Show Notes:

It is an age old turkey hunting question, should you take a shot on the jake that comes by, or hold out for a mature tom. On this episode I examine the ins and outs of this question and heartedly answer it from the perspective of the new hunter.

Take Aways

  • A jake is a juvenile male turkey that is 1 year old, they have a shorter beard, staggered tail fan feathers, no spurs, and weigh a couple pounds less.
  • A tom is a mature male turkey that is 2+ years old, they have a longer beard, uniform tail feathers, developed spurs, and are a bit larger.
  • Turkeys do get a little heavier the older they get, but diet matters much more than age.
  • Younger birds are usually more tender and tasty than older birds.
  • Jakes tend to be a little less cautious than mature birds but may also not react as strongly to calls.
  • Jakes often travel in pairs and groups, even during the season. They can breed but it is unlikely they will unless there are no toms in the area.
  • Listen to the episode to hear the answer to the question of whether you should shoot jakes, and the reasons behind it.