Wild turkey and upland bird survey for broods and distribution

Help us monitor summer broods and year-round distribution of wild turkeys and upland birds by reporting your observations.

Why report observations of wild turkeys and upland birds?

Female turkey in a meadow at the Klickitat Wildlife Area
Photo by WDFW
Report sightings of wild turkeys and upland game birds to help us understand their productivity and distribution.

This survey provides two important types of information for monitoring and managing these species:

  1. July and August: Brood Survey
    A brood survey provides information on productivity, which is the number of surviving offspring produced in a population. A brood is composed of at least one adult hen with young (chicks or for turkeys, poults). Summer brood survival is a primary factor in population trends for these species. This survey provides information on average brood sizes, the percentage of hens with offspring, and a production index, which is a ratio of the total number of offspring to the total number of adult hens.

    In some species like chukar, females and males cannot easily be distinguished. For these species, broods are defined as the number of adults with chicks, and the production index will be a ratio of the total number of chicks to the total number of adults.
  2. Year round: Distribution Survey
    A distribution survey assesses where birds are located. This information helps managers to track what habitats they’re using, how that might vary seasonally, and where their ranges are expanding or contracting.

How do I report observations?

Please report all sightings of males, females, and offspring. If you’re not sure, please report them as ‘unknown’.

Follow this link to report your observations.

What does ‘Reported Before?’ mean in the survey form?

This question asks whether you think you have seen this particular group of birds before and already reported them. This question only applies during the July and August brood survey period. If you think you have already reported an observation of a particular group of birds that you’re observing again, then state that in the form by reporting ‘yes’.

When should I report observations?

Brood of California quail chicks huddled together
Photo by Susan Jensen
Reporting observations of game birds like these California quail provides important information about brood survival.

You can report observations any time of the year – these will always be useful for monitoring distribution. WDFW is especially interested in reports during July and August since these will provide important information on productivity and brood survival.

What are upland birds?

Upland birds in Washington are ring-necked pheasant, California (valley) quail, mountain quail, chukar, and gray partridge. For information about hunting these species, visit the Upland bird hunting page.

Need help identifying birds?

Here are some great resources for identifying these species and for distinguishing males from females:

For more information about wild turkey brood surveys, visit: How to Participate in Poult Surveys (and Why They Matter) - The National Wild Turkey Federation (nwtf.org)