Proposed Changes Would
Expand Hunting Opportunities
New York State Department of
Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Basil Seggos
today announced proposed changes to wild turkey hunting regulations,
giving hunters additional turkey hunting opportunities. The proposal, if
enacted, would not be in place until later this year and among other
changes, establishes a spring turkey season in Suffolk County in 2023,
with a season limit of one bearded bird.
"Wild turkey restoration
is one of the greatest success stories of modern wildlife
Seggos said. "In New
York, DEC's management and protection of wild turkeys has allowed the
birds to maintain self-sustaining populations in all suitable habitats of
the state. This regulation change would expand hunting downstate,
ensuring New York remains a premiere destination for turkey hunters in
The existence of wild turkeys
on Long Island is a relatively recent phenomenon, with populations
growing to more than 3,000 birds. The first turkey hunting season on Long
Island was a five-day fall season in 2009 with a one-bird bag limit.
After DEC established this season and, later, a two-day youth-only spring
season, turkey populations in the area continued to increase. Their
populations can now support additional hunting opportunities in the form
of a spring season from May 1 through May 31 with a bag limit of one
If adopted as proposed, a
spring season would occur in 2023 in Suffolk County.
In addition, another proposal
scheduled to take effect this fall, would change the minimum shot size
from #8 to #9 for turkey hunting statewide, to account for advances in
shotshell technology. Previously, shot sizes smaller than #8 were
prohibited because they lacked the kinetic energy downrange to humanely
harvest a turkey. Recent advances in shotshell technology use heavier
metals such as tungsten alloy, tungsten-iron, or bismuth. These heavier
shot types, sometimes referred to as "Tungsten Super Shot" or
"TSS," maintain enough energy to humanely harvest a turkey. In
terms of kinetic energy, #9 tungsten can have the same weight as #5 lead
shot and achieve a higher pellet count.
DEC welcomes public comment
on these regulatory proposals through June 5, 2022. Please send comments
by email to email@example.com with
"Proposed Turkey Regulations" in the subject line or by mail to
Joshua Stiller, NYSDEC, 625 Broadway, Albany, NY 12233-4754.
For more information, visit
the DEC proposed regulations page.