Wild turkeys are abundant around rural and urban areas in Wisconsin. Farm fields and neighborhoods in Door and Kewaunee counties are no exception. The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources says the birds are thriving because of wide-open grassy areas in and around farms, where livestock feed may also be nearby. The availability of pet food outdoors, bird feeders and gardens have some flocking to neighborhoods in cities and towns. Those conditions can cause conflicts between farmers and city residents alike when the birds feed and damage property. DNR Wildlife Biologist Josh Martinez says there are no special hunting seasons planned to reduce the wild turkey population. He says the best first step is to make your property less attractive to the birds. From there, Martinez says farmers and communities can take more drastic measures.
Property owners in more populated areas can also remove nuisance birds by bow hunting. Martinez says to check community ordinances first and, if necessary, with your neighbors.
Martinez also recommends obstructing reflective windows as much as possible. Those can agitate tom turkeys into thinking their reflections are rival toms that are invading their territories.
(Photo courtesy of Wisconsin DNR)