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Iowa

Hunting

Turkey Hunting Regulations

FALL WILD TURKEY HUNTING

NONRESIDENTS are not eligible for fall turkey hunting licenses.

TAGGING REQUIREMENTS

The leg that bears the tag must be attached to the carcass of any wild turkey being transported within the state during any wild turkey hunting season and the tag must remain attached to the carcass until it is processed for consumption.

HARVEST REPORTING

All hunters who shoot a turkey must report the harvest through the DNR’s Harvest
Reporting System. Hunters who do not shoot
a turkey do not need to report.

FALL TURKEY LICENSES

Paid Combination Gun/Bow Licenses are valid only in the zone selected by the hunter when the license is purchased. Paid Gun/Bow Licenses are sold first-come first-served until the zone quotas are filled or the end of the season, whichever comes first.

Paid Archery-only Licenses are valid statewide. There are no quotas and licenses are sold until the end of the season.

Landowner-Tenant Gun/Bow & Landowner-Tenant Archery-only Licenses for eligible landowners and tenants or their family members are issued until the end of the respective season. Only one Landowner-Tenant Turkey License may be obtained per landowner family and one per tenant family. Landowner-Tenant Licenses are valid only on the farm unit of the landowner or tenant.

HOW MANY TURKEY LICENSES MAY I HAVE?

A resident hunter may obtain a maximum of two fall turkey hunting licenses: two Combination Gun/Bow Licenses, or two Archery-only Licenses, or one Combination Gun/Bow License and one Archery-only License. One of these licenses may be a Landowner-Tenant License if the hunter is eligible.

SHOOTING HOURS

Gun: Half-hour before sunrise to sunset.

Bow: Half-hour before sunrise to half-hour after sunset.

USE OF DOGS FALL SEASON ONLY

Dogs may be used to locate, flush and retrieve wild turkeys as long as the hunter has a valid wild turkey license with an unfilled transportation tag in his or her possession.

RESIDENT SPRING TURKEY HUNTING

TAGGING REQUIREMENTS

The leg that bears the tag must be attached to the carcass of any wild turkey being transported within the state during any wild turkey hunting season and the tag must remain attached to the carcass until it is processed for consumption.

HARVEST REPORTING

All hunters who shoot a turkey must report the harvest through the DNR’s Harvest Reporting System. Hunters who do not shoot a turkey do not report.

RESIDENT SPRING TURKEY LICENSES

Paid Combination Gun/Bow Licenses are valid statewide in the season selected by the hunter at the time of purchase. Paid Gun/Bow Licenses are sold until the end of the season selected at the time of purchase.

Paid Archery-only Licenses are valid statewide for all four seasons. There are no quotas and licenses are sold until the end of the fourth season.

Landowner-Tenant Gun/Bow licenses and Landowner-Tenant Archery-only Licenses for eligible landowners and tenants

or their family members are sold until the end of the season selected at the time the license was purchased.

The following restrictions apply: Landowner-Tenant Gun/Bow Licenses are valid in the season selected by the hunter at the time
of purchase. Landowner-Tenant Archery-

only Licenses are valid in all four seasons. Landowner-Tenant Licenses are valid only on the farm unit of the landowner or tenant. One Landowner-Tenant Turkey License may be obtained per landowner farm unit and one per tenant farm unit.

HOW MANY TURKEY LICENSES MAY I HAVE?

A resident hunter may obtain a maximum of two spring turkey hunting licenses. One of these may be a Landowner-Tenant License, if the hunter is eligible.

License choices: two Archery-only (or) one Archery-only and one Combination Gun/Bow Season 4 (or) two Combination Gun/Bow of which at least one must be Season 4.

LEGAL METHOD OF TAKE SPRING & FALL

RESIDENT ARCHERY-ONLY LICENSE

Longbows, recurve bows, and compound bows are permitted. No explosive or chemical devices may be attached to the arrow or broadhead. Blunthead arrows with a minimum diameter of 9/16-inch may also be used. Arrows must be at least 18 inches long.

Crossbows are not legal, except that a physically handicapped person incapable of shooting a bow may obtain a permit from the DNR to use a crossbow Applications are available at www.iowadnr.gov/hunting - click on “Licenses and Laws” or call the DNR at 515-725-8200.

RESIDENT GUN/BOW LICENSE

Archery equipment as defined, and 10-, 12-, 16- and 20-gauge shotguns or muzzleloading shotguns shooting number 4 through 8 lead or nontoxic shot. Hunters may not have shot sizes other than those listed above on their person while hunting turkeys. Muzzleloading rifles may not be used to hunt turkeys.

YOUTH TURKEY HUNTING SEASON (RESIDENTS ONLY)

Hunters younger than 16 years old on the day they purchase a license may participate in the Youth Turkey Season. The Youth Wild Turkey License will be a Combination Gun/ Bow License valid statewide. The youth does not have to have a Hunting License or have completed a hunter education course in order to participate. A Youth Season License is valid for the Youth Season or if unfilled may be used in any other spring season.

