COLUMBUS — Ohio hunters checked a total of 22,571 wild turkeys during the combined 2018 spring hunting seasons.

According to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR), hunters checked 20,689 birds during the 2018 wild turkey south zone and northeast zone hunting seasons compared to 19,147 birds in 2017.

Tuscarawas County led the state with 810, followed by Monroe with 808. Other area tallies include Guernsey 803, Belmont 738, Harrison 697, and Noble County 585.

Ohio’s 2018 spring wild turkey season was open from Monday, April 23, to Sunday, May 20, in the south zone.

Wild turkeys were extirpated in Ohio by 1904 and were reintroduced in the 1950s by the ODNR Division of Wildlife. Ohio’s first modern-day wild turkey season opened in 1966 in nine counties and now covers the entire state.