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You Can Take More Turkeys Day 1: Don’t Be Impatient Hunting Turkeys

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Editor’s Note: Trey Montgomery of West Greene, Alabama, has been hunting turkeys for 46 years and guiding for turkeys for 30+  years at the Lakes of Leavellwood. Although most beginning turkey hunters think that successful turkey hunting depends on their abilities to call turkeys, Montgomery has found over the years that there are several critical ingredients to consistently taking a longbeard. This week we’ll explore Montgomery’s techniques to help you hunt turkeys more effectively.

I learned early on in my hunting career that you can’t be impatient when trying to take a turkey. A term I’ve heard before that I totally believe in is Turkey Time. You can’t get a turkey to do what you want him to do on your time and when and show-up where and when you want him to be able to hunt him. When you’re hunting on Turkey Time, the turkey dictates where you need to set up, how long you should try and call to him, and why you shouldn’t move, until that tom moves away from you.

I was calling for one of my best friends to help him try and take a turkey – probably one of the first turkeys I ever called in for anyone. We knew that the gobbler wanted to be in this area where we had set-up because I had heard and seen him there before. I only clucked or purred about every 15 minutes, giving him these very-soft calls infrequently. I began calling that turkey at first light, and my buddy didn’t shoot that turkey until 10:30 am in the morning.

That hunt taught me more about how, why and when to be patient and wait on the gobbler to come in, rather than moving on him, changing locations and possibly spooking him. I think this is one mistake that many turkey hunters make.

In the early days of turkey hunting, many old veterans used box calls, made three or four clucks or yelps, and then pitched their box calls well away from where they were sitting to keep from being tempted to use those box calls again. They might wait from daylight to 12:00 noon for a gobbler to come in to where they were set-up.

I’m convinced that that old strategy of waiting longer than you think you should will produce more tom turkeys than running and gunning will, especially if you know where that turkey wants to be, where you’ve seen him, and/or where you’ve heard him at different times of the day.

This gobbler had been educated by an adjoining property owner who had called to this turkey too much, had shot at him and had spooked him. This tom was an old bird with 1-1/4-inch spurs. He was at least a 4-5 year old gobbler. Many turkeys that have lived that long know more about turkey hunters than the hunters understand about these older birds. These hunters previously had called to this tom too much, too loudly and too often. These hunters shooting and missing this ole bird helped that turkey get his PhD on hunters.

Looking for more content? Check out our YouTube channel and watch “Eddie Salter on Hunting a Tough Turkey” 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.


To see all of John E. Phillips’ turkey-hunting books, go to

Tomorrow: Understand That Named Turkeys Generally Are Bad Birds

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