Yep, they are going to look at whether west nile is effecting turkeys as it is grouse.
I'm all for the study, but I hope it doesn't take as long as the grouse. Grouse had been on a pretty sharp decline in a lot of areas for like 15 years, to the point of being nearly wiped out in some areas and nobody knew (or said) why until recently.
Probably nothing. However it is important for management purposes to know if WNV is affecting turkeys at all as it could affect the management plan for them. From the description of the study I wouldn't think this study is costing alot of money. I see the NWTF Biologist is on there too, so I would guess that maybe NWTF is providing some of the funding? Don't know if that is true but wouldn't surprise me.and what can be done about it ??
Removing the eggs from the nests in April or even early May should have no negative effects on the hens or their ability to renest.The PGC does have some very dedicated biologists working on the West Nile problem. I’m all for it. Got the information last week from NWTF.
I just hope the disruption of the hens ( by trying to raid a nest) doesn’t have a negative effect.
That depends on the results of the research. If west nile is effecting turkey populations it could result in a reduction or even an end to fall (hen) turkey harvests or seasons.and what can be done about it ??
Yes.Wondering...Is this study a "first" for PA ?
Removing the eggs from the nests in April or even early May should have no negative effects on the hens or their ability to renest.
When they remove the eggs they will remove all of them the same as any other predator would. That way the hen will simply renest and start over. All that will mean is the eggs will hatch later in the year and perhaps even give the poults a better chance of survival.
If they were only taking some of the eggs from the nest it could have a negative effect because the hen would continue to incubate the remaining eggs and end up with a smaller clutch of eggs to hatch.
This should have no negative effect on the hen's ability to pull off a successful nest or incubating a successful clutch of eggs.
The most important thing is for no citizen to remove any eggs thinking they doing a good thing. That action needs to be well planned and coordinated by the wildlife professionals.
That depends on the results of the research. If west nile is effecting turkey populations it could result in a reduction or even an end to fall (hen) turkey harvests or seasons.
The first thing is to do the research and find out what is reality verses speculation. They know turkey numbers have been declining. The question then becomes why?
I suspect west nile is a factor because we have been doing wildlife survey routes since 1998. Both turkeys and grouse are amount the survey species. We noticed both the grouse and turkey sightings declining about the same time and at similar percentages. That suggest, though certainly isn't proof, that they are both being effected by the same thing. How much of that is weather related verses other cause remains to be determined through scientific research.
They did a similar study on grouse eggs a few years ago.
I think a couple other states have found west nile in their turkeys so that probably helped in the decision to do research on it in Penna.
As usual Penna. is probably leading the way in wildlife management and research.