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Nov 17, 2009 6:50 PMPublication: The East Hampton Press

Turkeys in East Hampton: Friends or food?

Nov 17, 2009 6:50 PM

Turkey season is here, but for the first time in generations, that means more on Eastern Long Island than just a Thanksgiving dinner.

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation will hold its first turkey hunting season here for five days from November 21 to November 25, and hunters who receive their small game license and a turkey tag will be permitted to take just one bird, just in time for next Thursday’s feast.

But Bill Crain, an animal rights activist who last year held a hunger strike outside of East Hampton Town Hall to protest the town’s expanded deer hunting area, successfully convinced the Town Board on November 17 to send a letter to the DEC asking to be allowed to give more input on whether turkeys can be hunted on town-owned land.

Mr. Crain said that the birds are intelligent, playful animals and also the number-one predator of ticks, providing a vital service to an area plagued with Lyme disease. He said that the DEC made the decision to allow the turkey hunt after it released 75 wild turkeys on the East End several years ago, whose population has since ballooned to 3,000.

Mr. Crain said that the DEC issued a press release in August stating that the hunting would be primarily on town land.

“Legally, it sounds like you can’t do anything, but you could at least take a stand,” he said. “They may say ‘no,’ but at least you take a stand that there’s some integrity to the Town Board process. The DEC is acting like big shots, like they can dictate whatever they want.”

Town Board member Pat Mansir agreed to draft a letter to the DEC asking the agency to reconsider its position on hunting turkeys on town land.

“Next year, we’ll stop it all together,” said Mr. Crain.

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They are beautiful animals, i would love to shoot them!!
By jonnyhampton (29), Southampton on Nov 17, 09 7:13 PM
1 member liked this comment

The fact that we are mean predators by nature does not mean that we have to act naturally. All of the world's religions of which I am aware indoctrinate their believers in the virtue of limiting that behavioral drive. Refraining from killing innocent animals whose deaths would harm the human population as well as the avian should make sense to everyone including killers.

By highhatsize (4217), East Quogue on Nov 18, 09 1:29 AM
1 member liked this comment
By Frank Wheeler (1826), Northampton on Nov 18, 09 6:38 AM
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By we could run this town! (129), wonderful Wainscott on Nov 18, 09 7:27 AM
I've noticed for the first time a few this summer on Rt 104 between Old Riverhead Road and Route 105. I also saw one in the Barrens near Gabreski airport. Guess the range is expanding.
By diogenes (57), westhampton on Nov 18, 09 12:47 PM
What those opposed to hunting the fowl have failed to address, is why the turkeys were introduced to the area.

They are "game birds."
By Frank Wheeler (1826), Northampton on Nov 18, 09 1:47 PM
Ah, the Turkeys were reintroduced to become game. And thwey shoukld be. There is a culling that shoukld take place, and it is not, as there are few predators, exceopt us, who are here, now.

The VOLUNTARY tax on guns, ammunition, fishing equipment introduced long before the modern "envionmerntalist" was even born along with private sportsman/hunting organizations have made this possible.
By Lost Tribe (66), East Hampton on Nov 18, 09 2:00 PM

Your are quite wrong. More people have been killed in the name of political ideology than in the name of god. Remember WWII.

I cannot speak for all religions, but the Christian religions' primary behavioral tenet is, "Don't be mean". It doesn't prohibit the killing of animals but neither does it advocate it. The Old Testament gives mankind, "dominion" over the animals buy leaves it to us to decide what that signifies.

In any case, belief in a religion is not ...more
By highhatsize (4217), East Quogue on Nov 18, 09 4:00 PM
1 member liked this comment
oh, heathens don't count
By youteast (11), East Hampton on Nov 24, 09 8:42 AM
gobble gobble thanks for giving
By asurest (117), easthampton on Nov 18, 09 6:05 PM

Psychopathy: is a personality disorder whose hallmark is a lack of empathy. . . [Wikipedia]


1 : the imaginative projection of a subjective state into an object so that the object appears to be infused with it
2 : the action of understanding, being aware of, being sensitive to, and vicariously experiencing the feelings, thoughts, and experience of another of either the past or present without having the feelings, thoughts, and experience fully ...more
By highhatsize (4217), East Quogue on Nov 18, 09 8:07 PM
1 member liked this comment

I think that the numbers that either of us could come up with are soft, depending on the definitions of warfare casualties and of religion. I will grant that millions have been killed for religious reasons, in whole or in part.

I object to killing turkeys for ethical rather than religious reasons. However, to speak of the purely practical, turkeys eat deer ticks. (Remember the article about the local official who successfully introduced guinea hens to a park with this ...more
By highhatsize (4217), East Quogue on Nov 20, 09 3:39 PM
Is it sport hunting if you eat what you shoot? In this economy the cost of a shot gun shell is a fraction the cost of a bird at the store. I know people right here on the east end that have a very tough time having to buy food. Nature offers it up free. If they didn't hunt they would have a long hungary winter.Not every one can just write a check.
' There is a place for all God's creatures. Right next to the potatoes and gravy!!!!!!
By double-D (96), southampton on Nov 25, 09 10:32 PM
There are way too many deers and turkeys out here. With no natural predeators they need to be thinned
By razza5350 (1911), East Hampton on Nov 18, 09 8:56 PM
Roasted Wild Turkey

10-12 ServingsPrep: 10 min. Bake: 3-1/2 hours Ingredients
1 wild turkey (10 to 15 pounds)
2 large apples, quartered
6 to 8 medium red potatoes, quartered
2 pound baby carrots
2 medium onions, sliced
2 cups water
1-1/2 teaspoons seasoned salt
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1/2 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup French salad dressing
1/4 cup barbecue sauce
2 tablespoons ketchup
2 tablespoons steak sauce
1 tablespoon lemon ...more
By NSea (10), Southampton on Nov 19, 09 8:38 AM
I hate to whistleblow....but wild turkey tastes like crap..stringy, gamey, and prone to parasitic infection...Those hunters are going to be disappointed.
I think more satisfaction would be gained by consuming some real Wild Turkey at home...with a nice farm-raised turkey dinner!
By nemesis (4), Southampton on Nov 19, 09 1:30 PM
Don't fox prey on turkey? So maybe when the mange problem is on the rise, killing off the fox, then the turkey population expands?
Conversely, if the fox population rebounds, then maybe the turkeys are less plentiful?

By easthamptoner (34), easy hampton on Nov 19, 09 4:33 PM
I can't believe anybody would eat wild turkey and wild goose. They taste disgusting!
By btdt (449), water mill on Nov 19, 09 10:07 PM
"Turkeys in East Hamton: Friends or food?" Answer: Both-friends and food!
By UNITED states CITIZEN (207), SOUTHAMPTON on Nov 21, 09 6:03 AM