The Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) is asking the public to participate in surveying wild turkeys and ruffed grouse by reporting sightings of these two species.
Every year, the ODNR Division of Wildlife conducts a turkey and grouse brood survey to estimate population growth. The brood survey relies on the public to report observations of all wild turkeys and ruffed grouse seen during May, June, July and August. Wildlife watchers and hunters can report observations at the new Wildlife Species Sighting webpage at wildohio.gov.
Information submitted to the brood survey helps to predict future population changes and guide wild turkey management in the state. More than 2,800 turkeys were reported during the 2017 survey timeframe, with an average of 1.8 young turkeys (poults) per adult hen turkey. This average was below the long-term average of 2.4 poults per adult hen.
State and county population information is available online at wildohio.gov. Biologists began tracking summer observations of wild turkeys in 1962. Ruffed grouse were added to the survey in 1999.