Our wild turkeys are calling
Nebraska offers the best turkey hunting opportunities in the entire country. It’s not just that Nebraska’s got an awful lot of turkeys – including the highly sought-after Merriam’s – though it certainly does. Nebraska also offers plentiful and affordable permits, long seasons, great public access and $8 permits for youth.
Spring 2021: Nebraska’s spring season is among the longest around. Archery opens March 25, shotgun opens April 17 and the season doesn’t close until May 31.
Fall 2021: Hunters get another long season later in the year with the fall season running from Sept. 15 through Jan. 31.
2021 Season Dates
|SPRING Youth Archery||March 25 – May 31, 2021|
|SPRING Archery||March 25 – May 31, 2021|
|SPRING Youth Shotgun||April 10 – May 31, 2021|
|SPRING Shotgun||April 17 – May 31, 2021|
|FALL Youth Archery and Shotgun||Sept. 15, 2021 – Jan. 31, 2022|
|FALL Archery and Shotgun||Sept. 15, 2021 – Jan. 31, 2022|
Buying a permit: Permits are plentiful and may be bought at Game and Parks permitting offices, online or by mail. In the spring, hunters may buy up to three permits good for one bird each; fall hunters may buy two permits good for two birds. In 2015, Nebraska also began offering mobile turkey permits.
Resident: $30 | Nonresident: $128 | Youth: $8
All permits must have a $25 habitat stamp.
Where to hunt
With a turkey population that’s exploded over the last decade, it’s no secret turkeys can be found in every county in the state. Hunters will find good turkey opportunities on more than 1 million acres of publically accessible land in Nebraska.
Planning your trip
We have put together a couple turkey hunting trip planner options, highlighting areas of the state where hunters will find some of the highest concentrations of turkeys as well as abundant public hunting lands. Also included are suggestion on lodging and other activities and attractions in the area.
The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission has produced a series of educational turkey hunting videos. Learn more about equipment, techniques, turkey biology and more.
Learn about spring turkey hunting strategies from set up approach to walking in search of them (run’n’gun).
A basic introduction to equipment including shotguns, decoys, camouflage and blinds.
Calling turkey information with demonstrations of different turkey noises using slate, box and mouth calls.
Learn more about turkey biology and places to find them.
Each year, turkey hunter surveys are conducted at the end of the spring and fall seasons. The information obtained is compiled, summarized and provided in the following reports.
Past Survey Reports
- 2017 Spring Turkey Harvest Report
- 2016 Fall Turkey Harvest Report
- 2016 Fall Turkey Hunter Survey Report
- 2016 Spring Turkey Harvest Report
- 2016 Spring Turkey Hunter Survey Report
- 2015 Fall Turkey Harvest Report
- 2015 Fall Turkey Hunter Survey Report
In the 2017 spring hunter survey report, almost all hunters (96%) would hunt Nebraska again based on their experiences and reported high satisfaction.
2018 Spring Turkey Harvest Report
2018 Fall Turkey Hunter Survey Report
2018 Fall Turkey Harvest Report
2018 Spring Turkey Hunter Survey
2017 Fall Turkey Hunter Survey Report
2017 Fall Turkey Harvest Report
2017 Spring Turkey Hunter Survey Report
Breast Feathers The breast feathers of a hen are fringed in white or buff, making the bird appear frosted or lighter colored. Male breast feathers are fringed in black, making them appear darker than the female.BeardsMale turkeys and some females (about five percent) have beards. Growth rate is normally 4-5 inches per year, so it is common for juvenile males to have beards less than 6 inches long and for age two and older males to have beards greater than 6 inches in length. Normal wear and tear causes beards to wear and break so beard length varies considerably in older birds and may be less than 6 inches on occasion.