Much of the Rio Grande wild turkey range in Texas experienced two great years of turkey production and recruitment in 2019 and 2020, and this means that hunters this spring season can expect to see many jakes and two-year-old gobblers across most of the Rio Grande range.
“Those jakes will also keep things interesting this spring with big groups of young males roaming the turkey woods,” said Jason Hardin, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) Wild Turkey Program Leader. “East Texas will see a slight bump in jakes as well with fair production and recruitment this past summer. If you had birds in 2020, you can expect to see them again this spring.”
The spring season dates are as follows:
- Rio Grande — North Zone — Mar. 27 — 28, 2021; May 22 — 23, 2021
- Rio Grande — South Zone -Mar. 13 — 14, 2021; May 8 — 9, 2021
Spring Regular Season
- Rio Grande – North Zone — Apr. 3 — May 16, 2021
- Rio Grande – South Zone — Mar. 20 — May 2, 2021
- Rio Grande – Special 1 Turkey Bag Limit — Apr. 1 — 30, 2021
- Eastern Turkey — Apr. 22 — May 14, 2021
No more than one gobbler may be harvested annually per county in the Western One-Gobbler Zone. Those counties in the Western One-Gobbler Only Zone include Bastrop, Caldwell, Colorado, Fayette, Jackson, Lavaca, Lee, Matagorda, Milam, and Wharton.
Hunters are required to report harvest of Eastern wild turkeys electronically to TPWD within 24 hours of harvest. Reports can be made through the My Texas Hunt Harvest App. Hunters still must tag harvested birds. Additional information about harvest reporting, bag limits, and more can be found in the Outdoor Annual. Hunters can access the Outdoor Annual online or via the Outdoor Annual app. Both apps are available for free download from Google Play or the App Store.
The My Texas Hunt Harvest App can also be used as a tool for voluntarily reporting and tracking harvests of other resident game species, including Rio Grande turkey. With My Texas Hunt Harvest, hunters can log harvested game animals and view harvest history, including dates and locations of every hunt.