Chasing Turkeys by Carbon Express Pro Shooter

October 30, 2013 by  
Filed under Bowhunting Tips, Turkey Tips

Archery Turkey Tips    By: Don France – Carbon Express Pro Staff

New turkey hunters can get all sorts of advice and stories.  After my first successful archery turkey hunt 10 years ago – I’m hooked!  You will be too.

When I get to go turkey hunting I try not to leave anything to chance.  To Bowhunt turkeys, a hunter should be well practiced until they can consistently shoot broadhead tipped hunting arrows in tight groups out to 20 or even 30 yards.  I like to use my same set-up as I use for deer hunting which includes a Mathews Solo Cam bow, drop away rest, Carbon Express arrows, and Muzzy 4 blade broadheads.  The Tom Turkey in the photo was my first with a bow.  The shot was close, 6 yards.

My favorite time to hunt is when turkeys can be spotted out displaying and feeding in spring-green fields.  It is simple enough to spot a good tom that way and then slip in on them within the hour to get in position and set up a decoy on the edge of cover.  Then just a couple of hen yelps is all it takes to get the boys attention to head over to investigate.

Every spare lunch hour I like to glass the fields surrounding my hunting area.  When I get my chance, I grab my turkey vest packed with hen decoys, camo umbrella, laser rangefinder, binoculars, folding stool, and calls.  If necessary, I prepare with rubber boots and bug spray to be able to slog through swamp maybe a quarter mile or more to get in position out of sight from the turkeys.

Any natural cover such as an overgrown briar bush can provided enough cover to hide behind.  In addition a camo umbrella can be quickly put up to help cover movement while drawing and used on the ground along the trunk of a tree. Be sure to hide within an area large enough to draw while kneeling.

The above-pictured turkey fell to this tactic with a well-placed Carbon Express Arrow.  Four gobblers spotted my lonely hen decoy from across a green field and like heat seeking missiles came trotting in. The larger Tom circled back show his tail feathers.  When the others got to about 10 yards of the hen decoy, the last Tom relaxed some and turned his focus towards the decoy sitting about 9 yards away from me.  My bowstring silently came back, and the green fiber optic sight pin settled over the Tom’s wing butt as he advanced closer.  When the bearded Tom stopped for a moment, the 4-blade Muzzy passed through and the gobblers ran for cover; except mine which more or less quickly walked to just out of sight.

Time always seems to stop for me as I wonder how I might track something that leaves almost no sign compared to a heavy, sharp hoofed deer.  It would take some 15 minutes to inspect the hit location, try to find my arrow, collect my hen decoy and repack my vest.  Just doing those simple tasks helps relax the adrenaline surge.

A vital hit turkey trail may not be obvious.  I found some blood spots and then proceeded slowly to look in the area the turkey went.  Another red spot on a green leaf along a faint game trail indicated a direction of travel.  My first gobbler was shortly recovered on that trail just 80 yards from where my arrow first connected with the bird.

After a few seasons of turkey bowhunts, I learned 10 important things.

1.    Safety first. Use your common sense.
2.    Success largely depends on preparation.  Do your homework –scouting, practice calling, shooting turkey targets, etc. The wild turkey is recognized as a supreme challenge to hunt one on one.
3.    Know your shooting capabilities and limitations.  Be positive of your target.  Be aware that it could be a turkey or another hunter approaching your calls and decoy.
4.    Don’t attempt an approach closer than 100 yards. A turkey’s ability to see and hear is well refined. Camouflage cannot make you completely invisible if you move.  A turkey can detect your slightest movement.
5.    Move in carefully to not spook other game (especially deer). Turkeys seem to notice and also spook.
7.    Select a tree or bush wide enough to conceal your outline, but don’t hide so well that you can’t see. Select a calling site that allows you to see in all directions.
8.    Locate birds. Scout for tracks, fresh droppings and feathers. Good areas for sighting flocks are in idle fields and woodlands and near logging trails.  Locate a good food source where birds are congregating and learn the habits of the birds.
9.    Listen for the sounds of birds scratching in the leaves or listen for their “flock talk” as they come and go to roost. Roosting flocks may produce a wide variety of “yelps,” “clucks,” “kee-kees” and “gobbles.”
10.    Quickly set up at where you find turkeys.
11.    Begin calling the turkeys by imitating the same flock sounds. Answer every turkey call heard with similar tone, pitch and rhythm. Using a decoy also may help fool birds into approaching your location or distract them enough to allow you a shot.
Good luck.

Special thanks to:
AEP, Alpen Optics, Axion Archery Hunting Sights, BCY Inc., Bohning Archery, Carbon Express & Eastman Outdoors, Classic Archery Scopes, Country Archery Pro Shop & Range, Custom Bow Equipment, Gorilla Treestands, HCG Grips, Hunting Shack Outdoors LLC, Muzzy, Opti-Logic, Stick’em Archery, Sweet Plots, Tree Saddle & Trophyline LLC, and TRU-Ball. I shoot a Mathews.

Originally posted 2010-04-01 22:08:30. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

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