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HateHumminbird

Snow And Turkeys

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Alot of folks I’ve been talking to are concerned about the recent glut of snow we’ve been having, in regard to the turkey populations. Such talk is alarmist in my opinion, as I’ve seen them doing well the past few days. Don’t get me wrong, they’ve been seeming to stay quite near roost locations, and are soaking up the March sun when they can, but a few short weeks of this before it melts off shouldn’t harm them too badly.

Snow is hard on them, but I’m optimistic that a month or less of it will hardly be something to fret.

The last winter that seemed to have a very noticeable impact on turkey populations was '96-97, when snows were deeper for much longer in most of SE MN. Coyote hunters in the area found several carcasses and were finding good numbers of predators near traditional roosting/feeding locations.

What are your thoughts on the effect of these snowstorms?

Joel

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I'll speak only for the Northfield/Cannon Falls area because some areas may have been hit much harder. I have several flocks of turkeys that I watch on pretty much a daily basis, and all those groups seem to be coping extremely well with the snow. In fact, it really hasn't changed their routines much from before the recent storms. Had this happened earlier in the winter and been followed by an extended cold spell, it may have been a different story. But with the temps listed in the forcasts, this snow cover is going to have a very minimal effect.

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Maybe some concern in non-ag areas but otherwise no problem. Saw a flock of 15 longbeards yesterday and another with 11 jakes. If anything, they are more prone to road kill with deep snow - a big flock of hens had traffic backed up on Hwy 37 south of Eau Claire yesterday. They were coming right down a driveway then flying over the road because there was a guard rail on the opposite side. Wonder if there was a little cacklin going on with the short flights! Love to hear those short cackles like when they cross a small creek.

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Many of those cool, wet springs we have had on and off over the past 6 springs had more impact on the turkeys than any winter.

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