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Author Topic: Turkey hunting frustration  (Read 897 times)

Offline logy

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Turkey hunting frustration
« on: April 28, 2022, 09:08:10 PM »
Hey Guys,

The season just opened in my state. Due to life issues I have gotten out of hunting, but this year I decided to make it a priotity again. Back in 2020 (during the shut down) I found a decent public spot. I had a close call that year, but I missed my shot. Since then I have not been back out until yesterday.

I wasn't able to make a morning hunt happen, but I was able to get out around 1000. I sat until about 1330 and did not have much action, I did call a hen in, but never heard a gobble.

Lastnight I decided to wake up early and get after it this AM. I got to the spot about 0600. I didn't have a chance to roost a bird so essentially I was going in blind. My plan was to make a move if I heard a bird from the parking lot and if I didn't I was going to scout a new place of property I found.

Around 0630 I heard one starting to gobble. He was close, but I wasn't sure if he was on the property. Long story short I ended up setting up on him, but he was about 100 yards from me on the other ridge line (on private property) I was able to watch him strutt on the limb. Eventually he flew down and the hens followed him. Once he was on the ground he never gobbled again. I knew my chances where slim of working him because the terrian has a lot of ridges and valleys (I will include a photo) and already having hens with him.

I decided to pack up and try the other spot. On the way back to my car (less then a 5 minute walk) I heard putting. I froze and just stood there, eventually a hen spotted me and took off the other way, then another turkey ran in front of my car. I decided to walk over to the ridge and right as I did that I saw the 2 hens had a gobbler with him. ARG! I did not even know he was on the property with me, or that they were roosted that close to my vehicle!


I really like this piece of ground, it is about 100 acres, and from what I can tell it does not get much hunting pressure.

Advice?

How do you guys suggest hunting a piece of property that is just ridges and valleys? Included is a topo map of the place I hunt. Red lines mark the private property and I marked where I saw the turkeys this am. It is all hardwood forest with what appears to be logging trails on top of the ridges (many many many years ago).

Are locator calls worth investing in? I havent used them since I first started turkey hunting.

I think it would help me to roost the birds. Would you guys just go to the parking lot and listen the night before a hunt?

Any other advice for me?

Online GobbleNut

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Re: Turkey hunting frustration
« Reply #1 on: April 29, 2022, 09:27:50 AM »
Here's the best advice I can give you:
Regardless of the terrain and other circumstances, assuming one has a fundamental understanding of calling and the associated woods skills, success almost invariably comes down to the 'Three P's"....Persistence, Perseverance, and Patience (where appropriate). 

To summarize that advice:  Every day you spend hunting that area (or any other), the more pieces of the puzzle you should gather about the terrain and the habits of the turkeys living there.  Once you have put in enough time and effort doing that, you should be able to figure out how to approach your hunt to eventually put yourself in position to kill a gobbler there.   :icon_thumright:

Now, granted, sometimes we run out of hunting time before all those pieces are assembled....  ;D

Offline redleg06

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Re: Turkey hunting frustration
« Reply #2 on: April 29, 2022, 10:29:18 PM »
I'd take notice of the birds each roosting on the points of the ridges, then go roost them the night before to verify which one they're on. Then set up on them early (still very dark) once you know which ridge (or better yet, which tree) they're out on.  I'd be trying to get just above them so when their feet hit the ground, they dont have to walk very far to come check you out...ideally, they'd be in gun range as soon as they crested the lip of the ridge.

Offline Paulmyr

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Re: Turkey hunting frustration
« Reply #3 on: May 02, 2022, 12:16:43 AM »
Every bird on that 100 acres and surrounding properties can most likely hear you no matter where you chose to set up. My advice, don't move around so much.
Paul Myrdahl

Offline jims

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Re: Turkey hunting frustration
« Reply #4 on: May 04, 2022, 02:24:40 PM »
As mentioned above patience pays!  Calling and hiking such a small piece of property is the worse thing you can do!  Kicking back and spending as much time as possible sitting and listening and not spooking turkeys is likely your best bet for success.

