Turkey Hunting: Ammunition, Blinds, Calls, Camo, Choke Tubes, Decoys, Scopes, Sights & Turkey Hunting How To Guide.
To locate a turkey you first have to understand its habits no matter what time of year it is. A good pair of binoculars and a bit of steatlhy scouting is necessary to locate a turkey and where you find one you will find more, just remember they have very good eye-sight and will disappear before you even know that they were there, if they see you first, as is the case with most potential turkey hunters.
Fall Turkey Habits:
During the fall, turkeys begin to shift their ranges as food sources change to such items as dogwood fruits and oak acorns. Many times forests will provide better winter range for turkeys than other vegetative types, as mast foods such as acorns become available. Turkeys may move from pines into mixed pine-hardwood or hardwood stands during this period, but pine stands may continue to see heavy use in winter (pine seed is good turkey food).
Spring Turkey Habits:
During the spring, as winter flocks break up, a variety of forested habitats are used, but turkeys tend to move toward areas with greater amounts of openings such as pasture fields. Openings are used extensively during the spring breeding season as areas to display and mate. They also provide a food source of greens and insects.
Turkey Roosting Habits:
Turkeys roost in a variety of forested habitats but often prefer to roost in conifers located adjacent to a water source. On upland forested sites, turkeys frequently roost on slopes near ridgetops or knolls. Many times these roost sites offer protection from adverse weather, with the particular roost tree chosen for protection.
Once you have located the birds you have to choose a set-up to conceal you from the birds. Always mark your set-up with some type of orange tape or ribbon so that other turkey hunters in the area are aware of your location. If your set-up has you looking in only one direction, make sure that you have a large tree if possible at your back. A turkey could be called in by you that comes in from behind you, you may not see this bird but some other hunter might,
YOUR SAFETY FIRST AND FOREMOST.
A turkey has monocular vision, this can be attributed to their eyes being set on both sides of their head with a 300 degree viewing area. This allows them to view almost all of their surroundings without moving their head. For the turkey hunter, concealment is one of the most vital aspects of turkey hunting, using a turkey blind is an excellent way to be concealed from your quary.
Turkey decoys work extremely well on birds that are hard hunted often coaxing in the wariest of toms. The more realistic the decoy looks the better it will work. If you use a jake in your turkey decoy mix, position it closest to you as any big tom will confront the jake to drive it away from the hens. Most likely the shot you will take is going to be right at the decoys, so make sure the decoys are set where your shotgun is most effective for your choke and shotshell combination.
A gobbler can hear your calls and locate you from about a hundred yards away. At daybreak, when turkeys first come off the roost, use your call and do some cutting notes. Keep it brief, six seconds at most. Then make four or five yelping notes and wait approximately 20 minutes or so, then yelp a few more notes. Repeat this process approximately every twenty to thirty minutes for up to 2 hours.
A real good calling strategy that I use all the time is to use multiple calls made of different materials. This changes the pitch of your calls not sounding like one lone turkey more like several turkeys this allows me to call more often and usually its not long before turkeys start showing up. Wooden box calls and slate calls are my favorites.
- Cabela's Turkey Hunting 101 -