Arizona Turkey Season

Hunters all over the state eagerly anticipate the Arizona turkey hunting season. The start of the turkey shooting season, which usually lasts from early April to late May, is anxiously anticipated by hunters each year. Arizona provides some of the finest shooting chances in the nation thanks to its varied environments and abundant turkey population. The turkey hunting season in Arizona is a fantastic chance to experience nature, hone your abilities, and even harvest a prize, whether you are an experienced hunter or a beginner. Grab the information related to Turkey season dates, regulations, licenses etc., and all other information you need to go in the wild.

Arizona Turkey Hunting Season

The hunting season usually goes from early April to late May. Hunting in Arizona includes Merriam’s and Gould’s turkeys. Gould’s turkeys have returned in recent years and can be found in Units 29, 30A (north of AZ Hwy 80), 31, 32, 33, 34A, 35A, and 35B [3]. The Arizona Game and Fish Department issued the following year’s planned hunting seasons and rules.

Limited Weapon-Shotgun Spring Turkey Season

Turkey TypeHunting DatesArea
Merriam's TurkeyApr 28 - May 4, 2023 and
May 12 - May 25, 2023
Open in area 1
Merriam's TurkeyMay 5 - May 25, 2023Open in area 1, 3B, 3C, 4A and 4B, 5A, 5B, 6A, 6B (excluding Camp Navajo), 7, 8 and 10, 12A, 13A, 13B South, 17A, 17B, 18B, 19A, 20A, 21, 22, 23, 24A, and 27
Merriam's TurkeyApr 28 - May 25, 2023Open in Camp Navajo in Unit 6B for Disabled Veteran/Wounded Warrior/Purple Heart and Military
Merriam's TurkeyApr 28 - May 25, 2023Open in Camp Navajo in Unit 6B for Other
Gould's TurkeyMay 5 - May 11, 2023 and
May 19 - Jun 1, 2023
Open in area 29 and 30A (north of AZ Hwy 80)
Gould's TurkeyMay 12 - Jun 1, 2023Open in area 29 and 30A (north of AZ Hwy 80)
Gould's TurkeyMay 5 - May 11, 2023 and
May 19 - Jun 1, 2023
Open in area 31, 32
Gould's TurkeyMay 12 - Jun 1, 2023Open in area 31, 32
Gould's TurkeyApr 28 - Jun 1, 2023Open in area 33 (north and west of Redington Road)
Rio Grande TurkeyApr 28 - May 4, 2023 and
May 12 - May 25, 2023
13B North
Rio Grande TurkeyMay 5 - May 25, 202313B North

Youth-Only Limited Weapon Shotgun Shooting Shot Spring Turkey

Turkey TypesSeason DatesOpen Areas
Merriam’s TurkeyApr 21 - Apr 27, 2023 and
May 12 - May 25, 2023
3C
Merriam’s TurkeyApr 21 - Apr 27, 2023 and
May 12 - May 25, 2023
6A
Merriam’s TurkeyApr 21 - Apr 27, 2023 and
May 12 - May 25, 2023
6B (excluding Camp Navajo)
Merriam’s TurkeyApr 21 - Apr 27, 2023 and
May 12 - May 25, 2023
23

Youth-Only Nonpermit-TAG Required Spring Turkey (Limited Shotgun)

Turkey TypesSeason DatesOpen Areas
Merriam’s TurkeyApr 21 - Apr 27, 2023 and
May 12 - May 25, 2023
1, 4A, 4B, 5A, 5B, 7, 8, 10, 12A and 27

Archery-Only Spring Turkey

Turkey TypesSeason DatesOpen Areas
Gould’s TurkeyApr 28 - May 4, 2023 and
May 19 - Jun 1, 2023
33 (south and east of Redington Road)
Gould’s TurkeyMay 5 - May 11, 2023 and
May 19 - Jun 1, 2023
33 (south and east of Redington Road)
Gould’s TurkeyMay 12 - Jun 1, 202333 (south and east of Redington Road)

Archery-Only Nonpermit-Tag Require Spring Turkey

Turkey TypesSeason DatesOpen Areas
Merriam’s TurkeyMay 12 - May 25, 20231, 4A, 4B, 6A, 12A, 23 and 27

