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January 24, 2006

Al Stewart, 517-373-1263
Mary Dettloff, 517-335-3014

Spring Turkey Hunt Application Deadline Approaching

The Department of Natural Resources reminds all turkey hunters that they must apply for a license or purchase a Guaranteed Hunt Period license (Hunt No. 234) by the Feb. 1 deadline to be eligible to participate in the 2006 spring turkey hunting season.

Hunters may apply for or purchase a turkey hunting license at any authorized license dealer, at DNR Operations Service Centers or online at www.michigan.gov/dnr using the E-License system. The nonrefundable application fee is $4. Hunters may use MasterCard, VISA, American Express or Discover when applying for or purchasing a license via the DNR Web site, which is available 24 hours a day during the application period.

During the application process, it is important that hunters verify their customer ID (Michigan Driver License, DNR Sportcard or state of Michigan ID card) numbers. An incorrect customer ID number will cause individuals to become ineligible for a license.

The spring turkey season is April 17 through May 31 and will last from 7 to 31 days, depending on the hunt unit. A total of 114,190 licenses are available through a lottery for the hunter-limited hunt periods. This total includes 46,690 general licenses and 67,500 private land licenses.

Hunters again have the option of applying for Hunt Unit ZZ, which includes all private land units in southern Michigan. Hunters who draw this license may hunt the first two weeks of the season on private land anywhere in the unit.

Applicants may check drawing results online beginning March 1. Applicants who did not apply online will be notified of drawing results by mail before March 7.

If licenses are still available after the drawing, the remaining licenses will be issued on a first-come, first-served basis to unsuccessful applicants in the license lottery. These individuals may purchase one leftover license in person at any license-issuing agent beginning March 8 at 10 a.m. (EDT). Hunt No. 234 also is available to all unsuccessful applicants.

"Hunters looking for the greatest hunting flexibility should consider Hunt No. 234, which includes all open areas except public lands in Unit ZZ, the southern Lower Peninsula Wild Turkey Management Unit," said Al Stewart, DNR upland game bird specialist.

Hunt No. 234 licenses may be purchased online or from license agents during the application period. Individuals who select this option will not be charged the $4 application fee. Hunters also may select this hunt as a second choice on their application.

"The current hunting regulations are established to maximize hunting opportunity while maintaining high quality hunting experiences. We are able to expand hunting opportunities based on the success of Michigan's wild turkey restoration program," said Stewart.

The DNR is committed to the conservation, protection, management, use and enjoyment of the state's natural resources for current and future generations.
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