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Youth wild turkey harvest numbers up; local boy celebrates quick success

Many young hunters found success during Ohio’s 2013 youth spring wild turkey season after 1,784 birds were harvested, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR).

Lucas Yoesting (pictured) of rural Zanesfield harvested his first turkey 30 minutes after the youth hunt began Saturday morning.

Hunters age 17 and under were eligible to participate in the two-day season Saturday and Sunday. The total harvest was a 9 percent increase from 2012, when 1,632 wild turkeys were checked.

The counties that reported the most checked wild turkeys during the 2013 youth spring season were: Monroe (56), Muskingum (54), Ashtabula (52), Jefferson (52), Coshocton (51), Belmont (49), Knox (48), Guernsey (48), Tuscarawas (48) and Washington (47).

All participants were required to possess a valid Ohio youth hunting license and youth spring turkey permit, and must have been accompanied by a non-hunting adult. The youth turkey season was open statewide with the exception of Lake La Su An State Wildlife Area in Williams County, which required a special hunting permit.

The youth spring turkey season is one of four special youth-only hunting seasons designed by the ODNR Division of Wildlife to offer a safe and productive early hunting experience for young hunters. Special seasons are also set aside for upland game, white-tailed deer, and waterfowl hunting opportunities.

The spring turkey season begins today and closes Sunday, May 19. The spring turkey season is open statewide except for Lake La Su An Wildlife Area. Find more information in the 2012-2013 Ohio Hunting and Trapping Regulations, available where licenses are sold, and at wildohio.com.

Ohio’s first modern day wild turkey season opened in 1966 in nine counties, and hunters checked 12 birds. The total number of harvested turkeys topped 1,000 for the first time in 1984. Turkey hunting was opened statewide in 2000.

Watch Governor John Kasich and ODNR Director James Zehringer share a message to hunters for the start of wild turkey season here: http://bit.ly/WildTurkeyHuntingWelcome/.

Here is a list of all wild turkeys checked by hunters during the 2013 two-day youth spring hunting season is shown below. The first number following the county’s name shows the harvest numbers for 2013, and the 2012 numbers are in parentheses.

Adams: 42 (30); Allen: 6 (7); Ashland: 30 (22); Ashtabula: 52 (73); Athens: 32 (23); Auglaize: 2 (2); Belmont: 49 (30); Brown: 38 (34); Butler: 19 (21); Carroll: 34 (49); Champaign: 9 (7); Clark: 1 (3); Clermont: 28 (24); Clinton: 9 (10); Columbiana: 42 (38); Coshocton: 51 (29); Crawford: 8 (9); Cuyahoga: 0 (0); Darke: 12 (11); Defiance: 21 (22); Delaware: 14 (12); Erie: 7 (6); Fairfield: 4 (9); Fayette: 1 (0); Franklin: 1 (1); Fulton: 13 (13); Gallia: 29 (36); Geauga: 22 (20); Greene: 3 (2); Guernsey: 48 (31); Hamilton: 7 (4); Hancock: 5 (1); Hardin: 8 (6); Harrison: 42 (41); Henry: 4 (0); Highland: 32 (48); Hocking: 23 (24); Holmes: 37 (23); Huron: 23 (23); Jackson: 39 (42); Jefferson: 52 (28); Knox: 48 (39); Lake: 4 (5); Lawrence: 23 (21); Licking: 36 (31); Logan: 16 (9); Lorain: 11 (11); Lucas: 6 (5); Madison: 0 (0); Mahoning: 16 (23); Marion: 4 (4); Medina: 9 (11); Meigs: 44 (36); Mercer: 1 (4); Miami: 1 (1); Monroe: 56 (49); Montgomery: 0 (1); Morgan: 36 (34); Morrow: 27 (23); Muskingum: 54 (60); Noble: 28 (37); Ottawa: 0 (0); Paulding: 6 (14); Perry: 34 (25); Pickaway: 3 (3); Pike: 19 (14); Portage: 24 (21); Preble: 6 (6); Putnam: 8 (6); Richland: 38 (31); Ross: 34 (18); Sandusky: 3 (2); Scioto: 12 (16); Seneca: 19 (18); Shelby: 4 (4); Stark: 22 (17); Summit: 3 (2); Trumbull: 43 (39); Tuscarawas: 48 (53); Union: 3 (2); Van Wert: 2 (3); Vinton: 28 (26); Warren: 6 (6); Washington: 47 (46); Wayne: 18 (13); Williams: 21 (22); Wood: 2 (1); Wyandot: 12 (6). Total: 1,784 (1,632).

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