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Turkey hunting in Ontario

Image Via: Tabitha Kellendonk

Turkey time

Where and how to tag a tom in Ontario this spring

With a population now around 100,000 birds, the eastern wild turkey is found across much of southern Ontario. Indeed, its range and population is growing annually and they can even be found as far away as the Sault Ste. Marie, Sudbury and North Bay areas. Translation? There are now more opportunities than ever to hunt spring and fall gobblers. Here’s a few resources to get you started.


Some significant changes were made for the 2017 season. First, it’s no longer necessary to take the Wild Turkey Hunter Education Course. You need both a small game license and a special wild turkey license but the material that was included in the wild turkey course is now covered in the regular hunter education course. It’s also now legal to use number 7 shot, along with 4, 5 and 6. As well, April 25 has now been standardized as the opening day for the spring wild turkey season, regardless of what day that lands during the week. For a full rundown of turkey hunting regs, go here.


While there are public forests or crown land you can hunt turkey, you’re best off contacting farmers or landowners and asking for permission to hunt on their private land. Alternatively, you can go with an outfitter. Here’s a sampling of outfitters in different parts of the province.

Walkerton area 

Smith Falls




Simcoe County


Prince Edward County


We’ve covered spring turkey hunting a LOT in the magazine. Here’s just a few articles that will get you on the right track to take home a tom this spring.

 A season-long guide to gunning for gobblers

10 essential turkey calls

How to stay on target when turkey hunting

How to perfectly tune your turkey calls for spring

5 turkey hang-up cures

Bob Sexton

Bob Sexton

Growing up in Gander, Newfoundland, and Peterborough, Ontario, Outdoor Canada's managing editor Bob Sexton jumped at every chance to wet a line and head afield. After spending half of the 1990s working as a tour guide in Latin America, he completed a Bachelor of Journalism from Ryerson University in 2001 and was hired on as Outdoor Canada's assistant editor. Since joining the magazine, he has won two Outdoor Writers of Canada awards, in 2008 and 2011, and contributed to numerous National Magazine Award winning or nominated stories. Sexton is the past president of the Canadian Society of Magazine Editors.

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