Hunting Pressured Turkeys
If you only have a few hours to hunt in the morning, it would be better to first pattern the gobbler for a few mornings—without calling—to find out where he goes when he hits the ground. That way, you can meet him there one morning. Or, if a roosted gobbler continually flies down in the opposite direction of your calling, team up with a buddy.
Have him set up so that your calling pushes the tom toward him instead. When time is running out on your hunt, it may be worth staging a title bout between two heavyweight gobblers. Use the guttural fighting purrs of toms, together with wing-flapping sounds and a ruckus in the leaves, to simulate a battle for dominance.
6 Steps To Beating Hunting Pressure
In small woodlots and heavily hunted public areas, though, taking it to the tom can quickly burn out the area. An aggressive approach results in more bumping of birds, causing them to avoid calls. If you need to hear gobbling to keep up your confidence, set up in the morning within hearing distance of the roost, but not so close as to risk being detected.
At the very least, this passive approach will preserve your hunting spot for another day in the woods. Manitoba magic: The day that fishing loved me back. Video: How to make your lure stand out from the crowd.
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Hunting Pressured Turkeys - eBook
Set up the most natural scenario possible in terms of what you're doing and where you're doing it. You've got to bring your A-Game when you're hunting public land. Staying after other hunters have left for home is one of Wallis' key strategies. He recommends taking a pack with everything needed to stay comfortable, because after hunters leave, things usually settle down in the woods. And after hens sneak off to nest, gobblers start looking hard for hens to breed. Though Wallis confesses to a fondness for running and gunning, he suggests a switch for those working public land in the spring.
As such, he recommends doing something different, such as changing cadence, and calling light and quiet.
But above all, have patience. Give that gobbler time.
Hunting Pressured Turkeys by Brian Lovett (ebook)
Like calling, Wallis claims decoy use needs to be taken into special consideration when working in a potential crowd. Do what the birds are doing. And face the strutter or jake decoy toward where you think the birds are going to come from. Now there's no denying that gobblers can be tough customers, even for a world champion caller.
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Throw in the challenges of pursuing North America's largest game bird on public land, and you've transformed the mildly difficult into, quite possibly, the downright impossible. But, with a good dose of patience and a break from the routine in terms of calling, scouting and decoy use, these pressured longbeards can come a bit easier.
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Hunters who spook turkeys — that is, everyone at some point — often question how to overcome the mistake and hunt that bumped bird. These tips might help.
Hunt another bird or another farm for a week or more. Even pressured turkeys often filter back into areas with previously high hunter traffic after a few days of peace. After all, they favored the spot for a reason, whether it was hens, food or loafing areas. If left alone, they might return. Make darn sure to avoid bumping a previously spooked turkey again.
Be extremely cautious in your approach to a roosted bird and about your movements while setting up. Often, a careless turn of the head or hasty walk out of the woods is all it takes to bump a bird again. Use all your woodsmanship skills to avoid detection. Remain aware, listen for drumming and scan your surroundings for any flicker of movement. Spooked and pressured turkeys are notorious for answering calling and approaching your position but then hanging up out of range or at a property line.