Teach me!

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Teach me!

Postby 2500hdon37s » Sun Feb 05, 2012 11:53 am

I've only been turkey hunting 1 time in my like and I know they are very smart birds. I have a gun and #4 3in turkey loads to go. so teach me the basics of turkey hunting! I really dont know much more than ya set up a decoy or 2 and sit at the stump of a tree and wait, maybe call.
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Re: Teach me!

Postby Cujo1 » Sun Feb 05, 2012 8:20 pm

O.K. here we go! I love killing turkeys and kill or guide people ot many each year! The first place your messing up is thinking a turkey is smart, their not, they are wary yes but not smart. The difference a smart bird wouldn't come to a turkey call when it is the hens job to come to him. However, they are scared of everything and choose to run rather than stand and stare at it like a stupid deer. Turkey hunting is 95% woodsmanship and 5% calling! Scouting is everything, learn where they are, learn what they are doing and why, how many toms, how many jakes, and how many hens are in the area. Don't put all of your apples in one basket, locate a number of different areas and birds. I have already started for April, Know Your Birds! In each area there will be areas where turkeys want to be, find them! I call these my killing spots, common sense says be where they want to be right, so be there! Once you have an idea where to be then it is time to set up. Your set up will make or break you every time! The first time you see the turkey you should be able to kill him! If he can stand and look at your set up from 100 yards away and doesn't see a hen, he isn't coming, make him come look! Calling is about rythym. When chicks are born they start with a kee kee, it is a whistle, they will use this same rythym forever. Certain trukeys work to certain call sounds in different areas or even different years and days. My to go to calls are a Lynch fool proof box call and a Mad aluminizer. Day i day out those are my two best for here. I also use a hs cuttin 2.5 for a mouth call. Find a call that the birds like and stick with it. But don't be afraid to change if needed. Call sparingly at first and build it up if needed and make them look for you. Decoys can help you or hurt you depending on the bird, your situation and what the birds want. I have found a struttin jake is my best decoy or a non strut jake. I don't have much luck with hen decoys. If I use a hen decoy it would be a feeding hen and not the upright alert ones for obvious reasons. Out of breath I'll add more later :thumbsup:
All turkeys must die!


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Re: Teach me!

Postby Cujo1 » Sun Feb 05, 2012 8:39 pm

Gun. Anything will kill a turkey, they are not tough. The problem is your aiming at the brain and spine which is similar to a walnut with a pencil under it. Pattern your gun, looking for two things. Does your gun shoot where it points? if it doesn't center the pattern where you are shooting, good luck. Second, you need a dense pattern at whatever range you are going to shoot just like ducks or geese. Start with a turkey choke shove in some shells and see what happens. I shoot at 40 yards. I use a undertaker choke with Remington 4x6 duplex out of my Mossy 500 with a 22" turkey barell. Don't worry about speed worry about pellet count.1 7/8 oz loads will usually pattern better than 2 oz loads. I don't shoot hevi shot like the "pro's" because I don't get good enough patterns with my combo so why change. Learn to shoot with your opposite hand for birds that come in on the wrong side(common) It is easier to switch your gun with practice than turn completely around. Give me some questions and I wlill answer, i love killing turkeys they explode really cool!
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Re: Teach me!

