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Wild Turkey Science

Dr. Marcus Lashley & Dr. Will Gulsby

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Wild Turkey Science is a science-based podcast bringing you the latest research on wild turkey ecology and management. This podcast is part of the Natural Resources University podcast network and made possible by Turkeys for Tomorrow.
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show series
 
Dr. Dwayne Elmore, Director of the Game Bird Program at Tall Timbers Research Station, joins us to breakdown the reproductive ecology and behavior of wild turkeys, how and why they lek, and if this impacts spring hunting. Donate to wild turkey research: UF Turkey Donation Fund , Auburn Turkey Donation Fund Resources: Honeycomb Custom Calls Red-capp…
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Marcus and Will sit down under one roof to review the available literature on declining insect populations. They pull from studies across the globe to discuss the implications of insect declines on terrestrial, ground-nesting birds and how we can help mitigate these effects for the wild turkey. Donate to wild turkey research: UF Turkey Donation Fun…
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Mark Turner, PhD candidate in Dr. Craig Harper’s lab at the University of Tennessee, joins us to disclose results from their recent study assessing the effects of canopy reduction and fire seasonality on turkey habitat quality and use in upland hardwoods. Donate to wild turkey research: UF Turkey Donation Fund , Auburn Turkey Donation Fund Resource…
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Dr. Mike Chamberlain, Terrell Professor of Wildlife Ecology and Management at the University of Georgia, re-joins the podcast to walk us through the various life stages of a gobbler. Donate to wild turkey research: UF Turkey Donation Fund , Auburn Turkey Donation Fund Resources: Goodwin, C. C., et al. (2024). Experimental infection of domestic turk…
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Dr. Rick Gerhold, Associate Professor of Parasitology/Wildlife Diseases at the University of Tennessee, joins us to breakdown common diseases among turkeys and their symptoms, pathways of transmission, and infected biological effects. He also discusses histomonas and how you can get involved in cutting-edge egg research. Dr. Rick Gerhold (rgerhold@…
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Tes Randle Jolly, award-winning professional wildlife and turkey photographer extraordinaire, joins Marcus and Will to share her deep insight and perspective into wild turkey behavior from over 25 years of photographing our favorite bird. Donate to wild turkey research: UF Turkey Donation Fund , Auburn Turkey Donation Fund Tes Jolly (@jovtes) Dr. M…
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Dr. Richard Buccholz, Director of the Center for Biodiversity and Conservation Research at the University of Mississippi, joins Will and Marcus to shed light on the fascinating world of wild turkey behavior. Learn of the interplay between displayed traits and biological fitness, which traits influence sexual selection, and how this information can …
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Dr. Patrick Wightman, Research Scientist at UGA, joins Marcus and Will to reveal results from a recent region-wide collaborative project - across 4 states, 8 study sites, and with over 900 banded birds - assessing the effects of hunting pressure on male survival. Donate to wild turkey research: UF Turkey Donation Fund , Auburn Turkey Donation Fund …
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New data brings to light more pieces of our habitat-predator puzzle. Join as Marcus and Will pull from recent studies to discuss the multifaceted effects of fire on wild turkey survival and how a new approach could knock off two objectives with one flame. Donate to wild turkey research: UF Turkey Donation Fund , Auburn Turkey Donation Fund Resource…
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Dr. Geoff Hill, professor of Biological Sciences at Auburn University, joins Marcus and Will to break down the unique evolutionary biology of our favorite bird. Learn which characteristics hens select for, what make decoys effective, if gene selection is impacted by hunter harvest, the intricacies of the turkey brotherhood, and much more. Donate to…
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Marcus and Will explain why our current data on turkeys supports both sides of this ongoing debate and what is needed to determine whether habitat or predation is to blame. They also discover another interesting link between supplemental feeding and predation, and discuss four studies that would answer most of our questions related to the current d…
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Will and Marcus discuss why they and other biologists are more likely to endorse habitat management, versus predator control, to increase turkey populations. They also cover a study showing trapping can effectively reduce raccoon populations by up to 90% and discuss why that may or may not translate into more turkeys on the landscape. Donate to wil…
