Show Notes:

Up until recently every hunter using a firearm had to make a decision with every hunt. Do they protect their future or relish the present? Tetra Hearing has changed the game for all hunters when it comes to saving their hearing and enjoying every precious sound of every hunt and game species. Whether you are hunting ducks, geese, turkeys, deer, pheasants, grouse, crows, doves, elk, or anything else the Tetra AlphaShield & Multi-Pursuit hearing devices can not only save your hearing but help you hear better and hunt better.  I make no commissions on this product and there are no affiliate links. These are my own opinions and this my very own detailed and passionate review.  This may be the most important podcast episode I have ever done. Please listen to this episode.

Pros:

  • Allows you to hear everything around you with crisp clarity.
  • Audio quality is exceptional, no static, hum, ambient sounds, distractions, etc.
  • Can be custom tuned to your actual personal hearing levels for each ear.
  • Instantly blocks out the sound of gun fire and loud calling to protect your hearing.
    • These are designed to both stop the incremental hearing loss that comes from infrequent shooting with the average deer and turkey seasons as well as stop the accelerated hearing loss caused by high volume shooting seen in hunting waterfowl, pheasants, doves, crows, etc. 
  • Utilizes advanced audio processing technology to filter out various sounds you do not want to hear but more clearly capture subtle sounds you do want to hear.
  • Filters out the majority of wind noise.
  • Amplifies the unique sounds of the game animals you are hunting like turkey gobbles and yelps, duck quacks and wing beats, deer grunts and footfalls, pheasants flushing, and much more. 
  • Far better than anything I’ve seen on the market. In my mind they have no competitors, no one else offering similar products is even in their league. 
  • Fits snugly in your ear and will not fall out.
  • Works great while wearing a hat, beanie, whole head facemask, camo head shroud, etc.
  • Can be put on in seconds.
  • Reduces flinching causes by loud muzzle blast and may help some hunters shoot more accurately.
  • Uses long lasting disposable hearing aid batteries you can easily and inexpensively get in bulk.
  • Super simple to use, there is almost no way to do it wrong. Before long you can easily put them on in the dark without effort or thought.
  • Is sensitive enough to pick up the faintest whisper and the wing beats of ducks but instantly blocks out the roar of magnum shotgun shells.
  • Can be programmed for the game animals that you personally hunt.
  • Improves your hearing so well that even archery hunters may want to use them to hear game more clearly from further away.
  • Designed by ear doctors and hunters, does its job with outstanding excellence. 
    • It is as if they thought of every intricate detail but put it in a package with unexplainable simplicity. 
  • Utilizes high grade hearing aid technology meant to be used constantly, reliably, and without down time. 
  • Comes with 6 different size tips to accommodate different ear sizes.
  • Tetra has confirmed that people with Health Saving Accounts (HSA) can use those funds towards purchasing their products.

Cons:

  • They fit too tightly for my small ears at first. They felt acceptably snug after a few outings. But after a few half day hunts they fit comfortably enough that I would forget I was wearing them. I’d rather them fit perfectly from day one, but this is still preferred over being too loose.
    • Some people with small ears may not wear them enough to find out that their ears will adapt to them and they become comfortable over time.
  • Sounds weird indoors and around town. But they are meant to be used in the field and they do thrive in their intended environment.
  • The battery door feels a little delicate when open. Should be fine, but be careful to take it is easy when changing batteries. 
  • Price. No two ways about it, they are expensive. Costing as much as a firearm makes them a significant purchase. A very well worth it purchase, but not something most people can casually buy without saving up. 
    • They do go on sale occasionally. And Tetra has said they are working on sourcing more cost effective components to lower the prices.

Final Analysis: Every hunter using a firearm should get these, especially those hunting game requiring regular and frequent shooting like waterfowl, pheasants, doves, etc. If you are a new hunter it would be better to hunt another season or two with a less than thrilling firearm and buy these before upgrading your gun. Everyone should put these on their vision list and prioritize them as they are financially able. 

Learn more at www.TetraHearing.com

Show Notes:

Today was a dream come true in the turkey woods! Gobbler down within 5 minutes of legal shooting time! But it didn’t happen by accident, this turkey hunt took strategy, preseason work, and a carefully thought out plan including tactics that are out of the ordinary for me.  On this episode I share the story and the strategy.

