Sitka Mountain Gear
Tips for beginners
Turkey
Contributors to this thread:
BullSac 05-Apr-18
BullSac 05-Apr-18
Brotsky 05-Apr-18
White Falcon 05-Apr-18
White Falcon 05-Apr-18
midwest 05-Apr-18
Scoot 05-Apr-18
Paul@thefort 05-Apr-18
Ziek 05-Apr-18
pointingdogs 05-Apr-18
drycreek 05-Apr-18
Timbrhuntr 05-Apr-18
crazyhawksfan 05-Apr-18
Glunt@work 06-Apr-18
Teeton 06-Apr-18
Bob 06-Apr-18
Ziek 06-Apr-18
BullSac 06-Apr-18
From: BullSac
05-Apr-18
Usually I spend all my time deer and elk hunting, and spring means fishing. This year, I’m going to chase some turkeys around! I have some great property that is full of turkeys, and there is some good bottom land where I know they roost year after year. I know where they fly down to within about a 300 yard area. They spend the morning areas milking around the fields, then they wonder off into the higher wooded areas. I have a good ground blind and can shoot well out to 40 yards. What I don’t know, is how many / types of decoys do I need, and what’s a good call(s) for a beginner. I want to keep this is simple as possible. Anyone up for some basic tips that may convince a gobbler to come within 40 yards? I promise to post pics of my first turkey!!

Keven

From: BullSac
05-Apr-18
Forgot to add, completely unpressured birds! I’m the only one hunting this land.

From: Brotsky
05-Apr-18
Get yourself a Dave Smith Jake and upright hen. Those are the only decoys you will ever need. Sounds like you know the areas the turkeys frequent so set up your blind in those areas. Place your jake and hen decoy about 10 yards in front of your blind. A box call is probably the easiest call for a beginner to use. All you need to do is be able to make a few yelps and clucks and you can call in a tom. 90% of the battle is being in an area he already wants to be anyway. If you're in the right spot with good high quality decoys you will not need to be a good caller to kill your bird. Good luck this spring!

From: White Falcon
05-Apr-18

White Falcon's embedded Photo
White Falcon's embedded Photo
Turkeys are always closer than you think when you hear one. Don't over call, and some times they come in silent and from behind you!!

From: White Falcon
05-Apr-18

White Falcon's embedded Photo
White Falcon's embedded Photo
I have killed a few!

From: midwest
05-Apr-18
I prefer to be up high on a ridge where my calls can be heard farther. Location is everything so you want to be where they like to go. Don't be concerned when they quit gobbling later in the morning and you haven't had one come in. They are busy with hens. Just make a few yelps out the blind window every 15 minutes. Those hens will leave the tom after they get bred to go lay an egg and the toms are much easier to call in even though they may come in silent. After 9 a.m. is magic time!

Put your jake deek where you want to shoot and keep it at around 10 yards like Brotsky said. Aim for the middle of the middle or slightly above and use a big expandable.

Turks are a blast....good luck!

From: Scoot
05-Apr-18
Turkeys are a hoot! My suggestion is to get a Magnus Bullhead and aim for where the head meets the neck. No injured and not recovered turkeys! They're either dead or missed or just fine (Bullheads bounce off of feathers and leave the bird uninjured [but dang confused!]).

From: Paul@thefort
05-Apr-18

Paul@thefort's embedded Photo
Paul@thefort's embedded Photo
Paul@thefort's embedded Photo
Paul@thefort's embedded Photo
Paul@thefort's embedded Photo
Paul@thefort's embedded Photo
Paul@thefort's embedded Photo
one box call and a couple of mouth diaphragms. See You Tube for "turkey calling"
Paul@thefort's embedded Photo
one box call and a couple of mouth diaphragms. See You Tube for "turkey calling"

From: Ziek
05-Apr-18

Ziek's embedded Photo
Ziek's embedded Photo
"...can shoot well out to 40 yards."

Forget that crap! ;-) That's the biggest mistake beginners make. Set your decoys within 10 yards. and shoot them when they get there.

From: pointingdogs
05-Apr-18
Yep, don't over call. They already know where you are :)

From: drycreek
05-Apr-18
I'm gonna go against the grain here and say if you're hunting unpressured birds almost any decoys will work. I killed a lot of turkeys with dekes that looked like buzzards. When a Tom is hot, he's hot, and when he's not, he's not !

( with apologies to Jerry Reed )

From: Timbrhuntr
05-Apr-18
I love to over call it's half the fun !

05-Apr-18
Good advice above. If you want to drop the coin the dsd decoys are money. If not there are great looking cheaper options as well. Sounds like you already know there pattern so all you need is some decoys and set up in there morning area and with any luck you won't even need to call. Echo what others have said, decoys 10 yards or so from blind. Also body shots are trricky and I would recommend the Magnus bullheads. If there that close you might as well shoot em in the face! Pretty satisfying as well and either clean miss or dead bird..

From: Glunt@work
06-Apr-18

Glunt@work's embedded Photo
Glunt@work's embedded Photo
I use mouth calls most of the time but had great luck with my old Lynch's. I started notching it when it called in a bird that got tagged. The paddle broke and it was retired.

From: Teeton
06-Apr-18
I've kill my share of birds. I'm a body shooter. Like stated above 40 yds is out of the question. Thats a extremely far and risky shot. If going with a body shot, a mechanical head is tops. Vortex makes some good strong and pinpoint shooting Expendables, also the rocket hammerhead is a great choice.

Learn the turkey's Anatomy. The Kill Zone on a turkey is only a little bigger than a baseball and it's a very hard spot to pick out from the different angles of bird presents. One good rule in picking out a spot ( and I'm a firm believer ) is coming up the leg about 4 inches into the body.

From: Bob
06-Apr-18
Kevin, Best advice I can give you for bowhunting turkeys is to learn to hunt them without using a call.

From: Ziek
06-Apr-18

Ziek's embedded Photo
Ziek's embedded Photo
While I've had some luck with cheaper decoys, I was amazed when I started using DSD. Sure, sometimes it doesn't matter what you put out, but if you don't have to carry them too far they are worth every penny. I went through many other brands (waisting money) before I finally just bought the DSD flock. We (my wife and I) now have two flocks, which gives us lots of choices for set-ups. To start, I would suggest the jake and submissive or upright hen. I've had toms literally wear themselves out trying to breed both types of hens, taking time out just to bump and intimidate the jake. If you like to bow hunt, you're going to LOVE turkey hunting. May as well start out with the best tools.

From: BullSac
06-Apr-18
All great advice! Many thanks. The area im going to focus on is a 200 acre, fairly skinny (maybe 100 yards wide, but loooong) field with tall timber on each side and a small creek that runs through the middle. The birds roost above the fields in the tall trees, and fly down just after first light. I agree on the sparse calling, I’m sure they will see the few decoys I’m going to put out before they even fly down.

I’ve been watching these turkeys for 20 years, and they have been consistent year after year in what they do. I very well may be the first person to ever hunt this property (for turkeys in the spring). I’ll keep updated on how it goes, opening day is April 16th. Box call and a few decoys (Jake and hen) are in the mail.

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