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Mark Hatfield, National Director of Science and Planning for NWTF, joins Marcus and Will to discuss how their organization has helped wild turkeys through research involvement, areas of focus throughout the decades, and ongoing programs and events. Resources: Habitat for the Hatch Women in the Outdoors Wheelin’ Sportsman JAKES Program Save the Habi…
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Jason Lupardus, Director of Business Operations and Partnerships for Turkeys for Tomorrow, joins Marcus and Will to reveal TFT’s vision, solution, and strategies for addressing some of the biggest challenges facing the wild turkey. Learn how you can get involved with Turkeys for Tomorrow's citizen-science land management today. TFT: Facebook, Insta…
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Marcus calls Will from the road to reflect upon and breakdown their recent site visit to a landowner managing for deer and turkey, the primary factors weighed when juggling multiple objectives, and when to use which strategies. Please help us by taking our (QUICK) listener survey - Thank you! https://ufl.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_3VR10xcKOMTvZH0 Dr…
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Marcus and Will wrap up our first year of production by reflecting upon the most memorable moments from recording, favorite segments from the season, unexpected feedback from listeners, and our plans for the show moving forward. Please help us by taking our (QUICK) listener survey below. Thank you in advance! https://ufl.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_3…
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Duck Locascio, Forestry Program Manager for the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, joins Marcus and Will to demystify and provide actionable steps to managers interested in improving turkey habitat in bottomland hardwood forests. Resources: Desired Forest Conditions document Lower Mississippi Valley Joint Venture Dr. Marcus Lashley (@D…
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Duck Locascio, Forestry Program Manager for the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, joins Marcus and Will to demystify and provide actionable steps to managers interested in improving turkey habitat in bottomland hardwood forests. Resources: Desired Forest Conditions document Lower Mississippi Valley Joint Venture Dr. Marcus Lashley (@D…
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Dr. Andy Little joins Marcus and Will to break down the study design and year 1 results from his research assessing wild turkey habitat needs across the state of Nebraska. Then, how landscape changes may be impacting population trends and which potential factors are bottlenecking brood survival. Turkey Newsletter 2023 Dr. Andy Little (Publications)…
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Will provides us with updates on his ongoing, hunter-led AL project quantifying fertility indexes in wild turkeys and how it relates to behavior and disease. Then, an update from Marcus on the FL genetic study assessing habitat connectivity and gene flow made possible by hunter-donated feathers. And finally, a look into Will’s next project inspired…
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Marcus and Will kick off the holiday season by reviewing a newly published predator-prey diet selection study, discussing fall diets for turkeys during poor oak masting years, and touching upon the American tradition of fall turkey hunting. Resources Youngmann, et al. (2023). Assessing springtime vertebrate prey of sympatric mesopredators in the so…
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Marcus and Will pull from the literature to discuss the science-based management strategies across fire, silviculture, herbicide, and more, that can help turn your hardwoods into turkeys. Listen to Part 1 of this episode here: https://sites.libsyn.com/453219/WildTurkeyScience/managing-hardwoods-for-turkeys-part-12-52 Resources: Bogdziewicz, M., Cro…
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Marcus and Will pull from the literature to assess various management strategies across fire, silviculture, herbicide, and more, that can help turn your hardwoods into turkeys. Part 2 of this episode releases next Monday. Resources: Bogdziewicz, M., Crone, E. E., Steele, M. A., & Zwolak, R. (2017). Effects of nitrogen deposition on reproduction in …
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Will and Marcus comb through the available literature to analyze the relationships between hardwood forests and wild turkeys. Resources: Alexander et al. (2021). Mesophication of oak landscapes: Evidence, knowledge gaps, and future research. BioScience, 71(5), 531-542. Burk et al. (1990). Wild turkey use of streamside management zones in loblolly p…
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Marcus and Will travel back in time with legendary turkey researchers Dr. Larry Vangilder and Eric Kurzejeski. Join as they discuss the early days of restocking and lessons learned, how hunting regulations changed as populations grew, initial assumptions impacting today’s regulations, challenges they faced as biologists, and thoughts on why we’re s…
