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Old 01-12-2012, 11:50 AM   #1
fishintechnician
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Default new to turkey advice and tips

Hey guys I plan on turkey hunting this spring as i recently got some new land/areas to hunt that are loaded with birds.....had two seperate ocasions bow hunting where i saw 20+ birds at one time. And saw or heard birds almost everytime in these woods. The thing is I have never hunted these birds, how do I go about hunting them. Do I need decoys? I know i'll need calls but what kind? Im trying to figure out as much as I can early that way Ill be ready come april. Also how should I set up on birds? The properties that htese birds are on are quite expansive with not alot of open/grass areas. Just have no clue where to start and figured some of the experts on here could help out.

Thanks alot
Anson
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Old 01-12-2012, 05:42 PM   #2
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Turkey hunting is magical.
1. learn the basic calls. You have box, slate and diaphram calls. Each has it own use but all will get the job done. You can go on line to hear and practice the birds calls. Just do not over call. Less is best for newbie.
2. The big flocks you see now are winter groups that will break away to smaller groups by spring. A Flock can wander and feed over a large area over a day. The spring groups look for a denser cover for nesting to hide from predators. I have seen winter groups in the hundreds.
3. About a month before season hit the property before daybreak and listen for birds on roost. Hang back and keep hiden. Scope out their activity with binoculars and make notes of roosting area flydown areas, feeding areas and Gobler stut lanes. I know guys that call to birds at this time to help locate them but; this also has a tendency to educate the birds as well. It can make it allot harder to bring a old bird in come season openner. Jakes are allot dummer, they will come in on string.
4. Head to toe camo which includes face netting and gloves. If you wear glasses do not set up into the sun. The glass reflection will just send the birds away. Try to set up a ambush point near the flydown areas that you can work the birds into you before they can group up. A Gobler will hardly ever leave a group of hens for one he don't see. If they make it to groups you'll have to wait untill later in morning to bring a bird in after the hens head for nesting or show no interest. They seem to start breaking away after 9am thru noon. a few of my birds were shot just before noon.
5. Decoys have worked for me. I never have shot a bird without decoys. A hen and jake decoy has worked fine for me. I would also consider a seat or pad for sitting on with a large tree at your back if using your shotgun. If using a bow or crossbow I would suggest a ground blind to help conceal any movements. I have blinked my eyes and had birds take off running. Their greatest asset are their eyes. So once you spot them they can see you as well. This is the hardest time of the hunt trying not move.
6. What ever you chose as a weapon make sure you know its limits as well as your own. Practice your calling, Scout your areas well. Most of all keep it simple and do not try to move on birds. I have owned land that only I hunted so I thought until one day I tried to move on some birds and almost got my head blown off. You never know whats out there so always treat it as there is a hunter behind every bush and tree.

This was just some basics to get started with I'm sure there will be allot more and better advice coming!
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Old 01-12-2012, 07:22 PM   #3
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Hey guys I plan on turkey hunting this spring as i recently got some new land/areas to hunt that are loaded with birds.....had two seperate ocasions bow hunting where i saw 20+ birds at one time. And saw or heard birds almost everytime in these woods. The thing is I have never hunted these birds, how do I go about hunting them. Do I need decoys? I know i'll need calls but what kind? Im trying to figure out as much as I can early that way Ill be ready come april. Also how should I set up on birds? The properties that htese birds are on are quite expansive with not alot of open/grass areas. Just have no clue where to start and figured some of the experts on here could help out.

Thanks alot
Anson
not to be debby downer most birds dont winter the same place the hang in the spring... best thing i can tell you is sit still dont move...learn your calls ..dont over call let the birds set the pace ..if they call a lot you call a lot ..and some big toms will take what seams like for ever to come in ..and some will run you over to get to you ..you can kill toms with out a decoy..

sent you a pm
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Old 01-12-2012, 10:25 PM   #4
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I feel that if your hunting in large fields and open areas then a decoy can be some help. But if it's mostly wooded and visability is short go without. If a turkey is in the woods, it knows it's going to have to get closer to the call to see the "hen". If the call is coming from a wide open field, that turkey knows it should see the hen from alot further distance. If he doesn't see her, many times they'll hang up or turn and run. They're not dumb birds and this has been a good rule of thumb in my experience. Good luck! It's addicting!

