Pennsylvania Hunting & Trapping Digest 2014-2015 - 57

high populations have areas with few turkeys. Regardless,
unit-scale management is the best way to maintain long-term
hunting opportunities at levels populations can sustain.
Some changes are coming for this fall's seasons. In
WMUs 3A, 3B and 3C, where populations have declined
substantially in recent years, the first segment of the fall
season has been shortened from three weeks to two to help
the population recover. The second segment (three-day
Thanksgiving season) in these WMUs remains unchanged. In
WMU 5A, which had a three-day midweek season from 2009
to 2013, the three-day season length will continue, but will
now be Thursday through Saturday. Including the Saturday
should increase hunter opportunity and satisfaction, and we
believe the turkey population has recovered sufficiently to
absorb a minor increase in harvest.
Participation fluctuates between 214,000 and 230,000
hunters in our spring season, and harvests fluctuate between
33,000 and 45,000 (34,158 estimated in 2013). Spring harvests fluctuate substantially, depending on the adult gobbler
population, because hunters overwhelmingly select adult
gobblers over juveniles (jakes), three to one. Pennsylvania
Joe Kosack
continues to consistently exhibit the highest spring harvest
among Northeast states (10-year average of 38,500), followed by New York (28,300) and Virginia (19,300).
The 2015 spring season is May 2 through 30 (youth
day on April 25). This follows the guideline in our turkey management plan to open the regular spring season on
the Saturday closest to May 1, which is the average peak of nest incubation. Hunting before this date increases
greatly the risk of hen mortality and disturbance, resulting in decreased reproduction and consequently declining populations. The date of peak nest incubation has not changed over several decades, even though vegetation
green-up and gobbling behavior may be occurring earlier. Recent research also shows the date varies by only a
day or two at most between the northern- and southern-tier counties.
Hunters will continue to enjoy all-day hunting during the second half of the season (May 18-30, 2015).
Over the first three years of all-day hunting, afternoon harvests have accounted for about 5 percent of the overall
spring harvest and 20 percent of the harvest during the all-day portion of the season.
Since 2006, hunters could take a second gobbler with the purchase of a special license. Sales of second tags
have risen from about 7,000 to 8,000 the first few years to a record high of 16,505 in 2013. However, success
rates on the second tag have decreased, so the number of birds actually taken with second licenses has increased
only slightly. We believe the sales increase is caused by the increased availability of the license.
On a final note, our research on hen harvest and mortality will continue. Eight WMUs are part of this
study. If you harvest a banded turkey, please report it by calling the toll-free number inscribed on the leg band.

Lyme Disease Awareness
Editor Joe Kosack provides some thoughts on staying Lyme Disease-free

M

OST Pennsylvania hunters are familiar with Lyme Disease, which is transmitted to humans through the
bite of the deer tick, also now commonly referred to as the blacklegged tick. The disease is caused by the
bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi and its early symptoms can include a bull's-eye rash around a bite site (occurs
70 to 80 percent of time), and flu-like signs such as fever, headache, fatigue and swollen lymph nodes. Doctors
have become better at diagnosing Lyme in recent years, and when detected early, it can be treated with antibiotics.
Left untreated, the disease can spread to your joints, heart, and nervous system. Some classic signs of untreated
Lyme can include migratory pain or arthritis, impaired motor and sensory skills and an enlarged heart.

2014-15 PA Hunting & Trapping Digest

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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Pennsylvania Hunting & Trapping Digest 2014-2015

Pennsylvania Hunting & Trapping Digest 2014-2015 - Intro
Pennsylvania Hunting & Trapping Digest 2014-2015 - Cover1
Pennsylvania Hunting & Trapping Digest 2014-2015 - Cover2
Pennsylvania Hunting & Trapping Digest 2014-2015 - 3
Pennsylvania Hunting & Trapping Digest 2014-2015 - 4
Pennsylvania Hunting & Trapping Digest 2014-2015 - 5
Pennsylvania Hunting & Trapping Digest 2014-2015 - 6
Pennsylvania Hunting & Trapping Digest 2014-2015 - 7
Pennsylvania Hunting & Trapping Digest 2014-2015 - 8
Pennsylvania Hunting & Trapping Digest 2014-2015 - 9
Pennsylvania Hunting & Trapping Digest 2014-2015 - 10
Pennsylvania Hunting & Trapping Digest 2014-2015 - 11
Pennsylvania Hunting & Trapping Digest 2014-2015 - 12
Pennsylvania Hunting & Trapping Digest 2014-2015 - 13
Pennsylvania Hunting & Trapping Digest 2014-2015 - 14
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Pennsylvania Hunting & Trapping Digest 2014-2015 - 17
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Pennsylvania Hunting & Trapping Digest 2014-2015 - 19
Pennsylvania Hunting & Trapping Digest 2014-2015 - 20
Pennsylvania Hunting & Trapping Digest 2014-2015 - 21
Pennsylvania Hunting & Trapping Digest 2014-2015 - 22
Pennsylvania Hunting & Trapping Digest 2014-2015 - 23
Pennsylvania Hunting & Trapping Digest 2014-2015 - 24
Pennsylvania Hunting & Trapping Digest 2014-2015 - 25
Pennsylvania Hunting & Trapping Digest 2014-2015 - 26
Pennsylvania Hunting & Trapping Digest 2014-2015 - 27
Pennsylvania Hunting & Trapping Digest 2014-2015 - 28
Pennsylvania Hunting & Trapping Digest 2014-2015 - 29
Pennsylvania Hunting & Trapping Digest 2014-2015 - 30
Pennsylvania Hunting & Trapping Digest 2014-2015 - 31
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Pennsylvania Hunting & Trapping Digest 2014-2015 - Cover3
Pennsylvania Hunting & Trapping Digest 2014-2015 - Cover4
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