Home Ranges of Wild Turkey Gobblers in Central Mississippi

Fifty-two eastern wild turkey (Meleagris gallopavo silvestris) gobblers were monitored by telemetry on Tallahala Wildlife Management Area, Bienville National Forest, Mississippi, from January 1986 to September 1987. Annual home range (HR) for 6 adults and 3 juveniles averaged 1,680 ha. Annual HR's averaged 1,409 ha when the very large HR (3,850 ha) of I juvenile was not included. Based on 79 seasonal HR's, average HR in spring 1986 was 812 ha, summer 688 ha, fall 447 ha, and winter 506 ha; and average HR for spring 1987 was 1,441 ha and for summer, 775 ha. Pre-hunting season HR's were not significantly different between harvested and non-harvested gobblers. Gobbler HR size during the 1986 hunting season (378 ha) was smaller (P < 0.05) than during the 1987 season (799 ha).

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