Show Notes:

You can successfully take a gobbler all season long, but things often change in the turkey woods as the season progresses. On this episode I talk about how you can improve your changes of success during the late season.

Take Aways:

  • Late season can be defined as the last week or last 10 days of the season, but in truth it is a moving target that has more to do with the weather than the calendar. The warmer the spring the earlier turkeys seem to do start and finish breeding in many areas.
  • Turkey’s become less vocal and more wary as the season goes on. So some of the tried and true strategies must change.
  • If toms won’t gobble you need to use other methods to locate them. They may still come in to calls but you have to get into ear shot of them one way or another for them to be able to hear.
  • The tried and true way to find a good area to hunt is by finding where turkey’s roost. This can involve evening scouting or looking for roost sign while you are in the woods during the day.
  • Listen to the episode to hear the five tactics you can use to be successful.

Show Notes:

Gear can be overrate, but there are times when a firearms selection can be so bad that it all but eliminates your chances for a successful hunt. On this episode I talk about the worst shotgun for turkey hunting, both from my experience with my first turkey gun and in general terms so you can make better informed firearms selections.

Take Aways:

  • A good turkey shotgun becomes an extension of the hunter. You don’t notice it, it just works, kind of like how you fingers just work and do what you want them to do.
  • A bad turkey shotgun is like a handicap, it is constantly hindering you and making things more difficult, or impossible.
  • What makes a gun a bad selection for a hunter is somewhat subjective, but when things do not work right, fail to perform, are unreliable, or designed poorly for the task, it is pretty universally recognized as a bad tool for the job.
  • Inexperience and lack of mentorship can make it easy to make bad decisions when you are new to something. Which is I started this podcast, so you can avoid the mistakes I made.
  • Listen to this episode to hear to whole story and get tips to make better choices than I did.

Show Notes:

A bigger turkey hunting shotgun means more power, more shot, and more range, so bigger must always be better right? Truth be told, a bigger shotgun often results in less effectiveness and less turkey hunting success (especially among newer hunters).  On this episode I talk about the pros, cons, and rarely discussed nuances of big turkey guns.

Take Aways:

  • More power does not directly translate to more effectiveness.
  • Few people truly understand the nature of recoil and how it effects accuracy and effectiveness.
  • The ability to endure heavy recoil without whimpering does not in any way translate to the ability to shoot a big gun well.
  • To help manage recoil, more powerful guns are heavier, which makes then harder to carry and shoot.
  • The anticipation of recoil is the enemy of accuracy. Being able to “take it” does not mean you are effective with it.
  • The best gun you can use is the one you can shoot well, accurately, and pleasantly. 
  • The number one factor to effectively killing gobblers is getting close to them. The least expensive guns and shells will perform well enough at the right distances.
  • Being able to throw shot out to long distances does not mean you have the accuracy to use that shot effectively.
  • The more powerful the gun, the less accurate many hunters tend to be. 
  • A turkey’s most vulnerable areas are its head and neck, their robust feathers limit the effectiveness of body shots with any gauge shotgun.
  • Even a .410 shotgun can effectively take a turkey at close range with good aim. Pattern trumps power. 
  • Turkey hunting is about fun. If a particular shotgun is not fun to use, it is a hindrance, not an asset.

 

Show Notes:

Hunting spring turkey with decoys is all the rage and there are endless options to choose from. But should newer hunters even consider using one? On this episode I give advice to help filter out the noise and talk about the situations that might warrant a decoy for new hunters.

Take Aways:

  • Everyone has an opinion, but when you are talking about new turkey hunters, there are special things to consider when it comes to turkey decoys.
  • New hunters will lack the skill and experience to read situations, landscapes, sign, or sun direction to use decoys well.
  • Decoys can create problems and distractions that would not have been there otherwise.
  • If you move and your decoy stays behind, it can become a liability.
  • But even still, there are certain times that new hunters would benefit from using a decoy, listen to this episode to learn more.

Show Notes:

While hunting spring turkey on foot can be a lot of fun, there are times when it is best to hunt gobblers from a blind. On this episode I talk about the 5 situations when hunting turkey from a blind is the most fun or gives you the best chances for success.

Take Aways:

  • No matter what anyone says, hunting turkey from a blind is REAL turkey hunting.
  • Real turkey hunting is best defined as the type that helps you safely enjoy the sport most.
  • Blinds offer certain advantages and disadvantages. Depending on your skill level and situation, the pros can outweigh the cons when it comes to your chances of success.
  • No usable trees or topography. Sometimes you just don’t have the cover you need to hunt turkeys, no matter how good your camo is. A blind can enable you to hunt certain spots that you would not have been able to hunt otherwise.
  • Injuries and disabilities. For some people, they are simply not able to hunt on the move or on the ground. A blind can help you successfully hunt gobblers when you not be physically able to otherwise.
  • Listen to the episode to hear about the other times when hunting from a turkey blind is the best option.

Show Notes:

Being stealthy is paramount when it comes to turkey hunting, it may be the single most important thing you can do to be more successful. On this episode I talk about specific and practical things you can do to become a stealthier turkey hunter.

