The 2023 West Virginia Turkey Hunting Season begins April 17, 2023. Familiarize yourself with the WV Turkey Hunting Regulations before heading afield.
Resident and Nonresident WV Turkey Hunting License Privileges
Three wild turkey may be taken by hunters who possess one of the following valid base licenses or license combinations: resident license (Class X, Class X3, Class XP, Class XJ, Class AHJ, Class XS, Class AB-L, Class A-L, Classes A+CS+BG , Classes AH+CS+BG); or a free license (Military, Disabled Veteran, former POW, Class DT or Senior Citizen); or nonresident license (Classes E+CS/ LE+WW, Classes AAH+CS/LE+WW, Classes XXJ+CS/LE , Classes AAHJ+CS/LE or Class DT).
Class DT license holders must be accompanied by a properly licensed parent, guardian or other designated competent adult 21 years of age or older.
Underage residents and resident landowners hunting on their own land (see page 10) may take three turkeys without a license. Two bearded turkeys may be taken in the spring and one either-sex turkey in the fall.
No more than one turkey may be taken per day.
Additional licenses must be purchased
To turkey hunt in WV on national forest lands a Class I (required for Class E or Class AAH) is required for the 2023 West Virginia Turkey Season.
To hunt turkey with a handgun you must be 21 or older and possess a Class A-1 license unless you are a resident landowners hunting on their own land.
Resident Landowner Privileges
West Virginia resident landowners may hunt on their own land without obtaining a license. Resident landowners hunting on their own property without a license can take the same number of turkeys as a licensed hunter. A hunter (licensee or landowner) cannot take more than the number of turkeys allowed in the respective seasons.
Firearms, air rifles, muzzleloaders, crossbows and bows legal for hunting wild turkey
Wild turkey may be hunted with rifles, air rifles .22 caliber or larger, handguns, muzzleloaders, shotguns, bows or crossbows with arrows or bolts equipped with a point having at least two sharp-cutting edges measuring in excess of 3/4 inch wide.
Field Tagging, Checking, and Transporting
Each person killing a turkey must either attach a completed field tag to the turkey or remain with the turkey and have upon their person a completed field tag before removing the carcass from where it was killed. A person who does not possess a field tag must make one. This tag must bear the hunter’s name, address, hunting license number (if required) and the date, time and county of kill. Immediately upon arriving at a residence, camp, hunting lodge, vehicle or vessel, the field tag shall be attached to the turkey and must remain on the carcass until it is electronically registered and a DNR-issued 13-digit game check number, the hunter’s name and address are attached.
The carcass of each turkey shall be electronically registered and legally tagged before it is either skinned or transported beyond the boundaries of the county adjacent to that in which the kill was made and within 72 hours from when it was killed or 24 hours from the close of the respective season, whichever comes first. The DNR-issued game tag number and the hunter’s name and address shall remain on the bird until it is dressed for consumption.
No person may transport or possess wildlife killed by another hunter, unless the wildlife or parts thereof are accompanied by a paper tag filled out legibly bearing the signature, address, date of kill, hunting license number (if required) and the DNR-issued game tag number (if required) of the hunter who killed the wildlife. The tag shall also specify the species and quantity of wildlife.
Common WEst Virginia Turkey Season Violations
- Hunting over bait
- Hunting without license
- Improper license
- Making false application for license
- Exceeding the limits
- Loaded gun in a vehicle
- Failure to field tag turkey
- Illegal possession of wildlife
- Hunting without permission
There is a $200 Reward for information leading to arrest and conviction of a person found guilty of illegally killing a turkey in WV.
In the 2022 West Virginia turkey hunting season, hunters took 9,366 turkeys in the spring. This was a 7.6 percent decrease from the 2021 harvest. Remember, safety fist when you participate in the 2023 West Virginia turkey season. Success is important but so is coming home at the end of the day. To purchase your license before you go turkey hunting visit the WV DNR website at www.WVHunt.com