Is it possible to improve the turkey population in your local area by actually hunting more? Well, yes, yes, it is. But it’s not what you think. Killing more turkeys won’t result in a bigger turkey population, but hunting and trapping turkey predators that have grown to out of balance proportions in your area can make a difference. 

Depending on where you live, predators like coyotes, foxes, raccoons, crows, possums and other predators may be overpopulated and causing undue issues with the turkey population, and potentially the populations of other game animals. Hunting or trapping these overpopulated predators can improve the wildlife balance and give turkeys better odds at survival.

Turkeys are especially susceptible to predators when they are young and unable to fly. They are in even more danger as eggs, before they hatch when almost anything from crows to raccoons can eat an entire nest. After they survive their first winter, they are much hardier. But making it to that point can be very difficult if the predator population is out of balance.

Coyotes are one of the most widespread problems nationally as their populations have been expanding unchecked in many areas. They can not only kill turkeys but also drive them out of ideal habitat which impacts their ability to survive in other ways. If you and a group of friends are able to exert concerted efforts to hunt or trap these kinds of predators you can make significant difference in your area. But it may take some sustained effort before it pays off.

You need to learn about your local wildlife and identify what populations are out of balance first. Going after foxes for example if the fox population is average or below average will not help, in fact it could cause other issues. We do not want to kill all predators, we only want to help restore population balance, especially when the populations have gotten out of balance due to manmade situations, which is often the case.

Then you need to study your local hunting and trapping laws to see what your options are. For many of these animals, trapping is more efficient and easier than hunting. Particularly with racoons and coyotes. Whatever efforts you may take, stay safe, legal, and ethical in all that you do.