Hunters throughout upstate New York are preparing for the open of this year's spring turkey season.

Starting May 1st, turkey hunters can begin bagging birds using shotguns, handguns and bows, provided they have a turkey hunting permit in addition to their regular hunting license. Bullets cannot be used, but shot sizes between No. 2 and No. 8 are allowed.

The Department of Environmental Conservation urges anyone shooting a turkey to fill out the tags provided with their permit. In addition, hunters may only take two bearded turkeys during the spring season, but only one per day.

Those that do kill a turkey also must report their harvest within seven days. There are two ways to file the report, either by calling (866) 426-3778 or by filling out a report online, here.

Last spring, about 19,000 birds were taken throughout upstate New York, with nearly 500 killed in Oneida County. Number in Oneida County have fallen significantly since hitting a decade high of 1,225, in 2009.

For more information regarding this season's turkey hunting campaign, click here.

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