Postby pete/pmr » Mon Feb 06, 2012 7:36 am

I do not know about turkey behavior out your way,what I do know is that turkeys like to go into clearings after a evening of being rained on to fan out and sun themselve,(great time to scout),a good spotting scope,bino's,will be a good plus and long range scouting works best for me,less likely to spook birds and disturb thier routines! If anything you want to keep them doing what they do every day,until the time comes for you too slip in and make a kill! Best thing too do is pump locals for info about birds behavior in your area,what types of food sources are available too them,and head out months before the season to prospect possible properties to hunt and secure permission from land owners! Remember you will not be the only turkey hunter who is seeing the birds and there may be other hunters with permission to hunt those properties also! Scouting birds is best done 2 hour before day light,so you can hear them gobbling off the roost,and 2 hours before sun set!The sun set time is so you have time enough to locate birds feeding in the openings before going to roost,then watch the path they take to go too roost,then listen for them to gobble off the roost,this helps you locate a general area the birds are spending the night,so in the morning ,(that two hours I was talking about),you can work your way in closer to that area under cover of darkness,do not use a headlamp or bright flashlight,try to get there in the dark,as close as you can,find a spot and settle down an hour before daybreak,so any noise you did make on your hike will allow time for the birds to calm down ,the tom's will gobble once the hens start flying down to start thier day,shortly after that, toms will fly down,just make sure you are well camo'd and stay still,turkeys have amazing eye sight! Once on the ground toms will gobble,you will know if they are on the ground or still in the tree from the sound of the gobble,louder sounding gobbles are usually because they are high up in a tree on a side hill facing south, southeast,east,to catch the first sunlight,when they fly down the gobbles will sound muffled farther away,this usually means one of two things,he is on the ground or facing away from you in the roost,hens will usually fly down and walk back up towards where the tom is still roosted,then he will fly down once he see's his hens down bellow him,or hears them clucking and purring! The hens are busy feeding and are focused on food only scratching and purring is something they do when searchng for food or content,feeling secure and or on a food source,so remember cover, concealment,staying very still,and waiting ,patients is the key,and when the toms stop gobbling it is because they are traveling too hens,are with hens,or are otherwise content,but it does not mean they are not coming in too your calling,(do not call loudly or too often),sometimes they come in silently and cautiously,so they do not gobble as ofter,and when a tom gobbles usually hens go to him,you are trying to make him come too you,and if he is alone and trying to find hens he will gobble,so if it gets quiet out there and you do not hear gobbling wait,once he gets done with the hens he will gobble agian looking for more hens too breed or hens that might be receptive to his want to breed! Sometime it take 10 minutes sometimes hours! Good luck and,Welcome to the addiction!
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Re: Teach me!

Postby 2500hdon37s » Mon Feb 06, 2012 9:52 am

thanks for the info guys! I know they have very good eye sight, and i'm going to try and see if I cant hunt my boss' deer land where I mowed hay over the summer. it has lots of hollers and and such and some good woodland. and I'm assuming the old logging roads may be good for me here.

I also plan to pattern my turkey loads when I pattern all of my guns and chokes here in a few weeks, Im wondering if i'll want my 870 or maxus!

I'm also starting to look for decoys and calls
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Re: Teach me!

Postby waterdogds » Tue Feb 07, 2012 6:42 am

A good place to start would be those fields where you mowed hay. Big toms are ego driven. They love to get on the edge of fields and strut, showing off and being highly visible to incoming hens.. Maybe try a full strut decoy if you find that the birds in your area are using those fields. I recently switched to stick and string when after turkeys. I bought a double bull blind and got after them. The first gobbler that I killed with my bow was in a plowed over peanut field with a full strut decoy. Big gobbler wasn't going to let another tom strut on his field. Sucked him right in within 10 yds. Good luck
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Re: Teach me!

Postby Indawoods » Tue Feb 07, 2012 9:27 pm

here you go 2500. here's a link to one of my local sites threads that is an informative sticky at the top of the turkey forum. lots of good info.

http://www.bayoubucks.com/forum/showthread.php?t=6268
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Re: Teach me!

Postby ICDEDTURKES » Wed Feb 08, 2012 10:46 am

Thousands upon thousands of pages of posts could fill this forum with advice for a new hunter.. I would highly recommend you read Ray Eye's "Practical Turkey hunting strategies" It is very informative for the new hunter as well provides some different perspectives for veteran hunters.. The book should provide a good basic understanding of the wild turkey and its hunting, and will allow you to come back and ask more specific questions regarding different aspects of the sports..

You can purchase it here, but I believe you can read the whole thing as well. http://books.google.com/books?id=ukYqfB3PmfIC&printsec=frontcover#v=onepage&q&f=false
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Re: Teach me!

