Wild Things: Bonus Turkey Tags Go on Sale March 21

Zone 2 leftovers? More than 15,000 are available for the final two weeks

by KEVIN NAZE, [email protected], Peninsula Pulse contributor

If you forgot to apply for a spring wild turkey hunting tag or want a second helping of leftovers, jot “March 21, 10 am” on your calendar. That’s when more than 15,000 Zone 2 bonus tags will be available: 7,394 in the fifth week (period E) and 8,049 in the sixth (period F). 

Statewide, close to 100,000 leftovers will go on sale March 20-25. They’ll be availble for one zone per day on a first-come, first-served basis, with a limit of one per hunter per day. Zone 1 tags are first on March 20. All remaining tags will go on sale Saturday, March 25, beginning at 10 am.

You must purchase a spring turkey license and stamp privilege in order to buy a bonus tag. To save time, purchase that before the 10 am start each day.

New licenses are already available at more than a dozen locations throughout Door and Kewaunee counties (see where at or via the online licensing center at

Turkey hunting is included in a variety of licenses. For example, Conservation Patron and Junior Conservation Patron license buyers have their spring and fall application fees, turkey licenses and stamp privilege included. 

The separate leftover bonus tags cost $10 for residents and $15 for nonresidents. 

Zones 1 and 3 have more than 70,000 extras for sale in four time periods. Zone 4 has more than 12,000 left in three time periods, and Zone 5 nearly 3,000 in two periods. Zones 6 and 7 have no leftovers available.

The first regular hunting period begins April 19; the last May 24. All run seven days.

This year’s youth hunting weekend is set for April 15-16. All eligible youth must have a regular season tag. If they get a bird during the youth hunt, that tag then becomes invalid for the period for which it was authorized.

Spring-Ahead Fishing

If you’ll be fishing this weekend – and like to be out at dawn – don’t forget about the daylight saving time (DST) switch early Sunday morning. Set your clocks forward an hour before going to bed Saturday night. DST ends Sunday, Nov. 5, at 2 am, when we’ll gain that hour back.

Speaking of fishing, there are still cautious walk-on opportunities for pike, perch, walleye and whitefish on Green Bay, but it’s day to day. Check with a local bait shop for the latest advice.

Open-water action is picking up, with some good catches of trout reported in the Lake Michigan shallows, as well as open stretches of the Ahnapee River. The busiest spot in northeastern Wisconsin is the Fox River below De Pere, where hundreds of anglers have been fishing from boats and from shore for spawn-minded walleyes. 

Volunteer Opportunities

You can learn more about wildlife and invasive species while helping the Door County Land Trust to care for its preserves through upcoming field days and projects. The first work day, March 21, 10 am – 12 pm, is at the Oak Road Nature Preserve. Learn about and engage in both trail and nest-box maintenance, and all necessary equipment will be provided. Learn more at

You can also join The Ridges Sanctuary staff and volunteers once a week, May through October, 9-11:30 am, as part of the Wednesday Work Crew. Find out more at

Road-Trip Sport Shows

The state’s longest-running outdoor trade show, the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel Sports Show, is running for the 82nd year March 9-12 at the Expo Center at Wisconsin State Fair Park. 

Two other shows are being held this weekend: Canoecopia, the largest paddle-sports consumer event in the world, at the Alliant Energy Center in Madison; and the Central Wisconsin RV & Camping Show at the Convention & Expo Center in Rothschild.

Next up are the Wisconsin Musky Expo, set for March 17-19 in Rothschild, followed by the Open Season Sportsman’s Expo March 24-26 at the Kalahari Resort & Convention Center in Wisconsin Dells. 

Big Lake Tourneys

The Baileys Harbor Brown Trout Tournament is fewer than five weeks away, April 13-16, with fishing allowed in the Door and Kewaunee county waters of Green Bay and Lake Michigan.

Meanwhile, the Reel Steel Challenge is booked for June 10 out of Sturgeon Bay, with weigh-in at The Lodge at Leathem Smith; the 41st annual Kewaunee/Door Salmon Tournament July 14-23; the King of Kewaunee Salmon & Trout Super Derby Aug. 5; and the Shanty Days Fishing Contest at Algoma Aug. 10-13.

Migration Underway

The popular BirdCast migration dashboard is back to help you track the progress of your favorite spring species. Sandhill cranes, red-winged blackbirds and robins are among the early returners already being seen in some areas. You can review the data at to see how migration locally or statewide compares to previous years’ averages, and explore around the country.

Birding Program April 29

Details are still being set for Algoma’s annual Bird City celebration on April 29 at the Algoma Youth Club. For now, the committee is looking to feature some of your best bird photos. Include your name, the bird species, the general location of the photograph and the date it was taken when you email your photo to [email protected].