DEM encourages the public to report sightings of wild turkeys

DEM encourages the public to report sightings of wild turkeys

The Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management is seeking the public’s help in reporting sightings of wild turkey hens, both with brood and without.

PROVIDENCE – The Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management is asking the public to report sightings of wild turkey hens, both with brood and without, to help with research efforts.

The department is currently evaluating the state’s wild turkey population, which is believed to be growing. This is based on the number of young turkeys reaching maturity, and an increase in harvests reported during the spring hunting season, which ended last month. The spring harvest included 190 birds, an increase of more than 20 percent from the 154 in 2017.

Information gathered from the public is helpful in determining the number of young birds that survive after common causes of mortality such as predators, weather, and road kill. The division receives hundreds of brood reports annually that assist biologists with monitoring recruitment, population dynamics, and distribution of the wild turkey flock in Rhode Island.

DEM is actively working to protect and enhance wildlife habitat in Rhode Island forests. The public is encouraged to report sightings via a brief online survey. For those that do not have internet access, brood reports can be made by calling the Division of Fish and Wildlife at 401-789-0281.

For more turkey facts, visit www.dem.ri.gov. Visit the Facebook page at www.facebook.com/RhodeIslandDEM or on Twitter (@RhodeIslandDEM) for timely updates.