OG shop member gallery
OldGobbler
          bullet Forum Board      bullet Pushpin Turkey Call Blog      bullet Advertising Info     

OG Gear Store

Sum Toy
Dave Smith
Wood Haven
DC Cattle Ranch






Author Topic: Success Rate Once You Get Him Gobbling?  (Read 2198 times)

Offline BDeal

  • Sr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 141
Success Rate Once You Get Him Gobbling?
« on: May 22, 2019, 12:24:21 PM »
So I've had about a dozen encounters this year where I was able to get a Tom to respond repeatedly and we went back and forth. I'm not talking about a distant gobbler that mostly doesn't respond but throws out a random gobble now and then. I'm talking Toms that are engaged a bit in the back and forth and typically come closer as I call. Of those dozen or so encounters, I was able to get the birds into kill range around 30% of the time and much of that (although not all) was in the earlier seasons (I'm hunting pressured birds and have no other options). Does 30% seem low as it feels low but if I look at it as 1 out of every 3 it seems pretty good but it's not feeling good right now as I have had a bunch of encounters in the last few days where I had them right on the cusp of getting a shot but it didn't work out.

I feel I am overcalling in these situations also after reading some stuff on here. Can you guys comment on how frequent and what calls you make when you are actively engaged with a responding Tom as I know I'm doing some things wrong here.

Thank You!

Offline Southerngobbler

  • Sr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 189
Re: Success Rate Once You Get Him Gobbling?
« Reply #1 on: May 22, 2019, 01:32:03 PM »
If your hunting birds that are getting hunted by other people on a regular basis I would say calling in one out of three would be an amazingly high success rate.

Offline BDeal

  • Sr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 141
Re: Success Rate Once You Get Him Gobbling?
« Reply #2 on: May 22, 2019, 01:37:20 PM »
I'm only talking about the Toms that actively engage vocally back and forth. There are many more where I get a few gobbles but I'm not counting those types of encounters.

Offline Happy

  • 2018 SITE SUPPORTER
  • Double Beard
  • ********
  • Posts: 2634
Re: Success Rate Once You Get Him Gobbling?
« Reply #3 on: May 22, 2019, 04:42:26 PM »
Crunched the numbers and i ran a 71% average this year. That is hunting public land as well as hunting club property. I would suspect that I typically run around 60% most years though.

Offline LaLongbeard

  • 2019 SITE SUPPORTER
  • Longbeard
  • ********
  • Posts: 1718
  • Louisiana
Re: Success Rate Once You Get Him Gobbling?
« Reply #4 on: May 22, 2019, 05:43:34 PM »
As stated 1 out of 3 is pretty good. Between the first answering gobble and either the shot happening  or you realize he’s not coming, a couple hundred things could happen to many to list but right off the top, a real hen shows up and leads him away, he got close enough without you realizing it and saw movement etc. he decided he wasn’t going to the hen she should come to him,predator showed up. Unless you can see the Gobbler the whole time you can’t  know for sure why he didn’t continue coming in after answering. Nobody kills them all nobody I don’t care if your 14 or 97 or if your a direct lineal descendant of Daniel Boone himself it’s just the way it is.
As for the calling type and frequency every situation is different. Sometimes complete silence is the correct tactic, sometimes loud cutting and yelping,sometimes just light scratching in the leaves. There is no template or set routine that works every time.  Experience  gained from a lot of interactions with Gobblers is the only way to learn how to figure out what to do and even after a hundred dead Gobblers you still make the wrong desicon sometimes. It’s the mental part of turkey  hunting that makes it a challenge and a sport. The shooting of a Gobbler is easy the rest takes skill.
« Last Edit: May 22, 2019, 06:30:38 PM by LaLongbeard »
If you make everything easy how do you know when your good at anything?

Offline stinkpickle

  • Long Spur Gobbler
  • ******
  • Posts: 6184
  • "Milk was a bad choice!"
Re: Success Rate Once You Get Him Gobbling?
« Reply #5 on: May 22, 2019, 06:00:45 PM »
For me, the distance makes a bigger difference than the intensity of our "conversation".  If we're more than 100-150 yards apart, my chances of killing him drop quite a bit.

