OLYMPIA - Washington state spring turkey hunting enthusiasts can purchase raffle tickets to enter a special drawing for the chance to hunt one month longer and take an additional three birds in 2004.
Also this year, young hunters will also be able to participate in a new spring turkey-hunting season, April 10-11, according to the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW).
Raffle tickets are $5.43 each and are on sale at any hunting license agent throughout the state, via a toll-free phone line at 1-866-246-9453, or via the Internet at http://fishhunt.dfw.wa.gov/. The deadline to purchase raffle tickets is March 7, and WDFW will notify winners by March 15.
The raffle helps generate funds that WDFW can use for additional turkey management in the state, said Mick Cope, WDFW upland game section manager.
Two winners, selected at random, will receive a permit allowing them to hunt from April 1 through May 31, which is one month longer than the standard April 15-May 15 turkey season. Winners will also receive three turkey transport tags that can be used to take up to two bearded turkeys in eastern Washington and one bearded turkey in western Washington within the one turkey per day bag limit.
Winners must purchase a 2004 small game hunting license, which includes a standard turkey tag, to receive raffle permits and raffle tags. Winners can also purchase two additional standard turkey tags, giving them the opportunity to harvest up to six turkeys for the season.
A small-game license is $32.85 for residents, or $17.52 in conjunction with the purchase of a big-game license. Youth hunters under the age of 16 can buy a small-game license for $16.43. Non-resident hunters can purchase a small-game license for $164.25, or $87.60 in conjunction with the purchase of a big-game license.
The youth spring turkey season will be open to hunters under 16 years of age and will take place the weekend before the general spring turkey season. Game Management Units (GMUs) open during the youth season will be: 101, 113, 117, 130, 133, 139, 145-154, 166, 175, 186, 204, 215, 218, 242, 245, 249-251, 269, 328, 329, 346, 352, 360-368, 382, 506, 554, 556, 568, 574, 588, 633, 651 and 660-666.
Standard hunting methods, including using only a shotgun or bow and arrow, as well as all other turkey hunting regulations apply to both the special raffle and the youth seasons.