Wild Turkey population declining across Georgia

Wild turkeys are on the decline across the Southeastern US. / FOX 31

During the week of thanksgiving, people probably won't have a hard time finding turkey, but if you're looking for one in the wild you may have a little trouble.

"Overall in the United States turkeys are doing fine, but in the past few years they've noticed a slight decline in the number of turkeys in the southeast United States, including Georgia," said John Denton a Senior Wildlife Biologist, with the Department of Natural Resources.

Experts say the population decline is more prevalent in the northern part of the state, and at least for now the number of turkeys in Southwest Georgia doesn't raise a concern.

As is usually the case, whenever there is a decline in a species population, researchers are looking into possible causes, and experts think in the long run the turkeys will be fine.

Denton said, "There's really no concern for the turkey to ever get down to the levels it had at the early part of the 20th century when they were being over hunted, because they were being market hunted."

In fact, in Georgia, wild turkey hunting season is only once a year in the spring.

Local hunters say there didn't seem to be any less turkeys, than previous years, " I'd say it was far, it was a good season, I didn't hear much complaining, it was pretty good from, you know, my experience," said turkey hunter, Clif Flowers.

Since it's not turkey hunting season, it looks like your only ,option for thanksgiving dinner is to stick with the ones you find in the store.