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Will and Marcus launch our hardwoods series by discussing oak masting biology. They review studies assessing acorn production variation across and within oak species, discuss study results of wildlife acorn preference, and provide management tools to increase acorn productivity on your land. Resources: Brooke, J. M., Basinger, P. S., Birckhead, J. …
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Marcus and Will wrap up our feeding series by reviewing global drivers of supplemental feeding and breakdown a study reporting positive effects on wild turkey populations from supplemental feed. Resources: Cox, D. T., & Gaston, K. J. (2018). Human–nature interactions and the consequences and drivers of provisioning wildlife. Philosophical Transacti…
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While in Nebraska, Marcus and Will discuss the shared challenges they see across states when trying to integrate multiple objectives into working landscapes. Dr. Marcus Lashley (@DrDisturbance) (Academic Profile) Dr. Will Gulsby (@dr_will_gulsby) (Academic Profile) Turkeys for Tomorrow (@turkeysfortomorrow) UF DEER Lab (@ufdeerlab) (YouTube) Watch …
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Marcus and Will dive deeper into the literature surrounding the potential impacts of feeding on wild turkeys. Join as they discuss the data on risks of feeding across species, predation, pathogens, and contaminants and what we can do to mitigate these risks for turkeys moving forward. Resources: Cooper, S. M., & Ginnett, T. F. (2000). Potential eff…
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Will and Marcus characterize the available data on wildlife feeding across the South and discuss the implications for wild turkeys. Resources: SC 2006 AK 2011 FWC 2019 Land Ethic Dr. Marcus Lashley (@DrDisturbance) (Academic Profile) Dr. Will Gulsby (@dr_will_gulsby) (Academic Profile) Turkeys for Tomorrow (@turkeysfortomorrow) UF DEER Lab (@ufdeer…
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Dr. Kelly Dunning, Associate Professor at Auburn University and Timberline Professor at the Haub School of Environment and Natural Resources, joins Will and Marcus to discuss the complexities associated with conservation policy-making and how we can better integrate wild turkey research and political science moving forward. Listen to Part 1 of this…
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Dr. Kelly Dunning, Associate Professor at Auburn University and Timberline Professor at the Haub School of Environment and Natural Resources, joins Will and Marcus to discuss the complexities associated with conservation policy-making and how we can better integrate wild turkey research and political science moving forward. Part 2 of this episode r…
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Dr. Mike Byrne joins Marcus and Will to discuss the ongoing comprehensive private-land wild turkey research project in northern Missouri studying the effects of nest survival. They also cover important topics related to raccoon movements in relation to hen nesting and density dependence in turkey populations. Listen to Part 1 of this episode (here)…
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Dr. Mike Byrne joins Marcus and Will to discuss the ongoing comprehensive private-land wild turkey research project in northern Missouri studying the effects of nest survival. They also cover important topics related to raccoon movements related to hen nesting and density dependence in turkey populations. Part 2 of this episode releases next Monday…
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Marcus and Will are joined by Jason Hardin, Wild Turkey Program Leader for the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. Listen to learn details on the status of our favorite bird in the Lonestar State. Jason Hardin Jason.hardin@tpwd.texas.gov Dr. Marcus Lashley (DrDisturbance) (Academic Profile) Dr. Will Gulsby (dr_will_gulsby) (Academic Profile) Turke…
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Will and Marcus discuss what not to do on your property when managing for wild turkey. Resources: Wild nesting cover ft. Dr. Craig Harper: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G6xsKyis404&lc=Ugyq5o49_is0gQOzEQl4AaABAg Wild Turkey Habitat Improvements for Leased Land: https://huntinland.libsyn.com/wild-turkey-habitat-improvements-for-leased-land Dr. Marc…
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Marcus and Will discuss the origins of hypotheses related to timing and intensity of spring harvest and how they may affect reproduction. They also discuss the challenges landowners face when establishing property level harvest decisions. Resources: Isabelle, Jason L., et al. "Considerations for timing of spring wild turkey hunting seasons in the s…