Postby luie b » Wed Feb 08, 2012 5:27 pm

I don't have a ton of experience with "succesful" turkey hunts but have hunted turkeys since I was 10. Having only killed 1 bird in all that time (yea, i know, sounds worse than it is but in all those years I can't even begin to count how many turkeys we've had hang up at like 60 yards) I don't have a lot of advice in how to get them to commit because that's what I really need to know how to do. Anyway my dad is the turkey hunter in the family and from the few dozen turkeys he's gotten he always says that a decoy is usually unnecessary and that the calling is more what a hunter should worry about. I sometimes use a decoy but what I can advise you is that turkeys like the calling a lot better than a good decoy. So for you I'd get a box call or two and maybe a diagphram if you can learn how to use one.
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Re: Teach me!

Postby Indawoods » Wed Feb 08, 2012 6:00 pm

luie b wrote:I don't have a ton of experience with "succesful" turkey hunts but have hunted turkeys since I was 10. Having only killed 1 bird in all that time (yea, i know, sounds worse than it is but in all those years I can't even begin to count how many turkeys we've had hang up at like 60 yards) I don't have a lot of advice in how to get them to commit because that's what I really need to know how to do. Anyway my dad is the turkey hunter in the family and from the few dozen turkeys he's gotten he always says that a decoy is usually unnecessary and that the calling is more what a hunter should worry about. I sometimes use a decoy but what I can advise you is that turkeys like the calling a lot better than a good decoy. So for you I'd get a box call or two and maybe a diagphram if you can learn how to use one.


tone your calling volume down as they come in close and quit calling as frequently. :thumbsup:
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Re: Teach me!

Postby waterswater96 » Wed Feb 08, 2012 8:43 pm

Turkeys are a hard bird to kill. If you move even a little bit when a turkey is near your out of luck you need to be ready from the point you heaar him till he comes in. You don't need decoys ive killed a toatal of 5 birds out of mabey 6years hunting them. Only one i used decoys for I killed 3 by myself 2 my father called in. When calling one once you are sure he's gobbling to you shut up. dont call but mabey every 10- 15 minutes. If he shuts up dont move alot of the time hunters make mistake by moving when the bird was on the way we've done it 2 times in last two years so stay still it might even take up to a hour till he shows up but if you have time you want to wait it out. And shotgun is best choice with a tighter choke. A turkey needs head or spine shot. When using a high powered rifle you can shoot head or right above where legs meet body.
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Re: Teach me!

Postby luie b » Wed Feb 08, 2012 9:57 pm

Indawoods wrote:
luie b wrote:I don't have a ton of experience with "succesful" turkey hunts but have hunted turkeys since I was 10. Having only killed 1 bird in all that time (yea, i know, sounds worse than it is but in all those years I can't even begin to count how many turkeys we've had hang up at like 60 yards) I don't have a lot of advice in how to get them to commit because that's what I really need to know how to do. Anyway my dad is the turkey hunter in the family and from the few dozen turkeys he's gotten he always says that a decoy is usually unnecessary and that the calling is more what a hunter should worry about. I sometimes use a decoy but what I can advise you is that turkeys like the calling a lot better than a good decoy. So for you I'd get a box call or two and maybe a diagphram if you can learn how to use one.


tone your calling volume down as they come in close and quit calling as frequently. :thumbsup:

My dad always said if you do a hen call and they gobble at it, then you do the same call again and they still gobble, then shut up because they'll come in. He always says too sometimes the best thing you can do to get the turkey to fully come into the decoys is nothing :biggrin:
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Re: Teach me!

Postby Super Dave 32 » Thu Feb 09, 2012 9:16 am

Turkey hunting is, IMHO, the most heart pounding. I killed 9 toms last spring (Okla, Neb and S Dakota trips) and even the very last one had my heart thumpin'.

Ditto to all the tips on scouting. You can be Daniel Friggin' Boone and not kill turkey if you are hunting where they ain't.

Everyone has opinions about the best way to kill turkey. When you're new, just hunt every opportunity that you can. Turkey hunting is your best teacher.

