We used 14 years of data to evaluate potential causes of a population decline and make management recommendations. We found that poor reproduction because of low nesting rates and very low renesting was driving the decline, and that habitat quality was low because of lack of open areas. We recommended that the agency focus on managing habitat diversity, including frequent disturbance to mature pine stands using fire to stimulate understory vegetation. We also suggested the agency conserve bottomland hardwood stands, as turkeys used them throughout the annual cycle.
Ben Franklin once noted, “It is the first responsibility of every citizen