A random sample was drawn of 5,000 Illinois residents with a 2019 Illinois spring turkey hunting permit. The sample included 3,000 turkey hunters with a spring turkey shotgun/archery permit (general hunters) and 2,000 hunters with a landowner spring turkey shotgun/archery permit (landowner hunters). Selected individuals were mailed an 8-page self-administered questionnaire designed to understand attitudes, preferences, and behaviors of turkey hunters in Illinois. We received 2,932 questionnaires, 2,733 of which were usable, for a 57% response rate. Turkey hunters on average hunted 4.5 days during the 2019 spring turkey season and harvested an average of .4 turkeys per hunter. Most turkey hunters were satisfied with their overall turkey hunting experience (76%). Fifty percent of respondents believed that the turkey population in the areas that they hunted most often for turkey was too low. Most hunters only hunted on private land during the 2019 spring turkey season (82%). On average, turkey hunters encountered 1.0 other hunters (that were not part of their party) on their most crowded day in the field during the 2019 spring turkey season. Most hunters indicated there was not too much competition from other hunters where they hunted (70%). Enjoying nature and the outdoors, being out in the woods, and experiencing the challenge of the hunt were the most important factors for respondents during the spring turkey season. Only 1% of respondents (n = 30) hunted turkeys on an Illinois Recreational Access Program (IRAP) property during the 2019 spring turkey season. Sixteen percent of respondents indicated that they took a youth (17 years old or younger) hunting during the 2019 spring turkey season.
|Name||INHS Technical Report 2019 (38)|