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Go Back   Bayou Bucks Hunting Community > Louisiana Hunting > Turkey Hunting

Turkey Hunting The Most Challenging Game

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  #1  
Old February 3rd, 2010
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Chadabear Chadabear is offline
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Default Take it from a Pro...use it to help.....

I have had the privelage of being on many sites, before, during, and after the turkey seasons as they come and go...It seems that the biggest questions always come from beginners wanting advice from more experienced turkey hunters. I am starting this thread as a way for first timers to get answers to novice questions. Hopefully the "expert", and experienced turkey hunters will post some of their steps as to what is important to be watchful for and to know what and what not to do without making it difficult to understand. I remember reading a response that someone mentioned a post was "over their head", so hopefully it can help bring some of the challenge down to earth. This thread will be stickied so it will stay on top and not get lost. This way it can be easily accessed and reviewed by people who need it, when they need it......

******PLEASE LIMIT THIS THREAD TO INFO ONLY****** All comments or specific questions please address on another thread. I want to leave this here for a quick reference guide, and to help without having to file through too many comments, Thanks guys and Good Luck.

Last edited by Chadabear; February 4th, 2010 at 11:13 AM.
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  #2  
Old February 3rd, 2010
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Default Persistance!

Great idea Chadabear! It took me four years of hard hunting to kill my first gobbler. I made a lot of mistakes and learned from each one. I wish that I would have had someone to help me. I had to learn it all on my own. The one piece of advice I will give out, is to be persistant. Don't expect to walk into the woods and kill a bird. If you do, I promise you, it is pure luck. Keep at it. Don't get dicouraged! After my first one, it was like someone opened the flood gates. Everything started to come together. Keep your eye on the prize. Suck up as much information as you can, but there is nothing like being in the woods and experiencing it for yourself. That is where the learning takes place. Go get em! And good luck!!
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  #3  
Old February 4th, 2010
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THE MOST important tip-- Learn what the gobbler does after flydown. Where does he go ? Watch the right-of-ways around 10 am. You need to know where he goes after flydown to strut. THAT is where you need to be. Less Emphasis on the roost. I have found the roost hunting is old school way that does not work often. The gobbler hears you, gobbles his head off at you, BUT he has a mission and many times will fly down and go to his strut zone all the while gobbling at your every call.

FINDING BIRDS
If you are brand new and do not know where to start, check maps of your area for the biggest creeks, or rivers, large lakes etc. that are in the woods. Fields or right-of-ways in the same area are a plus. Sneak in there in the dark NO FLASHLIGHT and wait for daylight, in March. Listen well for gobbles at first light. Do not be stirring around pacing in the leaves, talking etc. because you might miss the first half of a gobble and not know where it came from. Again, at about 10 am, WATCH the right-of-ways. You hear me say that so often for a reason. even the main truck roads. This is especially important if it is raining . DO NOT simply prance down these right-of-ways. Stay to the extreme sides and moniter them with good binoculars. Leupold Yosemite $99 @ academy.

