A western Iowa city could become the first in the state to allow bowhunting of turkeys. Council Bluffs Public Health Director Donn Dierks is leading the effort to reduce the wild turkey population within the city limits.
“In the last several years, our wild turkey population has pretty much exploded,” Dierks said. “We’ve got a large number of turkeys that are becoming a nuisance with the city limits of Council Bluffs.” The turkeys leave behind a mess in resident’s yards, driveways and sidewalks.
“They also are low-flying, so when your car comes across one…we’ve had several broken windshields where the turkey have hit those,” Dierks said. The turkey hunting season would be similar to the city’s urban deer management program which has been in place the last eight years. It would apply only to female turkeys and bowhunters who would like to participate would need to take a proficiency test.
“They have to pass that proficiency test, as well as an online bowhunting class that the DNR offers,” Dierks said. A formal plan for the urban turkey management program will likely be presented to the Council Bluffs City Council later this month, according to Dierks. He believes Council Bluffs would be the first Iowa city to enact such a season, but adds other communities are considering the idea.