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New York



Turkey Hunting

General Regulations

  • You may buy only one turkey permit per year, which includes three carcass tags, two for spring and one for fall.
  • If you have filled your bag limit, you may call turkeys for another hunter, but you may not carry a bow, crossbow, or firearm. You may call turkeys to aid another hunter only if you are licensed to hunt wild turkey in New York and have a valid turkey permit.
  • If you have taken a turkey that is unfit for consumption, authorized DEC staff may issue a special permit to take another. You will have to surrender the carcass. Call your wildlife or law enforcement office (see Important Numbers).

Manner of Taking

  • You must carry your hunting license and turkey permit while you hunt.
  • You may hunt with a bow or crossbow; however, crossbows may only be used by hunters 14 or older and may not be used to take wild turkeys in Westchester or Suffolk counties.
  • You may hunt with a shotgun or handgun only when using shot no larger than #2 and no smaller than #9.
  • You may not take a turkey with a rifle or air gun, or with a handgun firing a bullet.
  • You may use a muzzleloading shotgun.
  • You may not hunt with a dog during the spring season. You may hunt with a dog during the fall season.
  • You may not use bait to hunt turkey.
  • You may not use an electronic calling or amplifying device to locate or hunt turkeys during the open season.
  • You may use decoys. You may not use a live decoy when turkey hunting.
  • A scope of any type is allowed.

Tagging, Possession, and Reporting

  • Immediately after taking a wild turkey, you must fill out the appropriate carcass tag in ink, mark or cut out the date and month of kill, sign the back, and attach it to the carcass.
  • The carcass tag must stay attached to the turkey carcass until it is prepared for eating.
  • You may give your turkey to another person.
  • You must attach a tag with the following information to the turkey carcass:
    • Your name
    • Your address
    • Your hunting license number
    • Turkey permit carcass tag number
    • The recipient’s name
    • The recipient’s address
  • You must report your harvest within 7 days via phone (1-866-GAMERPT), online (, or through our HuntFishNY mobile app.

Turkey Hunting Tips

Successful turkey hunters sit and call.

Don’t wear red, white, blue, or black.

Most turkey hunting injuries happen when one hunter stalks another hunter.


Assume anything that sounds like a
turkey is a human (calls, footsteps).

If you see another hunter:

  • Don’t move, wave, or nod.
  • Don’t make turkey or animal sounds.
  • Do speak up clearly, saying “STOP.”

If you see a turkey:
Be 100% sure of your target and beyond. To prevent another hunter from mistaking you for a gobbler, avoid using a turkey reaper fan.


Protect wild turkeys against illegal hunting. Their future depends on you!

The National Wild Turkey Federation is offering a $200 reward to anyone giving information and testimony leading to the arrest and conviction of anyone illegally hunting or killing a wild turkey in New York State. 1-844-DEC-ECOS