Online sasquatch1

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 398
Success Rate Once You Get Him Gobbling?
« Reply #6 on: May 22, 2019, 06:04:23 PM »
For me, the distance makes a bigger difference than the intensity of our "conversation".  If we're more than 100-150 yards apart, my chances of killing him drop quite a bit.


This, my number average is prob 70% ish I feel. “Getting then to come in” .I haven’t kept track but most that engage with me usually end up coming in once I can get setup on him right. Killing them sometimes is a little different story.

Now there’s also been many in range I couldn’t get shots on or sometimes even see due to the thickness of the woods.

This isn’t your once or twice heard birds now. I’m going with ones that stay going and engaging long enough for me to get in tight and setup good.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
« Last Edit: May 25, 2019, 08:14:27 AM by sasquatch1 »

Offline Happy

  • 2018 SITE SUPPORTER
  • Double Beard
  • ********
  • Posts: 2634
Re: Success Rate Once You Get Him Gobbling?
« Reply #7 on: May 22, 2019, 08:13:02 PM »
I guess for me the biggest thing is getting inside his wheelhouse. The tighter you get the higher the odds go. If I strike one at a distance I am gonna be a lot closer before he hears another sound from me. Murphy loves Turkey hunters and the more space you leave between you and the bird the more chance for something to go wrong. I dont have set rules on calling. I let the bird dictate that. Many overcall a bird and hang him up but sometimes you have to pour it to them to keep their interest. It's never going to be a 100% success rate when dealing with turkeys and I am glad it's not. I will say something I did a little different this year is very little cold calling. I would wait for one to gobble on his own. That let me get a jump on him and already be in a much better position to start the match.

Offline Yoder409

  • 2017 SITE SUPPORTER
  • Longbeard
  • ********
  • Posts: 1673
  • Turkeys are ignorant.
Re: Success Rate Once You Get Him Gobbling?
« Reply #8 on: May 22, 2019, 08:46:44 PM »
Too many variables to answer that question.  Mostly it depends on the ignorance level of the birds that particular year.

This spring, I was 4 for 4 on actively engaged birds.  In 2017 I can not even TELL you how many times I had the dot turned on and the safe off, only to get hosed BIG TIME.   Some years you gotta beat 'em off with a stick.  Other years you can hardly BUY one...……………. 
The good Lord ain't made a gobbler I can't kill.  I just gotta be there at the right time on the day he wants to die.

Offline Marc

  • Longbeard
  • ****
  • Posts: 1732
Re: Success Rate Once You Get Him Gobbling?
« Reply #9 on: May 23, 2019, 12:06:32 AM »
30% seems like a good average...

Generally early in the season, birds are henned up, and stay with the toms most of the day...  Those toms still gobble at my calling but will not leave the hens...  And all so often if I do get a lone bird early on coming in, a hen will intercept and steal him...

Now mid season and late morning, if I can bet a bird to gobble it is game on...  Percentages are far higher.

I have wasted a lot of time working in jakes as well...  Maybe because birds breed earlier in my area, or maybe it is Rio's, but the jakes and toms sound alike to me...  One of the bigger birds I killed had a weird half-gobble that I was sure was a jake, till he came in struttin' with a swingin' beard.

I think the terrain plays a huge role as well.  If the woods and hills allow you to reposition without detection, it can make a huge difference in success...  Hunting birds in more open and flat rolling oaks is easier to get around in, but far more difficult to reposition on birds than some of the steeper and brushier areas I hunt.
Did I do that?

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

Offline GobbleNut

  • Paintbrush Beard
  • *****
  • Posts: 3096
  • Southern New Mexico
Re: Success Rate Once You Get Him Gobbling?
« Reply #10 on: May 23, 2019, 08:35:38 AM »
If your hunting birds that are getting hunted by other people on a regular basis I would say calling in one out of three would be an amazingly high success rate.
I'm only talking about the Toms that actively engage vocally back and forth. There are many more where I get a few gobbles but I'm not counting those types of encounters.

