Editor’s Note: By now all the states’ turkey seasons have closed, and we’re still telling tales about the turkeys we’ve taken, and the turkeys smarter than us. According to Mark Drury, the creator of MAD calls, a member of the Mossy Oak Pro Staff (http://www.mossyoak.com/), and the producer and the star of Drury Outdoors’ award winning videos (https://www.druryoutdoors.com/), outdoorsmen are thinking about, “What can I do now to get ready for deer season and possibly take that buck of a lifetime? Although hunting is primarily people’s recreation, some of us have turned that recreation into a vocation. When hunting is your job, and the way you feed your family, making sure you’ve done everything right before deer season gives you the best chance for being successful – not only on opening day during deer season, but throughout the entire season too.”
My daughter, Taylor, has been hunting turkeys since she was 10-years old, and she is 22 now. As always Taylor and I hunted together this season. We went to Iowa, one of our favorite places to hunt. Taylor doesn’t do real well getting up before daylight to go out and hunt turkeys, but she gets all fired-up about an afternoon hunt. We were hunting a place on my farm that I call the “Hot Corner,” where two different woodlots come together. We set-up in the timber, because earlier we had seen turkeys out in the field that was tilled. We had been hunting those turkeys in the morning and tried to pull those turkeys out of the timber to come into the field without any luck.
The turkeys roosted right on the edge of the field and then flew down to the middle of the field. There was no way to get close to them during a morning hunt, and we couldn’t get those turkeys to fly back into the timber where we could take them. So, I decided that the turkeys should be out in the field late in the afternoon. I also knew they wanted to roost in the trees right next to the field. Taylor and I made a big loop around the field and into the timber to try and call the turkeys in before they flew up to roost. The birds were out in a clover field and a corn field. We started calling to them, and one of the longbeards began gobbling hard and loud. Finally, we saw him strutting out in the clover field at about 200 yards and coming to us. Then he moved into the woods and walked within 10 yards of Taylor, and she took him. This hunt was memorable because that tom strutted through the timber for a good ways before he walked within range of Taylor. We filmed the hunt with our cameras in the spring of 2017, and we put the video live the Drury Outdoors Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/OfficialDruryOutdoors/videos/1427622910613947). That bird weighed 25 pounds, had 1-1/4-inch spurs and was a mammoth-sized Iowa gobbler.
To learn more about turkey hunting, check out John E. Phillips’ print, Audible, Kindle and Nook turkey books at http://johninthewild.com/books/#turkey and at www.barnesandnoble.com. You also can download a free Kindle app that enables you to read the book on your iPad, computer or SmartPhone. You can learn more about calling turkeys by going to johninthewild.com/audio-files/ for audio turkey tapes to purchase of Lovett Williams, Rob Keck and Chris Kirby, available for download to your SmartPhone, tablet or computer. For a free copy of John E. Phillips’ “The Turkey Gobbler Getter Manual,” go to http://johninthewild.com/free-books/ to download.