Offline Turkeybutt

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Re: Turkey hunting frustration
« Reply #5 on: May 05, 2022, 04:01:42 PM »
GobbleNut, Redleg6, Paulmyr and jims just gave you some great advice.
100 acres isn’t much in the turkey world and to quote Paulmyr, “Every bird on those 100 acres and surrounding properties can most likely hear you no matter where you chose to set up. My advice, don't move around so much”.

If they didn’t hear you they most likely seen you moving around from setup to setup. Pick a spot commit to it and study the terrain and how the birds move through it. That will give you a leg up when hunting a small property.

GobbleNut  summed it up perfectly! Regardless of the terrain and other circumstances, assuming one has a fundamental understanding of calling and the associated woods skills, success almost invariably comes down to the 'Three P's"....Persistence, Perseverance, and Patience (where appropriate). 

To summarize that advice:  Every day you spend hunting that area (or any other), the more pieces of the puzzle you should gather about the terrain and the habits of the turkeys living there.  Once you have put in enough time and effort doing that, you should be able to figure out how to approach your hunt to eventually put yourself in position to kill a gobbler there. 
Now, granted, sometimes we run out of hunting time before all those pieces are assembled.
Good luck to you and keep us posted.

Offline rifleman

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Re: Turkey hunting frustration
« Reply #6 on: May 07, 2022, 08:08:38 AM »
When they aren't acting right as they are now in my part of WV.  I find an area with a bunch of sign.  Set down call loudly and then set back and cluck on my different calls.  Birds seems to really like the "bubble call" I do on my mouth call.  They will sneak in so be alert and don't move.  Decoys can help because they come looking for girls.  Patience, patience, patience.

Online Zobo

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Re: Turkey hunting frustration
« Reply #7 on: May 07, 2022, 10:23:49 PM »
Every bird on that 100 acres and surrounding properties can most likely hear you no matter where you chose to set up. My advice, don't move around so much.


This is solid advice, the birds can very accurately pinpoint where you're calling from.

Offline Marc

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Re: Turkey hunting frustration
« Reply #8 on: May 10, 2022, 03:59:08 PM »
Every bird on that 100 acres and surrounding properties can most likely hear you no matter where you chose to set up. My advice, don't move around so much.
This is solid advice, the birds can very accurately pinpoint where you're calling from.

I concur as well...  You should be able to figure out the preferred routes and areas of turkey use on 100 acres pretty quickly.

First couple times I hunt such a small area, if there are birds on the actual property, I will not move on them...  I watch, listen, and pay attention, without disturbing their behavior.  I will go back later and look at the areas the birds are using...  On such a small property, I would want to know every creek-bed, animal trail, and knoll on the property; I will carefully take note of a good hide for any area I plan to hunt in the future.  I will note the times of day that I physically see (or hear birds) on the property...  On such a small property, it is likely that there are times when the birds are on it, and times when they are not.

In the past, I hunted two different properties that were within 10 miles of each other...  On one property the birds were roosting on the property, but generally moved off as the morning progessed, and would often show up late afternoon again...  The other property never had birds roosting on it (that I could hear), but birds would move through that property late morning/early afternoon...  I hunted those properties at the time of day that the birds were more likely to be using it.

As you have a better understanding of the property, you might very well make a move on birds (if you can get around them).  Once you know the terrain, and understand the bird behavior on the property, you can use the terrain to make a strategic move...  Without this knowledge, you are just floundering around, and more likely to bump birds you do not even know about.

 
Did I do that?

Fly fishermen are born honest, but they get over it.

Offline Uncle Tom

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Re: Turkey hunting frustration
« Reply #9 on: May 11, 2022, 10:44:31 AM »
I would get on one of those ridges and set up on top where you could see a bird cresting it.....no more than 40 yds when his head tops it. Call lightly with soft clucks, light purrs, scratching in leaves.....about every 30 minutes and sometimes only once an hour....have killed a lot of birds doing this and I do not use decoys....want him to find me and not see a decoy that many times only spook him. Just my way and have no problem with guys using a decoy....I just like him coming in and with this soft calling and scratching leaves for me is the best way to get an ole gobbler that is looking for love. Just put in some time sitting those ridges, not moving around much, paying attention to what they are telling you....sooner or later it will pay off.