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The Vermont Statutes Online

Title 10 Appendix : Vermont Fish and Wildlife Regulations

Chapter 001 : GAME

Subchapter 002 : BIRDS

(Cite as: 10 App. V.S.A. § 22)
  • § 22. Turkey Seasons

    1.0 Authority

    1.1 This rule is adopted pursuant to 10 V.S.A. § 4081(a). In adopting this rule, the Fish and Wildlife Board is following the policy established by the General Assembly that the protection, propagation, control, management, and conservation of fish, wildlife and fur-bearing animals in this State is in the interest of the public welfare and that the safeguarding of this valuable resource for the people of the State requires a constant and continual vigilance.

    1.2 In accordance with 10 V.S.A. § 4082, this rule is designed to maintain the best health, population and utilization levels of the turkey flock.

    1.3 In accordance with 10 V.S.A. § 4084, this rule establishes daily, season and possession limits for game, territorial limits; to prescribe the manner and means of taking; to establish territorial limits for the taking of turkeys; and to establish restrictions on taking based upon sex, maturity or other physical distinction.

    2.0 Purpose The purpose of this regulation is to establish seasons for the taking of turkeys, to establish open Wildlife Management Units (WMUs) for the taking of turkeys, to establish methods of taking turkeys and to establish limits on the number of turkeys to be taken.

     3.0 Definitions

    3.1 "Commissioner" means the Commissioner of the Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department.

    3.2 "Crossbow" means a device consisting of a bow mounted to a rigid stock for discharging bolts or arrows and having a mechanical means to hold and release the drawn string, which must be fired from the shoulder. A bolt means a short projectile for a crossbow that resembles an arrow and has a head that measures no less than 7/8 inch at its widest point. A crossbow shall have a minimum pull of 125 pounds, a working mechanical safety and a stock no less than 23 inches in length.

    3.3 "Department" means the Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department.

    3.4 "Legal means" means the taking of a turkey by shotgun, crossbow, or archery equipment in conformance with Section 6 of this rule.

    3.5 "Permit" means a document issued by the Department authorizing the taking of a turkey.

    3.6 "Wildlife Management Unit" (WMU) means one of 21 geographical areas in Vermont for which big game regulations may vary.

     4.0 Spring Season

    4.1 Dates: May 1, through May 31, inclusive.

    4.2 Shooting hours: One-half hour before sunrise to twelve noon.

    4.3 Legal turkey: Only wild turkeys with beard(s).

    4.4 Bag Limit: Two bearded wild turkeys per person per season.

    4.5 Open WMUs: Open statewide

    5.0 Fall Season.

    5.1 Dates and Open WMU's.

    (a) Bow and Arrow, and crossbow only:

    i. Dates: From the 1st Saturday in October to the beginning of the shotgun/bow and arrow/crossbow season.

    ii. Open WMUs: Open Statewide

    (b) Shotgun/Bow & Arrow/Crossbow Season

    i. Dates: Nine consecutive days beginning 21 days prior to the regular deer season, inclusive.

    ii. Open WMUs: B, D, G, H, I, J, L, M, O, P, and Q and their respective subunits:.

    (c) Shotgun/Bow & Arrow/Crossbow Season

    i. Dates: For 16 consecutive days beginning 21 days prior to the regular deer season, inclusive.

    ii. Open WMUs: subunits: WMUs F, K, and N and their respective subunits:.

    5.2 Shooting hours: One-half hour before sunrise to one-half hour after sunset.

    5.3 Legal Turkey: Any wild turkey.

    5.4 Bag limit: One turkey per person.

    6.0 Legal Method of Taking: 

    6.1 Only a shotgun, crossbow, or bow and arrow may be used. A cross bow may only be used by a hunter who is 50 years or older or has a permit in accordance with 10 V.S.A. § 4711.

    6.2 Only number 2 through number 8 shot shall be used or possessed.

    6.3 An arrowhead must be at least 7/8th of an inch in width and have two or more cutting edges.

    6.4 Rifles shall not be used or carried by any person while hunting turkeys. A person taking a turkey with a crossbow or bow and arrow may carry a handgun in accordance with 10 V.S.A. § 4252(b), however, that person may not use the handgun to take turkey.

    6.5 No person shall use dogs in the spring, nor electronic calling devices, bait, live decoys, or participate in cooperative drives during either season.

    6.6 Any person wishing to hunt turkey with a crossbow or bow and arrow must hold proof of having held an archery license or a certificate of satisfactory completion of a bowhunter education course from Vermont or another state or province of Canada which is approved by the Commissioner.

    6.7 Unless it is uncocked, a person shall not possess or transport a crossbow in or on a motor vehicle, motorboat, airplane, snowmobile, or other motor-propelled vehicle except as permitted in accordance with 10 V.S.A. § 4705.

    7.0 Youth Turkey Hunting Weekend

    7.1 Youth turkey hunting weekend shall be the Saturday and Sunday prior to opening day of spring turkey season on May 1.

    7.2 Legal Turkey: Only bearded turkeys may be taken.

    7.3 Bag limit: One bearded turkey per youth. A youth may also hunt during the spring season and take two bearded turkeys during that season.

    7.4 Season: One half hour before sunrise until 5 p.m.  (Added 1982, Fish and Game Board Reg. No. 938, §§ 1-3, eff. Jan. 1, 1983; amended 1983, No. 158 (Adj. Sess.), eff. April 13, 1984; 1985, Fish and Wildlife Board Reg. No. 956, eff. March 7, 1985; 1985, Fish and Wildlife Board Reg. No. 957, eff. July 5, 1985; 1987, Fish and Wildlife Board Reg. No. 957, eff. Jan. 1, 1987; 1988, Fish and Wildlife Board Reg. No. 974, eff. April 12, 1988; 1990, Fish and Wildlife Board Reg. No. 981, eff. April 27, 1990; 1992, Fish and Wildlife Board Reg. No. 981, eff. November 14, 1992; 1993, Fish and Wildlife Board Reg. No. 996, eff. April 22, 1993; 1993, Fish and Wildlife Board Reg. No. in subsec. (E) 1007, eff. Feb. 13, 1994; 1998, Fish and Wildlife Board Reg. No. 1007, eff. April 3, 1998; 1999, Fish and Wildlife Board Reg. No. 1007, eff. Feb. 17, 1999; 2002, Fish and Wildlife Board Reg. No. 1007, eff. Aug. 3, 2002; 2003, Fish and Wildlife Board Reg. No. 1007a, eff. Feb. 12, 2003, 2003, Fish and Wildlife Board Reg. No. 1007, eff. March 5, 2004, 2010, Fish and Wildlife Board Reg. eff. July 9, 2010; 2015, Fish and Wildlife Board Reg. eff. Jan. 1, 2016; 2016, Fish and Wildlife Board Reg. eff. Jan. 1, 2017.)