Youth hunters must be under the direct supervision of an adult mentor while hunting during the Youth Season. The mentor must have a valid Wild Turkey License for one of the spring seasons, a valid Hunting License, and have paid the Habitat Fee if the adult is normally required to have them to hunt. The mentor must not carry a bow or firearm and must be in the direct company of the youth at all times. There may be no more than one youth with each properly licensed adult mentor. The youth and mentor must comply with all spring turkey hunting regulations.

A youth who resides with and is a member of a family of a landowner or tenant who is eligible for a Landowner-Tenant Wild Turkey Hunting License may obtain a Landowner-Tenant License for the Youth Season. The Landowner-Tenant Youth License will count as the one Landowner-Tenant Wild Turkey Hunting License the landowner or tenant family is entitled to for the spring turkey seasons.

Youth hunters may obtain one additional Gun/Bow License for Season 4, or one Archery-only License. Hunters that are eligible for the Youth Season, but choose not to

participate, may obtain two licenses for the regular spring turkey seasons like any other hunter.

PROHIBITED DEVICES & ACTIVITIES

You may not use live decoys, dogs (except in the fall), horses, phones, radios, motorized vehicles, aircraft, bait, recorded or electronically amplified turkey calls or electronically amplified imitations of turkey calls or sounds when hunting turkeys. Persons who meet one or more of the following conditions would be considered eligible for a non-ambulatory license and able to hunt from a stationary motor driven conveyance: paralyzed from the waist down; the loss or partial loss of both legs; or any other physical affliction which makes it impossible to walk from place to place successfully.

“Bait” means grain, fruit, vegetables, nuts, hay, salt, mineral blocks, or any other natural food materials, commercial products containing natural food materials, or by-products of such materials transported to or placed in an area for the purpose of attracting wildlife. Bait does not include food placed during normal agricultural activities.

HELPING OTHER HUNTERS

A resident hunter with a valid spring turkey hunting license for any season may assist other hunters in any season. A nonresident may assist other hunters only in the zone and season indicated on his or her license. The hunter doing the assisting may not carry a shotgun or bow or shoot a turkey unless he or she has a valid license and an unfilled transportation tag for that zone and season.

TAGGING REQUIREMENTS

Iowa Deer and Turkey tags consist of two portions. The lower portion of the tag is the Transportation Tag and the upper portion is the Harvest Report Tag. Each performs different functions.

TRANSPORTATION TAG

A Transportation Tag with the date of kill properly shown shall be visibly attached to the turkey immediately
or the deer within 15 minutes of the time it is located after being taken or before the carcass is moved to be transported by any means, whichever occurs first, in a manner that the tag cannot be removed without mutilating or destroying it. However, the carcass may be moved away
from an obstacle, entanglement, waterway, roadway or other
area if that location would be a
safety hazard, but only so far as necessary to avoid the hazard,
then tagged immediately before being moved to be transported.

For antlerless deer, attach the Transportation Tag to the leg as shown.

For antlered deer, attach the Transportation Tag on the main beam between two points as shown.

No person shall tag a deer with a Transportation Tag issued to another person.

Antlerless

During the youth season, disabled hunter season, bow season, early muzzleloader season and late muzzleloader season, the hunter who killed the deer must tag the deer by using the Transportation Tag issued in that person’s name.

During the first and second regular gun seasons, anyone present in the hunting party may tag a deer with a tag issued in that person’s name. Party hunting is not allowed while hunting with a youth tag, regardless of the season.

This tag shall be proof of possession and remain affixed to the carcass until the animal is processed for consumption. The head, and antlers if any, shall remain attached to the deer while being transported from the place where taken to the processor or commercial preservation facility or until the deer has been processed for consumption.

TAGGING/ REPORTING

HARVEST REPORT TAG

Transportation Tag

The Harvest Report Tag, with the confirmation number properly recorded, must be attached to the leg of the animal after reporting and before the reporting deadline (pictured below). The Harvest Report Tag must be attached so that

it is easily visible and cannot be removed without being mutilated or destroyed and remain attached to the carcass until the animal is processed for consumption.

TIPS ON TAGGING/REPORTING DEER AND TURKEYS

turkey leg. Press halves of the tag together to bond. The hunter’s name, registration number and date of harvest must be readable.

1) Remove the Transportation Tag from backing and attach to antlers if it is an antlered deer, otherwise attach to deer or

2) Follow instructions on the Harvest Report Tag to report the animal. When reporting, you will need the harvest registration number from your tag and the Iowa county where

the animal was harvested. For deer, report whether it was a doe, button buck, antlered buck, or shed-antler buck. For turkeys, report the length of the beard (fall) or length of the longest spur (spring).

3) Keep both the Transportation Tag and the Harvest Report Tag attached to the animal until it is processed for consumption.

NOTE: The actual tag may differ slightly in appearance.

Transportation Tag