Man asks about feed ban, reinstatement for fall turkey season

Published 9:14 am Friday, June 21, 2024

JACKSON — A man asked the Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks Commission to restore the fall turkey season. His pleas fell on deaf ears this year. 

Todd Williams additionally asked about the status of a statewide supplemental feeding ban. 

Williams made his plea in a public comment at the MDWFP Commission meeting Wednesday afternoon in Jackson. Williams and former turkey program coordinator Ron Seiss have made comments several times in the past asking the commission to restore the fall turkey season. 

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In May 2023, Mississippi’s fall turkey season was suspended indefinitely in response to concerns about turkey populations and studies showing improved hen survival would help populations. Seiss asked last month for commissioners to consider a compromise to reinstate the fall turkey season. No action was taken then. 

Williams presented a similar compromise Wednesday. He asked the commission to restore a fall season with regulations he felt were fair. 

“One gobbler for the fall season, no hens and the gobbler counts towards your spring limit and it has to have a six inch beard,” Williams said. “It would be a good compromise.” 

Commissioners remained silent for a moment before William Mounger spoke up. 

“The season is still suspended but we welcome comments. There will just be a spring season,” Mounger said. 

Williams asked for an update on discussion about a statewide supplemental feed ban. Chief of Wildlife Staff Russ Walsh gave a summary about disease management at the March commission meeting held in McComb. It was the last time the issue was discussed. 

Attorney Drew Malone, with the Attorney General’s Office and attorney for the MDWFP Commission, told Williams there was no action before the commission for a statewide supplemental feed ban.