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Old Turkey Calls Still Work Today Day 4:  A Turkey Hunt’s Not Ever Over

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Editor’s Note: Often when a new call comes to the market, turkey hunters will put away their old calls and start using the newest, latest and greatest call. However, old turkey calls are just as effective, if not more effective, today than they were in the past. Such is the case with the turkey tube call, the wing bone call and the trumpet call. I met Lyle Gilbert of Tuscaloosa, Alabama, a forester, a turkey-hunting guide since the mid-1990s and the creator and owner of Houndstooth Game Calls,when I saw him blowing a tube call at a turkey showcase. Years ago the tube call was considered to be one of the  most-productive turkey calls on the market. I talked with Gilbert, who grew up chasing deer and turkeys near Livingston, Al, to learn why today he’s producing tube calls, trumpet calls and wing bone calls.

Lyle Gilbert says a turkey hunt may not be over, even when a hunter may think it is. “I am 47-years old now, and I can remember when I was 6-years old going turkey hunting with my dad and seeing him miss a big gobbler. That miss was probably as much my fault as it was his, because I had whispered in a too-loud a voice, ‘Shoot! Shoot! Shoot!’ I’ve been hunting turkeys or watching my dad hunt turkeys for 40+ years. While in college in Mississippi, I operated a turkey-hunting camp for a Mississippi outfitter and guided as well.

“I learned from guiding for many years that you must be patient to have a successful turkey hunt.  Patience is more important than turkey calling. The other guides I hunted with used to laugh and kid me about being the last one to the breakfast table after the morning hunt was over. My philosophy developed like this, ‘When you think a turkey hunt is over, the hunt isn’t really over.’ One good rule of thumb is that when you think that the turkey isn’t going to come to you, that he’s probably left the county, he’s been spooked by a predator, or he’s gone off with a hen, look at your watch. Then remain on your stand at least 30 minutes or an hour longer before you make another move, set-up in a different place or use another call.

“One time while hunting, I started calling to a gobbler at daylight and didn’t take that turkey until 12:30 pm. I finally took that turkey by being in a cow pasture, putting brush between me and the turkey, so the turkey couldn’t see me through or around that foliage. He gobbled all the way to me trying to pull the hen (me) from behind the brush. When he couldn’t see her, his ego made him try to come to the hen to show her just how big and what a proud bird he was. The turkey hunts I remember the most are the ones I had to wait the longest to finally shoot the bird.”

Looking for more content? Check out our YouTube channel and watch “Overlooked Turkey Hot Spots” by John E. Phillips.

Check out John E. Phillips’ 12th book: “Turkeys: Today’s Tactics for Longbeards Tomorrow

  • hunting strategies with pros Will Primos, David Hale, Eddie Salter, Preston Pittman, Allen Jenkins, Terry Rohm, Paul Butski, Larry Norton and others.
  • information about taking turkeys with .410 shotguns.
  • box-call techniques.
  • strategies for moving on turkeys.
  • ways to hunt public-land gobblers.
  • the differences in calling and hunting Eastern, Osceola and Western turkeys.
  • the latest research on turkeys; and other information.

Click here to check out John’s 12th turkey book.

Expert Guidebooks on Turkey Hunting: Best Sellers

Turkey Hunting Tactics
This turkey hunting audiobook has entertaining chapters like: “How to Miss a Turkey”, “Hunting with a Guide”, and “The Turkey and the New York Lady”.

You’ll learn about all the subspecies of turkey across North America, how to use a turkey call, how to scout before turkey season, how to find a turkey to hunt, and what hunting gear you’ll need to put the odds in your favor to take a wily gobbler.


How to Hunt Turkeys with World Champion Preston Pittman
You easily can take a turkey if you don’t make any mistakes, but you have to know what the deadly sins of turkey hunting are to keep you from making those mistakes. If you understand how to hunt a turkey, you’re far more likely to take a gobbler than if you just know how to call a turkey.

Of course, calling is important, and if you want to learn to call a turkey, Preston Pittman will teach you how to call turkeys with box calls, friction calls, diaphragm calls, and other turkey sounds.

You’ll also learn why Preston Pittman once put turkey manure all over his body to kill a tough tom.

When you have turkeys that strut and drum in the middle of a field, when you know there’s no way to get close enough to get a shot, Pittman will show you some weird tactics that have worked for him to help you hunt tough ole toms.

But the main thing you’ll learn in this book is how to become the turkey.

Using what he’s learned while hunting wild turkeys, he’s also become a master woodsman who can take most game, regardless of where he hunts. To learn more secrets about how to be a turkey hunter from one of the world champions of the sport, this turkey-hunting book with Preston Pittman is a must.


The Turkey Hunting Guides’ Bible
The quickest way to learn how to turkey hunt successfully is to either hunt with a turkey hunter with years of experience or a turkey-hunting guide. These two types of turkey hunters have solved most of the problems turkey hunters ever will face. 

Just as one size of shoes won’t fit every person, one style of turkey hunting doesn’t fit each hunter.  Each turkey-hunting guide interviewed for this book has his own style of calling, hunting, and outsmarting turkeys.  

While listening to this book, make a list of the new information you’ve learned, take that list with you during turkey season, and try some of the new tactics. Then you’ll become a more versatile turkey hunter and prove the wisdom from The Turkey Hunting Guides’ Bible.   


Outdoor Life’s Complete Turkey Hunting (2nd Edition)
This Audible book will help you learn how to call turkeys with two of the nation’s best, longtime and well-known turkey callers, Rob Keck, formerly with the National Wild Turkey Federation, and Lovett Williams, a wildlife biologist who recorded wild turkeys giving the calls that you’ll learn how to make on various types of turkey callers.


Tomorrow: Lyle Gilbert Takes His Toughest Turkey

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