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Old 01-13-2012, 03:18 PM   #5
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thanks for all the input keep in coming.....what shot do you guys use.....and choke?
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Old 01-13-2012, 03:43 PM   #6
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Find the birds the night before or realy early in the morning. About an hour before light sneak in their with 3 things.
1.shotgun
2.locator call
3.mouth call
This is all you need. Find where they are roosting and most people don't know this but the hens will roost in a differnt tree then the gobblers and the hens will stay in the tree longer. If you can find the hens tree then the gobblers will be close. Set up as close to the tree as you can by being silent and wait. Do not call. The gobblers will sneak right up to you and try to get where the hens are landing all you'll have a close shot.
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Old 01-13-2012, 03:46 PM   #7
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4-6 shot and xtra full choke for me. If hes coming in keep the calling to a minimum and make it soft!

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Old 01-13-2012, 03:51 PM   #8
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Get an actual turkey load. 3-31/2'' is what we use. If you get an after market choke you can slam them at 60 yards no problem
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Old 01-15-2012, 09:10 AM   #9
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Pattern you gun extensively.
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Old 01-15-2012, 01:01 PM   #10
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Pattern you gun extensively.
Absolutely! Know where that gun is hitting. It will save alot of heart aches down the road.

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Old 01-16-2012, 05:25 PM   #11
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Being a beginner listen to some "real hen" sounds either from video's or Cd's. Learn some turkey talk(right sequence of calling). Most call TOO much and TOO loud. You don't need to sound like a pro but having the right sequence of calling will help tremendously. Use the call that you can use the best. Mouth calls are tough to master for most. Slates and boxes are probably the easiest. Be patient and limit your movement. Move your eyes and not your head...trust me they will bust you in a heartbeat. Pattern that gun and know your limits. They are tough birds to kill! Don't try to get too close to them...if they bust you you"ll have NO CHANCE to call him in. Birds act differently everyday so stick with it. One day he may gobble his head off and not come and tomorrow he gobbles and comes in a running. Making your chances count is the difference between and unfilled tag or a bird in the back of your truck
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Old 01-17-2012, 04:17 PM   #12
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thanks guys im going to be looking for some calls/decoys soon what type do you guys like? The gun I plan on using will only tkae 2 3/4 loads so that what ill have to go with, do they make an actual turkey load in 2 3/4? also the gun is not camo (it has a matte finish) does it have to be? I may try and get a few of you pros to accompany me if any one would be interested. Don't know where you all are but i will be hunting in union and marion county and possibly morgan/athens counties. Again thanks for all the info guys
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Old 03-02-2012, 04:56 PM   #13
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like the guy said earlier, box call, mouth call, and a slate call. practice them alot get familiar. all hooter crow call or gobble call to use as a locater call for preseason scouting. as much as youll want to call them when your scouting leave your calls at home and dont educate em. i shoot 3 1/2 in. #6 2 1/4 oz. out of a xxx choke tube. ive killed birds at 63 yards with it. a blind is nice especially when its raining. alot of the info the guys before me has said is absolutely right. deecoys work sometimes and sometimes they dont and scare the birds away. good luck to ya.
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Old 01-17-2012, 08:52 PM   #14
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The 2 3/4" will work, but you will not have the density of shot or the long range. Pattern it with different loads to see what works. I use an 870 w/ 2 3/4" chambers & Federal 5's are the best I've tried. Not comfortable past 35 yards (absolute max) , but am planning on trying different chokes this year. Mine is an old wingmaster with the gloss finish so you're one up on me, but I've gotten a couple birds with my gun.
Use the calls that work best for you, not what works for others. My son is pretty good with mouth calls, but I suck. Box & slates for me & I have tried a ton of them.
PM me if you want to get together & talk about turkeys & the upcoming season.
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Old 01-18-2012, 12:27 AM   #15
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thanks guys im going to be looking for some calls/decoys soon what type do you guys like? The gun I plan on using will only tkae 2 3/4 loads so that what ill have to go with, do they make an actual turkey load in 2 3/4? also the gun is not camo (it has a matte finish) does it have to be? I may try and get a few of you pros to accompany me if any one would be interested. Don't know where you all are but i will be hunting in union and marion county and possibly morgan/athens counties. Again thanks for all the info guys
I use an 870 with a wood stock and matte finished blued barrel. I shot 2 3/4 copper plated lead remington turkey loads in #5. Send them through a remingtong extra full extended turkey choke that i bought of the rack at dick's and my comfortable range is at 40 yrds. I've killed most of my birds within 20 yrds. Never needed a follow up. The "little" shells will do the job as long as you pattern your gun and know what your comfortable range is. I've thought about dipping my gun in camo but i can't say that i've ever been busted because of the color of my gun..... it's usually just one of my idiot manuvers that ruins the morning. Lol