Allow natural owls and crows to make locating calls. Most of the time you will not need the locate calls because the real thing does it for you. What I have been noticing is that a pilletted woodpecker triggers gobbles wayyyyy more than the owl. I WILL have one of those calls real soon.
The piletted woodpecker is that giant red headed woodpecker that flies from tree to tree making that " yak yak yak yak " sound ; the bird is often mistaken for an Ivory-Billed woodpecker.
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  #4  
Old February 4th, 2010
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Gun tuning...Check out you-tube, and look online about the different style chokes, bullets, and guns that are out there. Don't go break the bank trying to pattern a gun, but at the same time you need a good idea of how effectiuve it will be at 30-40 yds. Most experts and shooters will tell you that 35-40 yds is about as far as you will want to try and kill a turkey. The closer the better..(for addrenaline purposes too..hehe), My advice is to get with a friend and share the cost on at least two different kids of shots and if lucky enough try and locate a good store bought choke. There are a TON of different chokes out there and they all shoot different out of each gun, so this is where you could spend alot of money on trial and error with patterning. Just make sure it is a XX, full specifically designed for Turkey choke. There are alot of different targets to try and shoot, but a good ol paper plate is the best way to determine how many BB's are in the kill zone at 30yds.
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  #5  
Old February 4th, 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Swacker View Post
thanks guys for helpin out the people like myself who wanna start huntin birds but dont no where to start... an how would u go about locatin birds?
Depending on how big your property, terrain, and how many people hunt you need to start getting ready now. Gear should be your primary focus now on gathering your calling ****nial and finding the best equipment for your gun to produce effective kill zones out to 30 yards. The best thing for calls and guns is to ask someone. You can dodge alot of time and cost by just asking alot of experienced turkey hunters on what they use and what they think is effective. Then just find what works for you. You need to start gathering info on the property you will be hunting. How is the terrain? Where are the major roads and fields? Where have you or someone else seen turkey's before? Are the woods thick 5 year old pines or clear open hardwoods? These are the types of questions you need to be asking yourself. If it is a property that you have never stepped foot on I would pull up property on google earth and make a print out. Then go now (a month and a half) before the season opens and walk the property during the middle part of the day. Walk the roads, trails, and open woods looking for tracks, scratching, dust sites, and turkey crap. I don't think you will be seeing any strut markes at this time, but you never know so keep eye out for that as well. Note your findings and mark any good places for a roost site such as a ridge, creek, or small set of hardwoods. Roost sites are not always the same tree, but usually in the same area if the birds were not spooked the day before. Also mark potiential strut zones such as a tall ridge, road, field. Log your findings. What I usually do is use the 3 weekends before the season opens to listen for gobbles and locate where gobblers are roosting. Some people just wait till two or three days during the week before the season to get a more accurate read the day before the hunt. I don't have enough vacation or sick days to waste on scouting so I use weekends. When you go to locate a gobbler before the season don't bring any calls, wear camo head to toe, and don't stray to far from the gate or try to stay atleast 200 yards from where you think a turkey might be. On a new property I would arrive well before daylight, park at the gate and hold tight. If you don't know where the turkeys are roosting then you don't want to ride or walk all over due to the fact you might get too close or pass up birds you might have to scare to get out of the woods. On a good clear morning, away from a road, with no wind you can hear a good 300-400 yards unless you are like my old friend who could not hear a dump truck crashing through a nitroglicerin plant. If your ears are bad take someone along who can be your "hearing ear human" (That was F-in corny). Once you have determined the roost site after a couple of mornings, stay a safe distance away and see if you can figure where the turkeys go after fly down. I also leave and come back around 10:00 AM to see if a lonely gobbler is at his strut zone and gobbling for a companion. There is no acorns during the spring so turkeys diet usually consist of bugs, seeds, and grasses that they find on roads, fresh cutovers, and fields. Take it all in and come up with a plan. Just remember never call before the season, try to have little or no impact on a turkey during scouting, get comfortable with what ever call you choose, read up and learn as much about turkeys as you can such as their breeding habits, eating habits, etc., and learn from your mistakes. You only grow as a turkey hunter when you make a mistake and learn from it. You might kill your first turkey this year or 5 years from now but eventually experience and learning from your mistakes will mold you into an upcoming and seasoned turkey hunter.
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  #6  
Old February 5th, 2010
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When you get some calls, start off simple and learn how to use that call, i'd reccomend starting with either a box or a slate, the slate is more forgiving than a glass and easier for a beginner to learn with at first, practice with those calls until you feel comfortable, get a cd if you can or listen to some turkeys on youtube, learn how to make the basic yelp first, then the cluck, you can kill alot of birds with just that, when you get a rhyhem down, get a mouth call and just put it in your mouth for a while to get used to it, then you can start learning how to use it, there are several websites out there to help you, remember practice, practice, practice, and learn to sit still, and be patient, it will come with time, but remember, if you think you know everything about turkey hunting, think again, an old gobbler will show you some tricks, still learning every year after 22 years of chasing, my blood is starting to flow red again
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  #7  
Old February 28th, 2010
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I don't know if I would consider myself an expert, but I have messed with them since the early 80s, and screwed up probably as many as I have killed, which is quite a few. If I had to give anyone advice, it would be this: once you have located a bird still on the limb, dont misjudge the distance! Many times thru the years I have bumped the bird trying to get 5 yrds closer. If he's gonna come, he's gonna come. If he's got hens, he's coming only if they do. If you can call him 100 yrds, then you can call him 150.
The spring woods lack foliage and they will bust your butt in a New York second and its game over. Their not gonna flush like quail either, they will not make a peep, and after a while (maybe 2 hours) you'll head on up their to see where they went, and thats when they'll flush. You have just given those birds some education too because You been sittin down there callin to em and they been watchin you!
Knowing the lay of the land is important, as soon as you feel like he has an unobstructed path to you (preferably uphill) STOP. During all the gobbling before fly down you'll probably here some wild hens. Concentrate on what she says and how she says it. She is gonna beat you out everytime, but there is a good chance some satellite gobblers in the area that may head on in to you.
Killing the Boss right after he flys off the limb is highly unlikely, you wont get him till 9 or later, but I have killed a pile of 2 year olds and jakes like this.
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  #8  
Old February 28th, 2010
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By far not a pro, but Beretta is right, beware of the silent non-dominant bird to come to you after you THINK your hunt is over. Best chance for a novice to get a bird. AND DON'T CALL TOO MUCH! Let him come looking, he knows where you are believe me.
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  #9  
Old February 28th, 2010
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Default Beretta is right--don't call too much.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruger109 View Post
AND DON'T CALL TOO MUCH! Let him come looking, he knows where you are believe me.
Be Patient. I'm still just a novice but that is ONE thing I did learn from the outfitter in Wyoming last year when I nailed the Merriam--he was set up about 25 yards behind us & called softly about every 20-30 minutes. We set up and waited almost 2 hours before that bird came in. And he DID come to the call and zeroed in on the decoy. He was a 2 year old bird, and probably not a dominant gobbler but he did come to the call.
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  #10  
Old March 10th, 2010
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This one is pretty basic to a lot of you, but I wish someone had told me when I was starting out. Try to avoid walking and calling. Don't use your hen call as a locator call. I can remember several times I would ease through the woods yelp a few times then move on a couple minutes later just to bump a bird coming to me silently. Get set up in a decent spot and sit there for a while after calling. Not saying you can't get a bird to gobble like this but for me it's not worth the risk.
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