Michigan DNR discourages feeding wild turkeys, encourages scaring them

LANSING, Mich. -- With springtime being turkey mating season, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources has a few tips to keep wild turkeys at bay.

This is especially important considering recent strains of bird flu impacting poultry farms throughout Michigan and Indiana.

“While many people might feed turkeys because they enjoy seeing them in their yard, fed turkeys can become comfortable around people and may start to be unwelcome. With the current avian influenza outbreak, you may want to remove your feeders altogether to keep the disease from spreading,” said Holly Vaughn, DNR Public Outreach and Engagement Unit manager.

Besides eliminating bird feeders, the DNR indicates a tactic called hazing, or scaring wild turkeys with hand-waving and loud noises.

For especially dominant male turkeys, the DNR recommends using a sprinkler system as a deterrent and covering shiny objects and surfaces such as hubcaps, paint and windows. The latter option is because aggressive turkeys may try to attack their reflection thinking it is another turkey.

For more turkey tips and information, you can view the DNR newsletter below.

Spring turkey hunting is open in Michigan until June 7. For more information, you can visit the DNR’s website.

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