Take Aways:

  • Stealth essentially refers to your ability to hunt without being noticed. You want to take every reasonable step to be undetected by turkeys.
  • You want turkeys to not know you are there, or better yet, think you are another turkey.
  • Good camo matters but silence and stillness matter more. 
  • Turkeys have great eye sight and excellent hearing. Couple that with the fact that they seem to live in a state of constant paranoia and you can see the great importance of stealth.
  • Stealth tip #1: Early and slow. Being in the woods early helps you get in position before the turkeys wake up, but it also gives you the time you need to move slowly and more stealthily.
  • Stealth tip #2: Lighter boots. The bigger and heavier the boot the larger the footprint and the heavier the footfall. Lighter boots enable you to walk quieter, avoid breaking as many twigs, and help you keep going longer without getting worn our and careless.
  • Stealth tip #3: Scout trails and access roads. Scouting in advance helps you find the quietest ways through the woods so you can get to your turkey hunting spots easily and efficiently. 
  • Stealth tip #4-#7: Listen to the episode to hear about these and more.

 

Show Notes:

Spring turkey hunting is one of the most exciting and energizing types of hunting. On this episode I talk about why you may want to hunt turkey with a bow or crossbow, when those tools may give you an advantage, and some tactics you need to be successful.

Take Aways:

  • Generally speaking, bows of any type add an additional layer of difficulty to turkey hunting.
  • New turkey hunters should not try to go directly to hunting with a bow to add difficulty, unless you live in an area where turkeys are easy to hunt or you are unable to use a shotgun. 
  • Vertical bows and crossbows do give you the advantage of being able to hunt on smaller parcels that are closer to houses and populated areas.
  • Turkey hunting is 90% experience/wordsmanship and 10% gear. Learning how to call and be stealthy as well as developing strategy and intuition will do far more for you than the weapon you choose or how fancy it is.
  • Crossbows are the recommended tool for new hunters when a bow is needed or desired.
  • Vertical bows take more time, work, and practice for you to be effective with them and are better suited for those who have already developed general proficiency in the basics of turkey hunting.
  • But as always, the best tool to use to start turkey hunting is the one you already have and know how to use. Be it a shotgun, crossbow, or vertical bow. If you have it, and you can use it reasonably well, then start with that.
  • Experience will teach you what tools are best for you or what features are the best fit for your style. 
  • Always try to make decisions and purchases based on your experience, not the opinions of others.

 

Show Notes:

When it comes to turkey hunting, you need multi spot strategies to optimize your chance for a successful season. On this episode I talk about five ways to scout for and find those locations.

Take Aways:

  • Turkeys in one area can behave very differently on any given week compared to turkeys a few miles away. 
  • Only hunting in one area limits you because you are stuck with how the turkeys are behaving there, and it puts a lot of hunting pressure on that spot.
  • Changing location mid season should be something you strongly consider when your main area has been quiet for multiple hunts.
  • You do not always have the time or energy to heavily scout secondary areas, so you need general strategies to help you find areas that are likely to contain birds with the scouting time you have available.
  • On this episode I cover 5 strategies to help you do just that. You can employ any one of them to help you pick a secondary turkey hunting location.
  • I do not recommend new hunters look for turkey roosting trees. The reason is any solid tree could be a roosting tree and it’s not a good way to narrow down where turkeys are.
    • If you see turkeys roosting then obviously that is a good sign but looking for ideal trees for roosting is not efficient unless you hunt in an area where trees are sparse.
  • Trail cams can be a great way to look for turkey sign, but you need to use strategy to find promising areas to place your trail cams.

Show Notes:

Turkeys are a wily and wary adversary, but like all animals they need and like certain things to thrive. On this episode I talk about small, practical, and cost effective things you can do on your land to improve your turkey hunting habitat.

Turkeys Need:

  • Food, just like you.
  • Water, in many areas they will drink daily.
  • Roosting trees, even mythical birds need to sleep.
  • Cover, they need places to hide and feel secure, else they will run from your property every time they feel afraid.
  • Elevation, they are called upland birds for a reason. They will tolerate some wetlands but they are not ducks!
  • Mature hardwoods, they like big open forested areas, as long as they feel safe.
  • Clearings, they like open spaces where they can search for food and socialize.
  • Safety, they don’t want to be around people or predator’s.
  • Each other, where the hens are, the gobblers will follow.
  • Did I mention food?

Find out the top three habitat improvements that new hunters can make with the most efficiency and cost effectiveness on this episode.

 

Show Notes:

This was not your average turkey hunt.  Nothing about it was like any hunt I’ve ever had. It was like box office drama unfolding in real time. There were ups, downs, near defeats, a glorious finale and a sudden twist at that end. That’s right, on this episode I recount the adventure of the gobbler I took this past week and am in the process of cooking as I type this.

Throughout the episode I explain some of the tactics and strategies that I used and why, I hope you take away a lot more than just the story. Which of course should be the aim of any really good story.