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Wild Turkey in North Dakota

Wild turkey are another popular North Dakota upland game species. Turkeys are not native to North Dakota. Their historical range extended only as far north as southern South Dakota and Minnesota. The first introduction of turkeys into North Dakota took place in the early 1950s along the Missouri, Knife and Heart rivers. Turkeys need several types of habitat to survive: trees for roosting, grasses and shrubs for nesting and escape cover, forb-rich areas for brood-rearing (forbs attract insects for chicks), and a reliable winter food source. This winter food source is often provided by waste agricultural grain or food plots.

Adult male turkeys generally weigh 16-24 pounds; females weigh 8-10 pounds. Turkey typically lay 10-13 eggs in the spring and incubate them for 28 days. Chicks are precocial and leave the nest shortly after hatching. They can fly at about three weeks.

Learn more about wild turkey at

Developing Habitat for Wild Turkey