Turkey hunting clinic happens April 1
Iron County — Young people and novice hunters can learn how to hunt wild turkeys, receive free raffle tickets and leave with free door prizes at the third annual Southern Region Turkey Hunting Clinic.
Heather Talley says the April 1 clinic is open to anyone 17 years of age and younger. It’s also open to adults who have never hunted turkeys before. If you attend, you’ll walk away with a basic understanding of how to hunt turkeys, as well as prizes supplied by The National Wild Turkey Federation (NWTF).
“You don’t need to bring anything—just enthusiasm for learning how to hunt turkeys,” says Talley, regional wildlife recreation specialist for the Division of Wildlife Resources.
Talley says several experienced turkey hunters will teach the clinic. “Having a variety of experts teach the clinic means you’ll learn a range of techniques that can increase your hunting success,” she says. “You’ll also gain different perspectives about what it’s like to hunt turkeys.”
The free clinic will be held April 1 at the Parowan Front Wildlife Management Area. The WMA is just east of Summit in Iron County. To reach Summit, exit Interstate 15 at the first exit north of Cedar City.
“The rotations between stations will end around noon,” Talley says. “After each group of participants has visited each station, a question-and-answer session will begin. A raffle will follow the Q&A session. After the raffle, a special event called Jake’s Day will start.”
The DWR and NWTF have teamed up to offer the free Jake’s Day event. At the event, you can shoot bows and arrows and visit the NWTF’s shooting trailer and the DWR’s poaching trailer.
Young people and wild turkeys
Those who organized the event say getting more young people involved in turkey hunting is important to the future of wild turkey conservation in Utah.
“Many of us were introduced to hunting at an early age, because our families had established a hunting tradition,” says Ron MacIntosh, Cedar City Chapter president for the NWTF. “As sportsmen and women, it’s our job to help educate the youth and mentor new hunters. They’re the future.”
MacIntosh says Jakes Days are perfect for youth.
“JAKES stands for Juniors Acquiring Knowledge, Ethics and Sportsmanship,” he says. “The title conveys the dedication the NWTF has to educating another generation of smart, ethical hunters.”
DWR Biologist Jason Nicholes says hunting turkeys is a great way to spend time with your family in Utah’s backcountry in the spring. “Learning about turkey habits and about their habitat is the best way to be successful as you start your new adventure,” he says.
Talley says wild turkeys are doing really well in many parts of Southwestern Utah. This has allowed DWR biologists to take turkeys from dense populations and place them in areas in Southwestern Utah where there’s room for more birds.