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Old 01-18-2012, 12:07 PM   #16
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ok guys thanks alot im going to start looking at gear soon and seeing what chokes i can find for my gun then start shootin to patern it. T180 i may take you up on your offer, anything i can do to cut my learning curve would be great. thanks guys
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Old 01-18-2012, 04:15 PM   #17
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As well as picking our brains there is a ton of turkey hunting info available on line. Videos, recorded calls and equipment advice. Like any sport you can go broke buying everything you think you need. I prefer a slate call myself. I carry 2 slates, 1 box call. I use all of them because they each have their own tone quality. I feel it also helps to confuse a big old tom when he hears multiple birds in one area. But with that being said I have one slate that always seals the deal. Every bird I have downed was using this one call. When you over work an area the birds will know when you get there. They will start to associate your closing of a vehicle door to a hunter coming in to their back yard and start being more alert for movement.Learn to close all doors softly if your within 200 yards of where you will set up. I set my decoys at 20 paces from where I will be seated so when they are by the decoys I know they will be in safe range for my gun
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Old 01-18-2012, 06:27 PM   #18
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You don"t need to do anything fancy to your gun. You could buy some cheap camo tape and apply it in various spots. The matte finish is very helpful in sunny conditions. As far as loads shoot what works best out of your gun. I personally love the heavy shot although it is expensive. IMOP lead does not compare to this stuff. If you roll a few birds you'll wish you were using the heavy shot...it hits harder and carry's more energy down range. They say it's like using two shot sizes larger then lead. So heavy shot #7's should hit like lead shot#5's. And being your using a 2 3/4 in shell your gonna have a lot more pellets with the #7 heavy shot. I've shot a lot of turkeys and I can tell you heavy shot is the bomb on these birds! But again make sure you pattern your gun and know it's limits. As a rule the HS usually patterns better too.My 3 1/2in 12ga with supermax choke tube(Indian Creek) with #5 HS is good to 60yds. I have shot a few at this range and many never even flutter!
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Old 01-18-2012, 07:23 PM   #19
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ok guys check my gun and it will use 3 in, it is a ithaca m87 but im having a hard time finding a choke for it any suggestions? this may help a few of you with load recomendations as well.....was shopping online today, didnt buy anything but found alot of cool stuff, I guesse i will be making a cabelas trip within a month or two
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Old 01-19-2012, 08:24 AM   #20
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fishintechnician i'd wait till the deer and turkey expo march 16th-18th http://www.deerinfo.com/ohiohome.asp
i always find good deals there. good luck this spring
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