People who hunted the last week in January for deer with a crossbow may have thought that was the end of the hunting season and it was time to take a long winter’s nap. Well Spring Turkey season is just around the corner and this is a “Must to Do” in hunting. This season Spring Gobbler season opens 18 April and goes to 23 May. You are allowed 1 Bearded Bird per Day, 2 Bearded Birds per season if you did not take a bird in the fall season. There is a 16 April Junior Hunt as well. Hunting hours are one half hour before sunrise to noon. Some areas only allow hunting on Saturdays, so make sure you check your local game laws for hunting.Now when I went out crossbow hunting during the last week in January for deer, there were a few patches of left over snow from our previous storms. I had my 5 year old son in toe so that he could experience and learn hunting techniques. Of course how long can a 5 year old boy stay still in hunting? You know the answer, not very long. Well it was still a good hunt for we found fresh prints in the snow from turkey. This would be very helpful in determining what this season habits might be for the smart Tom Turkey.
I would expect a few more snow storms that will hit our area, so I highly recommend you get out and scout an area you are not familiar with and see if there is any turkey prints. It will not only let you know there are turkeys in the area, but also where to set up for your hunt in the spring. Plus, if you have a deer cam, you can set up your camera and get not only a picture of your game, but the time of day it was on the move.
As for calls, I use a Lynch Box call which I have used for many years and have called many Gobblers in close for a shot. Like I said in my last season article, when you call to a Gobbler (Male Turkey), you must act like a girl that is hard to get. Minimize your calling and move your position for your next call. Mr. Tom may have some hens already and may not return your call right away, but if he thinks he will lose out of another girlfriend, get ready when you get his interest. I have seen this behavior many times. You may have just called to Mr. Tom in an area just nearby to him, but as soon as the next call is heard going away, Mr. Tom will react and many times he will be running to you. Yes greed exists in the animal kingdom and Gobblers are no exception. More hens for the Gobbler means more “Sex”, and this is just a hard programmed behavior that you can use to your advantage.
My favorite call is the 3-4 clucks on the hen side of the Box call and I usually repeat it twice at one position. I sometimes add a strut call so to mix it up. I listen for any faint gobbles and if I hear a faint Gobble, that is pay dirt and the chess game begins. Be prepared if the Gobbler is running toward you as for your cover. I like to have a large tree trunk in front of me as I make my calls, with my shotgun in the ready. Hopefully you will bag that bird and have him in a deep fry for some tasty turkey that evening.
So get out there and locate your Gobbler. Get that bird and be safe.