The Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries reported that the 2020 spring gobbler season harvest was the second highest on record.
In total, 20,525 turkeys were killed, an increase of 14.5 percent over 2019. The highest total took place in 2015, when 20,580 birds were taken. Virginia’s spring season began on April 11 and ran through May 16.
The 2020 Youth and Apprentice weekend tally increased 40 percent from 2019 for a total of 890 birds. The opening weekend of the season represents the highest two-day period of harvest throughout the season, totaling 3,993 birds or 19.5 percent of the total harvest.
Weather, annual reproduction, mast crops, and hunter effort all have impacts on annual fluctuations in turkey harvests. Several of these factors likely led to the increased harvest for the 2020 season including fair weather conditions throughout most of the season and increased hunter participation attributed to the COVID-19 pandemic, a VDGIF release stated.
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