Guide Youth Turkey Hunt Program

Know a young adult 12-17 years of age who wants to learn to hunt? The mentored youth turkey hunt is a safe and fun program to introduce youth to the world of hunting. This program is offered jointly by MassWildlife, the Massachusetts State Chapter of the National Wild Turkey Federation, and participating Sportsmen's Clubs. The Youth Turkey Hunt Program consists of a turkey hunt seminar followed by a mentored turkey hunt. This year, the mentored hunt will be on April 27, 2019.

Table of Contents

About the youth turkey hunt program

April 27, 2019 will be the day of the youth turkey hunt

The youth turkey hunt program is open to minors 12 to 17 years of age and includes a turkey hunt seminar and a mentored turkey hunt.

To participate in the hunt the youth must: 

  • Graduate from a Basic Hunter Education course before the day of the hunt. 
  • Complete a mandatory youth turkey seminar before the day of the hunt.
  • Be accompanied by an adult mentor (18 years of age or older) who holds a Massachusetts hunting license and turkey permit.

All hunting laws apply. If the youth participant is 15 years of age or older and they wish to hunt with a shotgun, they must have a valid Massachusetts firearms license. To apply for a firearms license, contact your local police department.

Steps for new participants

To participate in the youth turkey hunt, new participants must be 12-17 years of age and fulfill the following:

  1. Graduate from a Basic Hunter Education course (before the day of the hunt).
  2. Obtain a firearms identification card*.
    • *This step is only required if the participant will be 15-17 years of age on the day of the youth turkey hunt and they wish to hunt with a shotgun.
  3. Submit the New Participant Registration Form to MassWildlife.
    • This form registers the new participant in the mandatory youth turkey hunt seminar. 
  4. Complete the mandatory turkey hunt seminar before the day of the hunt.This is a one-time requirement. Youth who have completed the seminar in prior years already meet this requirement.
  5. Find a mentor. Mentors can be any adult licensed hunter (18 years of age or older). Only one minor per licensed adult is permitted. If a participant does not have a mentor (such as a friend or family member) to take them hunting on the day of the hunt, they will be paired with a mentor by the club conducting the turkey hunt seminar.
  6. Obtain the necessary license, permits, and authorizations through MassFishHunt.

Find a mandatory youth turkey seminar

The youth turkey hunt seminar is designed to provide young hunters with specialized turkey hunting training and instruction, as well as reinforce what they learned in Basic Hunter Education. Young hunters will have the opportunity to practice all aspects of a safe hunt including calling, how to properly set-up, identifying your target and what’s beyond it, turkey biology and turkey hunting regulations.

Below is a list of clubs that will be conducting the mandatory youth hunt seminar. All new participants must complete this training before the day of the hunt. You do not need to be a member of the club to register or attend this training.

To register for a seminar

  1. Choose a club from the list below.
  2. Write the name of the club on your New Participant Registration Form next to "Club Hosting".
  3. Submit the form to MassWildlife's Hunter Education Program.
  4. Once your form is received, the youth will be registered for the seminar you selected and you will be sent an email confirmation.

Club & Address

Date of Class

Conway Sportsman’s Club
193 Elmer Road
Conway, MA 01341
Click here for directions

Saturday
April 6th
8 a.m.–4 p.m.

Fitchburg Sportsmen's Club
289 Ridge State Road
Ashburnham, MA 01430
Click here for directions

Saturday
April 6th
8 a.m.–12 p.m.
Stockbridge Sportsmen's Club
24 E Stockbridge Lee Rd
Stockbridge, MA 01266
Click here for directions
Saturday
April 6th
7 a.m.–Noon
Norco Sportsman’s Club
91 Houghton Road

Princeton, MA 01541
Click here for directions
Saturday
April 13th
8:30 a.m.–3 p.m.
Worthington Rod & Gun Club
458 Dingle Road
Worthington, MA 01098
Click here for directions

Saturday
April 13th
9 a.m.–2 p.m.

Wrentham Sportsmen’s Association
7 Madison Street
Plainville, MA 02762
Click here for directions
Sunday
April 14th
9 a.m.–2 p.m.

What happens after the youth completes the mandatory youth turkey seminar?
Upon completing a Basic Hunter Education course and the youth turkey hunt seminar, a special authorization will be established in your customer profile within MassFishHunt. If you don't already have a customer profile, one will be created for you. This authorization will allow you to purchase either a Youth Turkey Permit (for minors 12-14 years of age) or a Youth Turkey Authorization (for minors 15-17 years of age).

You are required to obtain this special authorization in order to participate in the hunt. See below for detailed instructions on how to obtain your permit/authorization.

Key Actions for Find a mandatory youth turkey seminar

Obtain your turkey permit/authorization for the hunt

New participants
Upon completion of a Basic Hunter Education course and a youth turkey seminar, a special authorization will be established through MassFishHunt. This authorization is typically available 1-2 weeks after the youth participant completes a youth turkey hunt seminar. 