Hunting Regulations

  • Units 29, 30A (north of AZ Highway 80), 31, 32, 33, 34A, 35A, and 35B all contain Gould’s turkeys.
  • Individuals who intend to apply should obtain entry before filing their application because access to hunts in this unit is very restricted.
  • According to installation hunting rules, approved hunters who qualify as “Authorized Contributors” can kill turkeys at Camp Navajo in Unit 6B. Hunters must apply by the deadline to the Arizona Game and Fish Department. The National Guard Page lists base rules and security standards. Scouts must read and agree to these rules to get Camp Navajo hunt numbers.
  • Hunters must submit proof of hunter safety education when applying for a Camp Navajo pass. However, if a candidate files for access for which they are ineligible, they will not be allowed to hunt.
  • Seekers should know that Force Security Situations, training tasks, and industrial activities may only stop hunts after notice. Hunters drawn for these permits will not be refunded or rewarded by the Arizona Game and Fish Department or Camp Navajo if a game is cancelled.
  • All hunters must pay a leisure fee to Camp Navajo, which can be made with personal checks or money orders. The activity fee is listed on the Camp Navajo website or by emailing the hunt organizer.
  • Hunting is permitted only when the appropriate hunting unit is open for business in the Grand Canyon-Parashant, Vermilion Cliffs, Sonoran Desert, Ironwood Forest, and Agua Fria National Monuments.
  • According to R12-4-303, it is illegal to fire arrows, bolts, or fusion devices for hunting within a quarter mile of any active farmstead, residence, cabin, camp, or facility without the owner’s or resident’s consent.
  • Hunting is permitted in the Rogers Lake Coconino County Natural Area and Telescope Mesa City of Flagstaff Natural Area for turkeys, but cross-country car travel is prohibited. Hunting is also prohibited within 1/4 mile of any active facility, animal viewing station, picnic spot, or path.
  • Hunting is permitted in Unit 33’s A-7 Ranch, Oracle Ridge Land, and Six Bar Ranch. However, hunting is not allowed within 1/4 mile of any developed picnic spot, set campsite, gun range, occupied facility, boat dock, or golf course in County Parks. Trails are not allowed in developed areas.
  • Turkeys near domestic zones in some units. According to A.R.S. 17-309 A 4; R12-4-303, hunters cannot use guns, arrows, bolts, or fusion devices within 1/4 mile of an occupied home or facility while hunting.
  • To approved military and citizen employees with a valid Fort Huachuca post-hunting pass, Unit 35A of Fort Huachuca Army Base is open for turkey hunting. Dependents of troops and Fort Huachuca citizens with legal post-hunting access may participate in youth-only hunts. Hunters must secure season dates, game I.D.s, and unique rules from Fort Huachuca to partake. Hunt delays may occur without prior notice due to force protection conditions and application dates that must be met. Hunters drawn for these permits will not receive any refund from the Arizona Game and Fish Department if they are cancelled due to increased security.
  • The 13B North Hunt Unit is defined as beginning at the Arizona-Utah state line and continuing south along the western tip of the Hurricane Rim to Mohave County Road 30. (Navajo Trail). It then moves westward along Mohave County Road 30 to Mohave County Road 5 (Mt. Trumbull Road), northward along Mohave County Road 5 to B.L.M. Road 1004, westward along B.L.M. Road 1004 to Mohave County Road 101 (Mudd Mountain Road), southwestward along Mohave County Road 101 to the Arizona-Nevada state line, northward along the Arizona-Nevada state line to the Arizona-Utah state line, and finally eastward along the Arizona-Utah.
  • The 13B South Hunt Unit starts at the western edge of the Hurricane Rim and Mohave County Road 30 (Navajo Trail), continues south along the Hurricane Rim to Mohave County Road 5 (Mt. Trumbull Road), west along Mohave County Road 5 to the town of Mt. Trumbull (Bundyville), south on Mohave County Road 257 to B.L.M. Road 1045, south on B.L.M. Road 1045 to Cold Spring Wash, south along the bottom of Cold Spring Wash to Whitmore Wash.

Arizona turkey hunting license fees

License TypeFee (Resident)Fee (Non-Resident)
Youth Combination Hunting and Fishing license (ages 10-17)$5 $5
Hunting License$37 $160
Turkey Permit Tag$38 $105

Gould’s turkey is only found in Arizona, New Mexico, and northern Mexico. Merriam’s turkey is best in the ponderosa pine woods north of the Gila River. It’s essential to note that Camp Navajo levies a leisure fee for all hunts, which can be found on their website or by writing the hunt organizer. Lastly, youth ages 10-17 must buy a $5 Youth Combo Hunting and Fishing license, and under-10s can only seek animals other than the big game with an approved adult.

F.A.Q. related to Arizona Turkey Hunt

How can I apply for a draw to get a spring turkey hunting permit in Arizona in 2023?

The Arizona Game and Fish Department are presently taking applications for 2023 hunt permit tags given through the drawing process for spring turkey hunting and Javelina, bison, and bird capture. Go to www.azgfd.gov and pick “Apply for a Draw.”

What are the cost of a hunting license and turkey permit tag for Arizona residents in 2023?

Residents of Arizona pay $37 for a hunting license and $38 for a bird permit tag. A hunting license costs $160, and a bird permit tag costs $105.

When is the shotgun spring season for Merriam's turkey in Arizona in 2023?

The Merriam’s turkey firearm spring season in Arizona runs from April 28 to May 18, 2023. These I.D.s are awarded through a drawing; the entry time opens in early October.

Besides the spring season, are there other turkey hunting opportunities in Arizona in 2023?

Yes, other turkey hunting options in Arizona don’t require hunters to apply for a game permit tag through the drawing process. These include juniors-only duck hunting (shotgun only). For archery-only deer hunting, there may be unit limitations.

Dates & Regulations source: AZGFD

John Lewis
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