Wild turkey

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Solve Late Season Turkey Hunting Problems Day 2: Hunt All Types of Turkeys

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Editor’s Note: No hunter can give exact rules for solving problems with any particular turkey, because each gobbler has a personality based on his genetic make-up, how long he’s lived, and how-many hunter encounters he’s had. Also, turkeys are very moody with changes in their likes and dislikes occurring almost daily. One day a turkey may gobble aggressively and come to any type of calling. The next day you go to hunt him, he may not gobble at all, and/or he may shy away from calling. Wild turkeys are very-complex birds. But if you hunt long enough, you will encounter toms nobody can take. The more you hunt them and learn about them, the greater your odds for bagging one. This week I’ll give tactics to help you take tough toms at the end of the season.

Wild turkey

Sneaky Toms:

When a gobbler’s in close enough for a shot, but you can’t make the shot because the bird’s behind you, often that turkey will circle you and come-up from behind your calling position. You can hear him drumming, strutting, spitting and walking – perhaps less than 15 steps from you. When this situation occurs, you must have nerves of steel and the patience of Job. A novice turkey hunter will try to turn and shoot before the turkey can get away but probably miss or not get a shot at the gobbler 90 percent of the time. Only patient tactics will solve this problem in the late season.

  • Wait for the turkey to walk in front of you by remaining still and motionless. Having to wait for a turkey to walk from behind me to in front of me is the most-exciting hunt ever and the surest way to take a sneaky tom.
  • Remain motionless, let the bird walk off, if the turkey never walks in front of you, and wait an additional 20 minutes before moving. Most hunters get-up too quickly when they think a turkey’s gone and will spook the bird. Then attempt to circle, get in front of the gobbler, and call to him again.

Gobbling and Walking Turkeys:

This kind of turkey has inspired the phrase, chasing gobblers. A hunter often will run after this bird, continue to close ground and attempt to call the tom to him. But remember, when a turkey walks away from you, he’s going somewhere. You’ll either have to bag him in the place where he wants to be or return to that spot the next day and wait on him to come to you. Don’t scare the tom in his safety zone, or else you’ll never see him again. However, you can take this tom that talks and walks.

Follow the bird through the woods, 100 to 200 yards behind him where he can’t see you. Use crow calls or owl calls to keep the turkey gobbling and to know his location. Once the gobbler stops, he’s probably in a strut zone or a place where he feels safe and secure and can see in all directions. If you know where this spot is in the woods, take your time to move close to the turkey. Call very little to him. Wait on him to come to you.

Wild turkey

Never call this turkey while he’s on the roost the next morning after following the turkey through the woods on the first day and locating the spot in the woods where he wants to go. Instead, move to the location where you’ve seen the turkey, start calling, and wait on the bird to show-up. Or, you can trail the tom at a distance where he can’t see you. Give clucking, light yelping and feeding calls like the purr about every 10 to 20 minutes to make the gobbler think a hen’s following him and trying to catch-up with him. At some point, the gobbler may turn and walk to meet the hen he feels is pursuing him. Once you can tell the turkey has turned around and has started back to you, take a stand immediately. Give only a few feeding calls, and wait for the gobbler to show-up.

Tomorrow: Hunt Defiant Turkeys

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.

VERSIONS: AUDIBLE, KINDLE & PRINT


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.

VERSIONS: AUDIBLE, KINDLE & PRINT


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.   

VERSIONS: AUDIBLE, KINDLE & PRINT


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.

VERSIONS: AUDIBLE & KINDLE

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