  • I am so excited and so thankful to God, Josh for letting me hunt here, my family supporting my hunting season absences, and everyone who has helped me learn, grow, and acquire effective equipment over the years.
  • This was an awesome hunt, even though it was short. It’s the stuff that dreams are made of, taking a long beard at daybreak on opening day! Especially since I got skunked last season. It felt like a redemption moment.

Check out the video for the full story and the five strategies that helped me take this beautiful bird. 

 

Show Notes:

Turkeys behave differently as the day wears on, so to boost your odds of success you need to adjust your strategies right along with them. On this episode I talk about a variety of late morning turkey hunting tactics.

Take Aways

  • Prime turkey hunting is usually the first hour or two of daylight, but it is only prime because birds make the most noise and are the easiest to locate.
  • Turkeys can be called and taken just as well as the morning goes on. But the game changes as the sun rises.
  • Late morning you need to hunt sign, travel areas, and where you heard the birds and called to them early on.
  • Tom will at times come back after the hens have left them, if you were close to them early, you have a chance in that same general area later.
  • Covering ground becomes a different game as the day wears on. But patience and persistence are both rewarded.
  • Listen to the episode to hear a variety of late morning tactics.

 

Show Notes:

Hunting where turkeys are supersedes all gear and every skill, nothing can help you unless you hunt near birds. On this episode I explain how to find a great spot to hunt gobblers be it on public or private land.

Take Aways

  • Turkeys need food, and occasionally take a drink as well.
  • Turkeys love three main habitat features; open hardwoods, cover, and grassy fields
  • If you hunt where turkey’s want to be and spend their time you will have drastically more success than if you just hunt random areas.
  • Turkey’s are upland birds, so focus your search on places that are dry and support good tree growth.
  • Whenever you are hunting you should also be scouting, trying to determine where your next hunt should be.
  • Turkeys are perhaps most visible when flying up to a high tree to sleep, if you can catch a glimpse in the evening you have found a spot.
  • Birds can move quite a bit of distance in a day, but they often roost in the same areas, look for roosting evidence.
  • Every time of day has its advantages for scouting. Try scout early in the morning to listen for gobbles, or mid day to look for ground sign, and late in the day to see them going to roost.
  • Listen to the episode to learn how to find a great turkey hunting spot.

Show Notes:

Different tactics are needed to be successful hunting silent turkeys. Lots of gobbling sure helps, but you can still take a turkey even on a quite morning. On this episode I talk about the strategies needed to be successful when birds give you the silent treatment.

Take Aways

  • Quiet turkeys is not the same as no turkeys. There must be birds around for you to have a chance.
  • Before making a decision on what to do on a silent morning, review the evidence in your mind about why you believe gobblers are in the area.
  • If turkeys are quiet you need to be quiet. Call sparingly and do not make any identifiable human noises at all.
  • Patience is the biggest skill on quiet mornings.
  • The two kinds of birds you are mostly likely to call in are the ones that heard you early and joined up with real hens off the roost or birds that are traveling through the area.
  • There is no such thing as a bad day in the turkey woods!
  • Listen to the episode to learn how to hunt silent turkeys

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.

Show Notes:

I have seen almost every turkey hunter I have ever known make the same critical error. This includes people who are brand new to the sport and those who have been hunting for 40 years and have written books on the subject. This has cost people many successful hunts (myself included) and it has cost many a measure of their health as well. On this episode I talk with Bill Dickinson, an expert hunter, doctor, and co-founder of an amazing outdoor company that is doing some of the most important work in the industry.

Take Aways

  • Until recently there has been no great ways to hunt turkeys and protect your hearing. Ear plugs ruined the hunt and electronic ear plugs only sort of ruined the hunt while creating other issues.
  • Hearing loss is cumulative over time. Every shot taken potentially harms your hearing some, for other it causes more harm.
    • Research shows that some people’s hearing can take more of a beating while other people lose their hearing faster. But sometimes even those with robust hearing are unexpectedly just one gunshot away from partial deafness
  • Bill, who is a doctor of audiology, co-founded a company called Tetra Hearing with the express goal of not just preserving people’s hearing, not just preserving the sound of the hunt, but improving the auditory experience of the hunt WHILE protecting your hearing.
  • For those with perfect hearing, Bill’s product enables you to hear like normal while magnifying the sounds that turkeys make so you can hear them from further away.
    • As soon as you pull the trigger a sensor causes the device to go from amplification to suppression, blocking out the sound of the gunshot like traditional ear plugs.
  • For those with poor hearing, Tetra’s product acts as a hearing aid, amplifying the sounds of the woods to match your hearing level and augmenting the unique sounds that turkeys make.
    • And again, as soon as you take a shoot, it is instant hearing protection.
  • Always wear hearing protection of some kind, if at all possible. ESSPECIALLY when you may be taking multiple shots or hunting with others who may be shooting too.

