The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) announced today that the 2023 Spring Turkey Season in Suffolk County will begin Sunday, May 1, and continue through May 31, consistent with management practices in New York State and the Northeast. All of Wildlife Management Unit 1C (Suffolk County) is open for spring turkey hunting. The demand for spring turkey hunting on DEC-managed lands makes it necessary for hunters to follow specific access procedures to ensure equal hunting opportunities for all.
DEC-managed properties open to shotgun spring turkey hunting require entering a drawing and advance reservations. To enter the drawing, hunters must complete the Long Island State Lands Spring Turkey Drawing Registration Form (leaves DEC website). Interested hunters are required to fill out their name, email address, and DEC customer ID, and list the top three properties they wish to hunt. Once the survey is completed and submitted, the hunter has been entered into the drawing. All entries must be received by 4:45 p.m. on March 13. Hunters will receive a drawing number via email after submitting their entry. Anyone unable to complete the online survey should contact the office at (631) 444-0310 before March 13.
For general questions, or for those unable to access the survey online, please call DEC’s Region 1 Wildlife office at (631) 444-0310. Hunters may submit one entry only. Any individual who sends more than one entry will have all of their entries removed from the drawing. Hunting parties are limited to three hunters. Each member of a three-hunter party may send one entry.
For more information on DEC-managed properties open for the spring turkey hunt please visit DEC’s website.
Spring Wild Turkey Season Specifics
Season Dates: Month of May, including weekends
Hunting Hours: One-half hour before sunrise until noon
Manner of Taking: Hunters may hunt with a shotgun or handgun loaded with shot no larger than number 2 and no smaller than number 9, or with a bow. Hunters may not use crossbows or rifles. Handguns are not permitted while hunting on State lands.
Valid License and Tags: Hunters must have a valid New York State hunting license and a turkey permit to participate in the hunt.
Spring Turkey Season Bag Limit for WMU 1C: No more than one bearded turkey per day; and No more than one bearded turkey in wildlife management unit (WMU) 1C.
Areas Open for the Spring Season: All of Wildlife Management Unit 1C (Suffolk County) is open for spring turkey hunting. The demand for spring turkey hunting on DEC-managed lands makes it necessary for hunters to follow specific access procedure to ensure equal hunting opportunities for all. More information is available on the DEC website at DEC’s Hunting on Long Island webpage. Properties open to shotgun spring turkey hunting require entering a drawing and advance reservations. Lands that will be open for spring turkey on Long Island include:
DEC-Managed Lands in Suffolk County:
- Calverton Pine Barrens State Forest – Archery Only
- East Bartlett Pine Barrens State Forest – Archery Only
- Carmans River Pine Barrens State Forest – Archery Only
- Ridge Conservation Area – Archery Only
- Rocky Point Pine Barrens State Forest – Shotgun and Archery
- Westhampton Dwarf Pine Plains Preserve – Shotgun and Archery
- Henrys Hollow Pine Barrens State Forest – Shotgun and Archery
Cooperative Hunting Areas that will allow spring hunting season are:
- Barcelona Neck Cooperative Hunting Area – Shotgun and Archery
- David A. Sarnoff Cooperative Hunting Area – Shotgun and Archery
- Kings Park Cooperative Hunting Area – Archery Only
- Otis Pike Preserve Cooperative Hunting Area – Shotgun and Archery
Tidal Wetlands Properties (archery only, no reservation required)
- Fireplace Neck
- Havens Point
- Long Beach Bay
Additional information on New York State turkey hunting regulations can be found on DEC’s website.
Successful hunters are strongly encouraged to bring harvested birds to the Ridge Hunter Check Station located at 484 Randall Road, Ridge, NY, following the hunt. DEC staff will be recording biological data to help evaluate the season and population structure. Visiting the check station is voluntary, but harvested birds must be reported within 48 hours of harvest by phone (1-866-426-3778) or via DEC’s Game Harvest Reporting webpage. For check station hours of operation, visit DEC’s Hunting on Long Island webpage or call the Region 1 Wildlife Office (631-444-0310).
DEC-managed lands open to shotgun turkey hunting will be closed to other users from two hours before sunrise until noon throughout the season. Properties owned by local, county, and/or state (State Parks) governments may or may not allow spring turkey hunting.
Hunters and recreationalists should reach out to the landowner to determine if access restrictions are in place. For more information on hunting seasons and regulations, please visit the DEC’s hunting webpage. For tips and further details on regulations on turkey hunting, contact DEC regional wildlife office at (631) 444-0310 or visit DEC’s Turkey Hunting Regulations webpage.
Additional information can be found at the following webpages:
Long Island Public Hunting Areas
Public Hunting Opportunities in Suffolk County, Long Island
Conditions for Use of DEC-Managed Lands in Suffolk County