WOODRUFF - Hunters can decide whether to keep their turkey or donate it to families in need.
The DNR started a turkey donation program last year with hopes of expanding it this spring.
This year, 16 counties across the state are participating in the program.
All hunters need to do is drop the bird off at a participating processor.
"Hunters don't need to sign up for it. If they harvest a turkey, they need to legally register it and store that bird in a cool location. They can look on our DNR's website to find a list of processors in their area that are accepting turkeys," said DNR Wildlife Damage Specialist Brad Koele.
Donated turkey meat will be given to local food pantries.
"During spring turkey hunting, there's anywhere from 40,000 to 45,000 turkeys harvested. So, not a large volume but there's opportunity there for hunters to donate and provide those turkeys to families in need," said Koele.
Hunters have until May 31 to drop of turkey carcasses at participating meat processors.