If you’ve never thought much about scoring your wild turkey or simply don’t know what measurements factor into the score, all it takes is four easy steps to get it done.
The NWTF maintains the Wild Turkey Records database, which includes rankings in the following groups:
- Total Score
- Beard Length
- Spur Length
There’s also an interactive map on the NWTF’s website that filters data entered by wild-turkey hunters who have registered their birds. Who knows, maybe this spring’s bird is worthy of a top ranking in the record books.
Weigh your bird in pounds and ounces and convert ounces to decimal form.
Measure each spur. Spurs must be measured along the outside center, from the point at which the spur protrudes from the scaled leg skin to the tip of the spur. Add both spur measurements and multiply the combined length of the spurs by 10. This is the number of points you receive for the turkey’s spurs.
Measure the beard length (a beard must be measured from the center point of the protrusion of the skin to the tip) and convert it to decimal form. Next, multiply the beard length figure by 2; this is the number of points you receive for the beard length. If you have an atypical bird (multiple beards), measure each beard, convert them to a decimal number, then add those figures together and multiply by two. This is the number of points you receive for your turkey’s beards.
Add together the weight, the points for spurs and points for beard(s): This is the score you receive for your turkey. You can also tally your score by using the Scoring Calculator.
Top 20 Counties With Most Registered Wild Turkeys
If you search the Top 20 Counties with the most record birds harvested, you’ll see Florida and Nebraska lead the way.
* Data as of 2019 records.
BONUS: Turkey Calling Tips
Box calls are a great options for beginner turkey callers. They're easy to use and more versatile than most people think. Jeff Propst has been turkey hunting for over 40 years, and one of his favorite calls to use is still a box call. In this video, he discusses different kinds of box calls, and the different kinds of turkey sounds you can make on them. Whether you are new to turkey calling/hunting, or been in the woods for years, consider learning how to use a box call to add one more weapon in your arsenal.
Featured photo: National Wild Turkey Federation