Returning participants
If you completed a youth turkey hunt seminar in a previous year, you already meet this requisite and the required permit/authorization is available now through MassFishHunt.

Instructions

Participants ages 12-14 years old:

Follow the steps below or click here for detailed instructions.

  1. Log in to MassFishHunt using the youth's customer account.
  2. Click on License Sales (green button to the right of your screen).
  3. Once you click License Sales, the Customer Electronic Signature box will open, you must hit accept to get into License Sales.
  4. Click on Hunting Permits and Stamps from the menu on the left.
  5. Add the Youth Turkey Permit.
  6. Checkout when you're ready.
  7. Print your turkey permit.

Participants ages 15-17 years old:

Follow the steps below or click here for detailed instructions.

  1. Purchase a Massachusetts Minor Hunting or Sporting license, in person, at a license vendor. Minor licenses cannot be purchased online. To find a license vendor near you, visit Mass.gov/FishHuntLicenseMap.
    • Tip: If you have already completed Basic Hunter Education and the Youth Turkey Hunt Seminar (by the time you are purchasing your minor hunting license in-person), you can also ask the license vendor to add a turkey permit and youth turkey authorization to your customer profile. If you do this, you can skip steps 2 through 9 below. 
  2. Log in to MassFishHunt using the youth's customer account.
  3. Click on license sales (green button to the right of your screen).
  4. Once you click License Sales, the Customer Electronic Signature box will open, you must hit accept to get into License Sales.
  5. Click on Hunting Permits and Stamps from the menu on the left.
  6. Add a Turkey Permit (tip: you must add the turkey permit to your "cart" before you add the Youth Turkey Authorization).
  7. Add the Youth Turkey Authorization Ages 15-17 (you must add a turkey permit before you add the authorization).
  8. Checkout when you're ready.
  9. Print your turkey permit.

Who can be a mentor?

Mentors can be any adult licensed hunter (18 years of age or older). Only one minor per licensed adult is permitted. 

Mentors must have the following in order to participate with a youth on the day of the youth turkey hunt:

  • A valid Massachusetts Hunting or Sporting License. Visit a license vendor or log in to MassFishHunt to purchase a license.
  • A Turkey Permit. Visit a license vendor or log in to MassFishHunt to purchase a turkey permit.
  • If mentoring a minor 12-14 years of age hunting with a shotgun, the adult must have a firearms license. No firearms license is needed by 12-14 year old minors.

Requirements for the day of the hunt

April 27, 2019 is this year's youth turkey hunt day

Youth Turkey Hunt Participants ages 12 to 14 must:

  • Have a government-issued Basic Hunter Education certificate of completion. 
  • Have a Youth Turkey Permit.
  • Be accompanied by a licensed adult mentor (18 years of age or older) mentoring the youth participant. 
  • The mentoring adult must have a valid Massachusetts hunting or sporting license, a turkey permit, and any permits required to possess a firearm if the minor is hunting with a shotgun.

Youth Turkey Hunt Participants ages 15 to 17 must:

  • Have a government-issued Basic Hunter Education certificate of completion.
  • Have a Minor Hunting license. This must be purchased, in person, at a license vendor. Minor licenses cannot be purchased online. To find a license vendor near you, visit Mass.gov/FishHuntLicenseMap.
  • Have a Regular Turkey Permit.
  • Have a Youth Turkey Authorization.
  • Have a Firearms Identification Card (FID) if hunting with a shotgun. Firearms licenses are issued by your local police department.
  • Be accompanied by a licensed adult mentor (18 years of age or older) mentoring the youth participant. 
  • The mentoring adult must have a valid Massachusetts hunting or sporting license and their own turkey permit.

More information

  • Youth turkey permits are valid, not only for the day of the mentored youth turkey hunt, but also for the entire spring turkey season.
  • All hunting laws apply
    • Only one wild turkey can be harvested per day. 
    • You must report your harvest within 48 hours either online or at a check station. For instructions on how to report your wild turkey harvest, click here.
    • An official safety sticker must be adhered to any firearm being used to hunt wild turkey such that it is visible to the hunter when sighting down the barrel (typically placed on the tang). If new or replacement sticker is needed, send self-addressed, stamped envelope to any MassWildlife office.
    • To learn more about wild turkey hunting regulations, click here.
  • We encourage parents/guardians to take part in the hunt if they can. Legal guardians can involve themselves as much as possible and are invited to sit in with their child when they take the mandatory youth turkey hunt seminar.
  • Hunters 12-17 years of age have many opportunities to hunt in addition to the youth turkey hunt day. To learn more, get the Massachusetts Guide to Hunting, find additional outdoor skills classes, or learn more about the hunting regulations for minors.

If you are uncertain on what to do to ensure your youth hunter is ready for the mentored youth turkey hunt or if you have questions about the youth turkey hunt program, please contact the MassWildlife Field HQ by calling (508) 389-6300 or emailing mass.wildlife@mass.gov

Additional Resources for More information

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