Try turkey hunting this fall!

ArraySeptember 3, 2020 at 3:00 pm

The fall wild turkey hunting season begins on September 14! With a bag limit of up to five turkeys in some Wildlife Management Districts, there is plenty of opportunity for wild turkey this fall! We've got some tips to get you started. 

Tips to get started. 

Find the flock

The most challenging aspect of hunting fall turkeys is finding them! Unlike the spring, turkeys are not as vocal. They're not showing off, they're interested in food. Fall flocks range over a wider area in their search for food, sometimes not returning to the same spot for days.

Look for clues

As the weather cools, turkeys will seek out remaining soft and hard mast along the treeline. Look for their food source and evidence they've been around, such as scratching, droppings, and feathers.

Scout while deer hunting

Fall turkey hunting overlaps with deer hunting, if you're already heading out to scout or hunt for deer, keep an eye out for turkey and turkey sign. Be sure to reference bag limits, season dates, and which Wildlife Management District you're hunting. 

Find + Flush 

If you hunt deer in October, fall wild turkey could be game of opportunity while in your blind or treestand, crossing your path before you see a deer. However, if you're just looking for turkey, a more proactive method is breaking up a flock. In Maine, you can do this on foot or with a trained dog in the fall season. You can use soft yelps, kee-kees, or clucks as calls to try and regroup the turkeys. When the turkeys regroup, you'll be waiting. 

New to hunting?

First things first: Get your Maine hunting license and turkey hunting permit and be sure to review the hunting laws and rules. 

If you haven't completed a hunter safety course yet, but would like to give turkey hunting a try, take a moment to learn more about the apprentice hunting license! Consider talking with a friend, family member or coworker who might serve as a mentor to help you get started on your Maine turkey hunting adventure. Remember, you will need to follow CDC guidelines on safe physical distancing. Or click here to review our upcoming safety courses.

Looking for a great place to hunt? Maine's Wildlife Management Areas offer wonderful opportunity. Find one in your neck of the woods!  Maine is fortunate to have landowners who offer access to their private property to hunt. Read more about exploring private land in Maine.

Harvest a banded bird?

MDIFW is working closely with University of Maine Orono on a banding study to better understand wild turkey population dynamics. If you harvest a banded wild turkey please report it either by calling 1-844-234-9237 or online at

Reminder: You are REQUIRED to tag your fall turkey(s)

All turkeys must be tagged. At tagging stations, practice social distancing and wear a mask.