KDWPT working to combat declining turkey numbers in state
PRATT - Wild turkey populations are declining across the Midwest and Kansas isn’t immune.
Though the Sunflower State still boasts one of the strongest wild turkey populations in the region, statewide surveys suggest immediate action is needed if Kansas is to have any measurable impact on slowing the decline.
Leading the charge is Kent Fricke, small game coordinator for the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism (KDWPT). Fricke, who chairs the Department’s Wild Turkey Committee, has presented on the matter to the Kansas Wildlife, Parks and Tourism Commission since June 2019.
“Our primary concern is declining nest and brood survival rates, which are influenced by habitat availability and weather,” said Fricke. “In recent years, we’ve observed declines in both habitat quantity and quality, as well as significant weather events that have negatively impacted nesting and brood rearing seasons. Collectively, these factors are likely contributing to turkey declines.”
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