April 8, 2004

Young Hunters Get Head Start On 2004 Spring Turkey Season

Missouri youths will get a head start on the spring turkey season with a special youth only hunt scheduled for April 10-11.

The youth must be a Missouri resident and must be 15 years of age or younger by the opening day of the season.

The young hunters have three options for the season. A Youth Deer and Turkey Hunting Permit is available for hunters between the ages of 6-15. This permit does not require the youth to have completed the MDC’s hunter safety certification. However the youth must be in the immediate presence of a properly licensed adult who has a valid hunter education certificate card.

Kids between the age of 11-15 that have completed the hunter safety course may also hunt during the youth season using a normal Resident Spring Turkey Season permit.

Residents age 15 or younger who are the immediate household members of qualifying resident landowners may take a turkey on the landowner’s property during the youth-only spring season without purchasing any permit, but they must abide by season dates, methods, limits and tagging/checking procedures.

Only one male turkey or turkey with a visible beard may be taken by each hunter during the two-day youth season.

Youths who take a turkey on a Youth Deer & Turkey Hunting Permit may not also harvest another bird during the regular spring turkey season.

Youths who take a turkey on a Resident Spring Turkey Hunting Permit may harvest a second bird, but not until the beginning of the second week of the regular season. This is because the bird taken during the youth-only season counts as the first bird for the first week of the regular season.

The Youth Deer & Turkey Hunting Permit, $17, is available to all youths age 6 through 15. During the permit year, it allows resident youths to take one male turkey or turkey with visible beard during either the youth-only spring turkey season or the regular spring turkey season, and also one turkey of either sex during the fall firearms turkey season. Nonresident youths may participate in the regular spring and fall turkey seasons, but not the youth-only spring season. The permit also is valid for one deer during the fall firearms deer season. Youths hunting with this permit are not required to be hunter education certified; however, they must be in the immediate presence of a properly licensed adult who has a valid hunter education certificate card.

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