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April 18, 2013

Youth Hunters Bag 3,915 Turkeys During Special Season

Jessie Holt made a huge harvest on Sunday, April 7th. The youth hunter's bird tipped the scales at 30 pounds. The double-bearded gobbler measured at 10 1/2 and 8 1/2 inches long and had spurs that cleared 1 1/2 inches. Jessie was guided by Jamie Holt and Matt Small of Hickory Hills Hunt Club.

As their older counterparts took to the woods on Monday to start the 2013 spring turkey hunting season, youth hunters received the report that youngsters under the age of 15 had bagged nearly 4,000 birds during the special youth season held across Missouri April 6th and 7th.

According to the Missouri Department of Conservation young hunters ages 6 to 15 years harvested 3,915 turkeys during Missouri's 2013 youth spring turkey hunting weekend. The total included 2,933 adult gobblers, 72 bearded hens, and 910 juvenile gobblers.

Top harvest counties were Franklin with 106 birds checked, Greene with 77 and Callaway with 76.

Scotland County youth hunters checked in 37 adult gobblers and three jakes for a total of 40 birds which was best in the area. That compared to harvest totals of 30 in Clark County, 28 in Adair County, 20 in Knox County and 16 in Schuyler County.

In 2012, young hunters harvested 4,319 turkeys during the youth season with top harvest counties being Franklin with 119 turkeys checked, Osage with 93 and Callaway with 81. The 2011 total was 3,898. Youth had their first separate spring turkey hunt in 2001 with a total harvest of 2,530 birds.

The 2013 regular spring turkey season runs April 15 through May 5. Local hunters had promising weather to start the year, as overnight rains subsided Monday morning allowing hunters to kickoff the 2013 with warmer, dryer conditions.

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