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How to science | #37 In this episode, Marcus and Will break down the research process. Join as they discuss the nuts and bolts of experimental design, identifying objectives, how to generate funding, which agencies are involved, financial expenses, isolating and controlling variables, and how you as a citizen can influence research in your state. I…
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We asked and you answered! Join Marcus and Will as they review questions from followers covering brooding cover, disease, decoys, effective trail cam use, timing of fire, and more. Resources: Wild nesting cover ft. Dr. Craig Harper: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G6xsKyis404&lc=Ugyq5o49_is0gQOzEQl4AaABAg Dr. Marcus Lashley (DrDisturbance) (Academi…
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Marcus and Will sit down with Adam Keith and Matt Dye, co-owners, consultants, and fellow podcasters of Land and Legacy. Listen as they share from years of habitat consulting experience on what they’re seeing across landowner landscapes and which factors are the most limiting for the wild turkey. Land & Legacy - https://landandlegacy.tv/ Dr. Marcus…
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Marcus and Will wrap up their time at the Southeast Wild Turkey Working Group conference by discussing their key takeaways, study results from the experts, exciting plans across an array of states, and how you as a hunter can help out. Resources: Londe, David W., et al. "Review of range‐wide vital rates quantifies eastern wild Turkey population tra…
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Marcus and Will sit down at the Southeast Wild Turkey Working Group Meeting with Nick Oakley, Wild Turkey Biologist for Missouri. Join as Nick discloses the state’s turkey history and trends, current status and hunting guidelines, and a breakdown of the ongoing research to assess what’s driving production. Resources: MO Wild Turkey Brook Survey Dr.…
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Marcus and Will recap Dr. Harper’s dense episodes by discussing indicator plants to evaluate success in brood field management. Resources: iNaturalist Seek Forest Plants of the Southeast and Their Wildlife Uses Wildlife Food Plots and Early Successional Plants GeFellers, James Wade, et al. "Seeding is not always necessary to restore native early su…
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Turkeys for Tomorrow Legal Council and board member Carter Weeks joins us to discuss how TFT got started, the vision of the organization, and how you can get involved to make a difference. To learn more about TFT, check out turkeysfortomorrow.org. Dr. Marcus Lashley (DrDisturbance) (Academic Profile) Dr. Will Gulsby (dr_will_gulsby) (Academic Profi…
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Dr. Craig Harper joins to disclose step-by-step instructions on how to implement better brooding and nesting cover on your property. This is an episode you won’t want to miss. Dr. Craig Harper (Website) Dr. Marcus Lashley (DrDisturbance) (Academic Profile) Dr. Will Gulsby (dr_will_gulsby) (Academic Profile) Turkeys for Tomorrow (turkeysfortomorrow)…
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Dr. Craig Harper joins to disclose step-by-step instructions on how to implement better brooding and nesting cover on your property. This is an episode you won’t want to miss. Dr. Craig Harper (Website) Dr. Marcus Lashley (DrDisturbance) (Academic Profile) Dr. Will Gulsby (dr_will_gulsby) (Academic Profile) Turkeys for Tomorrow (turkeysfortomorrow)…
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FWC Wild Turkey Management Program Coordinator Buddy Welch discloses details on the previous and on-going research conducted on wild turkeys. Then, discussion of Florida landowner resources, cost-share programs, and habitat characteristics unique to the state that are vital for turkey population. This is Part 2 of this episode. Resources from the e…
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FWC Wild Turkey Management Program Coordinator Buddy Welch joins us to disclose details on the state’s season frameworks, restocking history, and harvest trends. Then, a look into the previous and on-going research studies conducted on wild turkeys across Florida. This is Part 1 of this episode. Resources from the episode: FWC Wild Turkey Summer Su…
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PA Game Commission wild turkey biologist Mary Jo Caselena joins us to disclose details on their state’s mark recapture study, population trends, and private landowner incentive programs. Then, a look into the largest conducted, multi-state mid-Atlantic hen population study. This is Part 2 for this episode. Resources from the episode: PA Landowner P…
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PA Game Commission wild turkey biologist Mary Jo Caselena joins us to disclose details on their state’s mark recapture study, population trends, and private landowner incentive programs. Then, a look into the largest conducted, multi-state mid-Atlantic hen population study. This is Part 1 of 2 for this episode. Resources from the episode: PA Landow…
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