be downloaded from the KDWP website and printed or obtained at KDWP offices and license vendors. This brochure also includes a resident-only, limited-draw permit application for Unit 4, but the application deadline for these permits was Feb. 20. The brochure can be used only for general regulations regarding the 2009 Kansas spring turkey hunting season.

Archery hunters, anyone 16 years old or younger, and those with disability permits may hunt April 1-7. (All youth must have an adult supervisor during the youth season.) Hunters younger than 16 are not required to have hunter education certification to hunt while they are supervised by a person 18 or older, but they must have a turkey permit. (During the regular season, persons age 12 through 15 may hunt without adult supervision if they have completed a certified hunter education course.) Hunter education certification may not be obtained until age 11, and all hunters younger than 12 must have adult supervision to hunt at any time.

Online license and permit purchasing simplifies preparation. Online license and permit sales are available at the KDWP website. Permits (except for Unit 4) may also be purchased over the counter, and second turkey game tags are available in units 2 and 3. Last year, KDWP sold 38,990 Spring Turkey permits and 19,397 Second Turkey game tags, and 35,040 turkeys were taken.

A spring turkey atlas showing all public hunting lands and spring Walk-In Hunter Access program lands will be available at KDWP offices and the KDWP website in late March.

To enhance the 2009 spring turkey hunting experience, KDWP is joining with the Kansas University Endowment Association and other private landowners to offer special spring turkey hunts. Special hunts will be offered in 12 counties (Atchison, Chase, Clay, Dickinson, Douglas, Leavenworth, Osage, Ottawa, Pottawatomie, Riley, Saline, and Sumner), opening more than 5,000 acres for 95 special hunt opportunities. The special hunts range from youth-only and youth-mentor hunts to open hunts. The KU Endowment Association has signed up properties in four counties where seven youth-only hunts will be offered.

All special hunt opportunities are available by online application and a random drawing. Those applicants who are drawn for a hunt will be notified by email with additional hunt information and their special hunt permit. The online application and hunt information is on the KDWP website. The application deadline is Monday, March 16.

Access to lands enrolled in these special hunts will be limited to foot traffic only, unless posted otherwise. Each property will have special restrictions for dates allowed and type of hunt that will be listed on the application.
For more information on the program or applications, write Jake George, Private Lands Coordinator, KDWP, 512 SE 25th Ave., Pratt, KS 67124; phone 620-672-5911, ext. 160; or email jakeg@wp.state.ks.us.