Here's the best tip that you will ever get in turkey hunting --- go to Cabelas and buy yourself a Gobbler Lounger. The key, IMHO, to successful turkey hunting is patience. Turkey see movement like you wouldn't believe. If you are sitting against a tree and your legs keep falling asleep and you keep moving, you will get busted and not even know old Tom saw you. You can sit in the Lounger for HOURS in comfort.

Last but not least, get a good box call. Anybody can use them. When you first sit down (in your Gobbler Lounger!), wait 15 minutes and hit the call about 7 or 8 yelps. Wait about 30 seconds and repeat. Then shut up for 15 minutes. Repeat the process every 15 minutes for a couple of hours. Try to sit as still as possible between calls. My first three turkey of 2011 never gobbled. They just "appeared" out of nowhere.

Last, last tip -- when you are thinking of leaving, give it 30 more minutes. It works!
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Re: Teach me!

Postby Cujo1 » Thu Feb 09, 2012 4:14 pm

Super Dave 32 wrote:Turkey hunting is, IMHO, the most heart pounding. I killed 9 toms last spring (Okla, Neb and S Dakota trips) and even the very last one had my heart thumpin'.

Ditto to all the tips on scouting. You can be Daniel Friggin' Boone and not kill turkey if you are hunting where they ain't.

Everyone has opinions about the best way to kill turkey. When you're new, just hunt every opportunity that you can. Turkey hunting is your best teacher.

Here's the best tip that you will ever get in turkey hunting --- go to Cabelas and buy yourself a Gobbler Lounger. The key, IMHO, to successful turkey hunting is patience. Turkey see movement like you wouldn't believe. If you are sitting against a tree and your legs keep falling asleep and you keep moving, you will get busted and not even know old Tom saw you. You can sit in the Lounger for HOURS in comfort.

Last but not least, get a good box call. Anybody can use them. When you first sit down (in your Gobbler Lounger!), wait 15 minutes and hit the call about 7 or 8 yelps. Wait about 30 seconds and repeat. Then shut up for 15 minutes. Repeat the process every 15 minutes for a couple of hours. Try to sit as still as possible between calls. My first three turkey of 2011 never gobbled. They just "appeared" out of nowhere.

Last, last tip -- when you are thinking of leaving, give it 30 more minutes. It works!

X2 I've got spots that I know turkeys hang out often. I go to those spots mid morning on those nothing happening days and set up camp! Call.....sit......call.......sit........Boom, they just appear in front of you no sounds, nothing. Sometimes you can hear them walking or scratching but usually you just notice that ugly head poking up!! Here we can hunt until 1:00, I stay until the fat lady sings :thumbsup:
All turkeys must die!


bighop wrote:Destined to be a child of the system now. Bounced around from house to house, abused, mistreated, earning his way on the streets. There's probably an expensive crack habit and a pair of those hind-leg wheels in his near futre.
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Re: Teach me!

Postby 18javelin » Tue Feb 14, 2012 9:29 am

Go out the night before and listen for one to fly up/gobble once he is in roost... you can owl hoot. crow call and get them to giveaway their roost...(if you didnt roost one last night go in the morning blow a owl hoot or crow and locate) Come back early the next morning and wait... If you hear a gobble slip in close sit within 100-150 yards away from roost. WAIT.... you should be able to hear them fly down, if you dont at first thought of them hitting ground. make a few soft yelps and a purr or three... Wait.... He should be coming in if not wait.... if he gobbles a few times in a spot i will call he gobbles i WAIT.... Curiosty Kills Birds....

I could go on and on and On..... best tactic to use is Patience but i like em off the limb into the dekes i like to watch their feet shuffle before they pitch out.

I have killed 19 birds with a Gun 6 with a bow and called in 30-40 for family and friends... The Most important RULE is there is never a Sure thing and If you say they wont do it they will vice Vrs....

I am a run and Gun guy even with my Bow my blind and 30lbs of other useless gear... My fav calls are Blackstone Custom Calls, Woodhaven cutom calls, Both friction and Mouth... PM me and i will answer what i can...
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