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Thirteen wild turkey hens that were native to Barry County have been relocated to Oscoda County, the Department of Natural Resources announced today.

The trap-and-transfer operation was a joint effort of the DNR, Michigan Wild Turkey Hunters Association, National Wild Turkey Federation and the Mio Chamber of Commerce, as part of a plan to revitalize the northern Michigan wild turkey population, which has been in decline during the last decade. The birds, which were trapped on private land in an area with a robust turkey population, were released on public land near Fairview, a town once billed as the "Wild Turkey Capital of Michigan."

Al Stewart, the DNR's upland game bird specialist, said more wild turkeys may be released in northern Michigan this year if weather conditions remain conducive to trapping birds in southern Michigan.

"This is an excellent example of our employees working with our stakeholders to enhance wildlife populations and produce high-quality outdoor experiences," said DNR Director Rodney Stokes.

Wild turkeys were once totally extirpated from Michigan, but thanks to cooperative efforts of the DNR and conservation groups, turkey populations are now thriving in many parts of the state.

The Michigan Department of Natural Resources is committed to the conservation, protection, management, use and enjoyment of the state's natural and cultural resources for current and future generations. For more information, go to www.michigan.gov/dnr.
 

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