NJDEP news release masthead

October 22, 2002


For more information contact:
Permit Hotline at 609-292-9192.

The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection's Division of Fish and Wildlife reminds hunters that the 2002 Fall Turkey Season is scheduled to begin Monday, October 28 and will continue through Saturday, November 2. A permit is required to participate in this season.


Permits are only available for the following Turkey Hunting Areas: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 and 10. Sales will be held weekdays ONLY from 9 a.m. to 12 noon, and from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. for as long as the supply lasts. Adults interested in purchasing an unclaimed permit must bring their 2002 hunting license along with cash or check for $21 per permit. Youth hunters must bring their youth license, hunter education certificate or previous year's youth license and cash or check for $12 per permit.

Permits will be sold on a first come, first served basis at the following Division offices: Pequest Trout Hatchery and Natural Resource Education Center (nine miles west of Hackettstown on Route 46 in Oxford, Warren County); Northern Region Office (westbound Rt. 78, take exit 13 to Rt. 173 or eastbound Rt. 78, take exit 12 to Rt. 173 in Hampton, Hunterdon County); and the Trenton Main Office (501 East State Street, Third Floor in Trenton, Mercer County).

For more information on over-the-counter turkey permit sales please call the 24-hour computerized permit hotline at 609-292-9192.


All fall turkey season permits are valid on any lands on which hunting is allowed, public or private, within each turkey hunting area. Turkey hunting areas 1-11 and 20 are open for hunting. Hunting hours are hour before sunrise to hour after sunset. Turkey hunters may take only one wild turkey of either sex per permit during the fall segment. However, hunters may only take one turkey per day regardless of the number of permits the hunter holds.

Dogs and artificial decoys may be used while turkey hunting during the fall season, however, the use of electronically-operated decoys is prohibited. All turkey hunters are required to have a calling device with them while hunting and turkeys may not be hunted by a group of hunters larger than five individuals. Driving turkeys is not permitted, however, an individual hunter may rush turkeys to cause the flock to scatter.

No shot larger than #4 fine shot or smaller than #7 fine shot may be used. Hunters may not use shotguns larger than 10 gauge or smaller than 20 gauge. Properly licensed hunters may use archery tackle for hunting turkeys. Turkeys may not be hunted within 300 feet of any baited area.

Successful turkey hunters must complete the transportation tag on their fall hunting permit immediately upon killing a turkey and must take the bird to an official wild turkey checking station by 7 p.m. on the day it is killed. The hunter who killed the bird is the only person who may transport and check the turkey.


The Wild Turkey Restoration Project represents one of the greatest wildlife management success stories in the history of the State. In the mid-1800s, turkeys had disappeared in New Jersey due to habitat changes and over-exploitation. In 1977 biologists released turkeys captured in other states and as the population grew, biologists and technicians began to live-trap and re-locate birds. Using rocket nets and drop nets, more than 1,500 birds have been trapped and re-located, resulting in healthy populations of wild turkeys throughout most of the State. Even in South Jersey (parts of Atlantic, Burlington, Camden, Cape May, Cumberland and Gloucester counties) where wild turkeys had been struggling just a few years ago, intensive restoration efforts have improved population numbers significantly.


The Outstanding Garden State Gobbler Records Program is administered by the New Jersey Chapter of the Wild Turkey Federation. For more information, contact your local or state chapter representative at 973-627-1601 or 856-785-0455.


Additional turkey hunting information can be found in the 2002 NJ Wild Turkey Hunting Season Information and Permit Application supplement and the August hunting issue of the New Jersey Fish and Wildlife Digest. Individuals can also visit the Division's website at www.njfishandwildlife.com.

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