A wild turkey in the woods of Elizabeth A. Morton...

A wild turkey in the woods of Elizabeth A. Morton National Wildlife Refuge in Noyack on June 12, 2010. Credit: Michael E. Ach

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation is encouraging Long Islanders, as well as residents all over New York State, to help in its annual count of wild turkeys.

DEC commissioner Joe Martens is calling on state residents to help count the birds during the month of August. Surveys can be accessed online, by email or by phone.

“Citizen science efforts such as these provide our wildlife managers with invaluable data and give people the opportunity to partner with DEC to help monitor state wildlife resources,” said Martens in a news release announcing the survey. “I encourage residents to take the time to record their observations of turkeys or pheasants while exploring the forests and fields around their home or driving through New York’s beautiful landscapes this summer.”

Surveys will be used to determine harvest potentials in the fall, which can be affected during the breeding and brood-rearing seasons by weather and habitat conditions.

Those who wish to participate in the survey need only document the sex and age of all birds.

The results from the 2012 wild turkey survey showed a population decrease on Long Island for the birds since 2007. The survey has been in place since 1996.

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