You can learn more about Bill’s work and company by visiting TetraHearing.com and you can take a free hearing test to help assess your current condition. 

(Disclaimer, there are no affiliate links, no commissions or kick backs, I do not make a dollar if you purchase anything. I genuinely and strongly believe in the work Bill is doing)

Show Notes:

Turkey decoys are all the rage, and just like any tool there are times they are right for the job. But on this episode I look at times when decoys are very much the wrong tool for the job and can even cost you the hunt.

Take Aways

  • Decoys are like a screw driver, they have a few focused uses. But they cannot be the only tool you use.
  • Decoys are a big industry and have great marketing, but even a gold plated screw driver still only has a few useful applications.
  • In the real world you need to be concerned with how other animals interact with your decoys, not just how turkey’s like them.
  • If you hunt on public land, decoys could attract other hunters as much or more than turkeys.
  • Weather plays a part and can effect decoy appearance and behavior.
  • Many people change the way they hunt to be less focused on taking gobblers and more focused on how to best use decoys…
  • Jake decoys and tom decoys may turn off more birds than they attract, especially later in the season.
  • Listen to the full episode to here the 3 times turkey decoys do more bad than good, and stay turned for a bonus situation or two.

Show Notes:

Calling a gobbling turkey to you is the main way to hunt these birds, but that does not mean you should never move from your position. On this episode I talk about times when moving can help boost your chances of calling a turkey to you.

Take Aways

  • Turkey hunting is most often an active sport because hen turkeys are constantly in motion. So if you move you are actually becoming more realistic.
  • Never move when a bird is close and coming to you, there is a time to move and a time for perfect stillness.
  • Even on small properties, there are times where small movements can make the difference.
  • If you call a lot, it can hurt you to stay in one spot. Hens just don’t do that.
  • Turkey hunting is like a dance at times, you move, they move, you move, they move, and hopefully you get the tom to work closer and closer.
  • Dress to move, pack light, and be nimble on your feet.
  • A little noise is ok. Turkeys make noise when they walk, and if a gobbler thinks you are a turkey then he will expect you to make a little noise when you move.
  • Listen to the episode to hear the 5 times you should move on a gobbling bird.

Show Notes:

Hunting turkeys on small parcels requires different strategy and technique to maximize your chances of success. On this episode I share practical step-by-step tips on how to make the most of small property gobbler hunts.

Take Aways

  • Turkeys do not know how big your parcel is or where the borders are, they are the same birds, what changes are your options for how you can hunt them.
  • You are not limited to the turkeys that are on your property, in fact your best chances could involve calling turkeys over from neighboring properties.
  • Scouting for birds uses the same principles but with a different approach for small areas. Look and listen for turkeys on nearby properties where your calls can reach but your boots are prohibited. 
  • Because turkey hunting is a close range sport, and your goal is to get birds within 30 yards, you likely have more areas and corners of a small property that are huntable than you might realize. 
  • Consider using a bow or crossbow if you are close to other buildings, this helps with safety and makes you less obvious and alarming if you take a shot.
  • Turkey habitat changes as the season goes on, it may improve or get worse as cover and food sources change. Just because there are no birds near your property today does not mean there wont be any in a week or two.
  • Don’t call the same way on a big property as a small one, you do not have the luxury of walking to a new area where the birds haven’t heard you. Less is usually better.
  • Scouting for setup locations is different for small properties, there are a few advantages available to you.
  • Think outside the box, some unconventional practices might be reasonable to try, simply because your options are limited.
  • Even if you only have a couple acres, you can still move a little to make your calling more realistic, especially if you are hunting from the same spot day-after-day.
  • Listen to the episode to hear the tips and strategies for hunting turkeys on small properties