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Wild Turkey Plan

tom turkey

A tom on the south fork of the John Day River
-Photo by Mark Kirsch-

2018 FINAL DRAFT Oregon Wild Turkey Plan (pdf)


Oregon was one of 9 lower 48 contiguous states without a native population of turkeys. Through trapping of wild birds in other states and relocating them to Oregon, the Merriam’s subspecies was first successfully introduced in 1961 and the Rio Grande subspecies was established in 1975. The Rio Grande subspecies proved to be very adaptable and are now found in suitable habitat in eastern and western Oregon. With the expansion of turkey populations, turkeys became a popular game bird offering opportunities in spring and fall. Many Oregonians also enjoy viewing these large fascinating birds. With the expansion of the turkey populations it became necessary to develop guidelines for their management with through the adoption of Oregon’s first Wild Turkey Management Plan in 2004. Though the Plan has served us well, it is time for the Plan to be updated.

ODFW drafted an update to the 2004 Plan in 2017, but staff changes delayed adoption until 2018. Public and stakeholders may still provide comment on the proposed changes. Primary changes in the updated Draft Oregon Wild Turkey Management Plan include:

  • More attention on turkeys causing nuisance and damage issues, particularly in western Oregon
  • Removed separate treatment of the Merriam’s subspecies of turkeys since Oregon has few, if any, pure Merriam’s turkeys remaining in Oregon.
  • Revised trap and transplant guidelines for logistic efficiency
  • Aligned disease testing protocols with draft Avian Translocation Guidelines
  • Referenced more than 40 additional papers about wild turkeys; most were published since the first Plan was adopted 2004.

Draft schedule for updating Oregon’s Wild Turkey Management Plan:

  • Seek stakeholder and public comment (Summer 2018)
  • Consider stakeholder and public comment
  • Present to Commission for proposed adoption (December 2018)

Comments on the Draft Wild Turkey Plan may be sent to: Mikal Cline at


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