Wild Turkey Population Dynamics and Brood Survival Project Report for October 2022
Provided by Oklahoma Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit, Oklahoma State University
Wild turkey genetics is among the focus areas in a planned 4.5-year study launched at the beginning of 2022 by the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation and the Oklahoma Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit to address wild turkey population dynamics and brood survival.
Genetics Study: Researcher Michael Barrett has discussed sampling of harvested turkeys with Wildlife Department biologists and has begun preparing for the upcoming spring harvest season. The sampling protocol will be altered slightly this season, with each sampling kit containing more detailed sampling instructions as well as a mock sample tube to illustrate a good tissue sample. This will hopefully alleviate questions regarding how much sample should be collected from each bird. It will also likely ensure more uniform samples and higher DNA concentrations.
Researchers continue to discuss what data analysis methods will best answer the research questions and are weighing multiple options.
Southeastern and Southwestern Study Areas: Researchers Nicolle De Filippo and Cody Griffin continue interviewing and hiring field technicians for the upcoming field seasons. They are developing new sampling procedures and buying supplies.
De Filippo gave a project presentation at the Oklahoma Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit’s Annual Cooperators Meeting in Stillwater. This research project was also featured on the National Wild Turkey Federation’s website and shared among its members (https://www.nwtf.org/content-hub/wild-turkey-research-one-year-closer-to-addressing-declines).
A pneumatic capture net launcher ordered last spring is expected to be delivered in November or early December. Delivery of an order for new GPS transmitters is expected in December.
(Financial support for this publication was provided by the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation through the Wildlife Restoration Program, F21AF02702 (W-216-R-1), and Oklahoma State University.)