I agree entirely with the premise that the harder the birds are hunted, the lower the percentage of gobblers that will come to the call.  In addition, "active engagement" with gobblers is often a function of where and what subspecies you are hunting.  For instance, Merriam's gobblers are vocal and will often engage you in conversation,...but have absolutely no intention of ever coming to your calling if they are being hunted hard.  30% would be a pretty good average.

On the other hand, find a pocket of Merriam's turkeys that, for whatever reason, have not been hammered by hunters, and the success rate for calling gobblers in can skyrocket.  This spring, on a pretty hard-hunted national forest, I stumbled into an area that, for whatever reason, no one else was hunting.  I hunted two mornings, called in every gobbler I engaged (5) and killed my two birds.  Two days later, I took two of my buddies in there,...called in four out of five birds worked.  One of those friends took his wife in two days after that and called in two gobblers in one set-up and she killed one.

All in all, we called in 11 gobblers out of 12 worked in four mornings and killed five of them,...and almost certainly could have killed three more if we were "counting bodies". 

We most likely could have hunted anywhere else in a thirty mile radius of that spot and maybe had a 30% success rate,...if we were lucky.  The point being that sometimes success rates are just a matter of random, pure luck in hitting the right birds at the right time in the right spot.
The Original Keyboard Commando
Member of the OG Troll A-Hole Patrol
(Join up!  Membership is Free!)

Offline Bay1985

  • Full Member
  • *
  • Posts: 32
  • Louisiana
Re: Success Rate Once You Get Him Gobbling?
« Reply #11 on: May 23, 2019, 02:17:32 PM »
60-70% success on Gobblers that have answered you a couple times? Were are y’all hunting? 1 in 3
are pretty good numbers. I care more about long term success over the whole season not so much how many I set up on per kill. Everyone will hit those hot streaks when you make back to back kills but they tend to balance out with the cold streaks ,anyone that has been at this long knows not to bet on percentages . I take it one Gobbler at a time one state at a time.

Offline BDeal

  • Sr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 141
Re: Success Rate Once You Get Him Gobbling?
« Reply #12 on: May 23, 2019, 02:59:03 PM »
I logged all of my "engaged encounters" for 2019 over a 6 week period  and I'm calling about 25% of them into kill range, not the 30% I had originally thought. So about 1 in 4. I'm almost always trying to call them off of private property onto the land I have access to as it's extremely difficult to get access near where I live and in most cases I do not have the option to move closer to the gobbler. He has to come to me. Most of the birds I have been engaged with have been with hens. One group I have had engaged 4-5 times and I have been able to get the hens to come on occasion and the boys have come with but usually the whole group hangs up 70-100 yards from me. There are about a dozen in this flock and they are still together and roost together (I saw them again this morning). I cannot move closer to the roosting area as the landowner does not allow hunting.

Offline MK M GOBL

  • Longbeard
  • ****
  • Posts: 1625
  • Gobbler Guru
Re: Success Rate Once You Get Him Gobbling?
« Reply #13 on: May 23, 2019, 03:29:42 PM »
So I haved looked at our states average success rate which just includes everything, and that is around 25% annually. Could be week of bad weather, inexperienced/novice hunters and what not. Years ago while I was guiding I kept track of every turkey and tag, it was part of the guides way of promoting the business, at that time I was running a 90%+ success rate. I have always kept a detailed ledger/journal of my turkey hunts/hunting.

Can't just measure success by kill numbers...

Making Memories :)

MK M GOBL

Offline Bay1985

  • Full Member
  • *
  • Posts: 32
  • Louisiana
Re: Success Rate Once You Get Him Gobbling?
« Reply #14 on: May 24, 2019, 10:10:45 AM »
So I haved looked at our states average success rate which just includes everything, and that is around 25% annually. Could be week of bad weather, inexperienced/novice hunters and what not. Years ago while I was guiding I kept track of every turkey and tag, it was part of the guides way of promoting the business, at that time I was running a 90%+ success rate. I have always kept a detailed ledger/journal of my turkey hunts/hunting.

Can't just measure success by kill numbers...

Making Memories :)

MK M GOBL
I’ve seen several of your Gobbler kills you’ve posted. Honest question without the blind/decoys and  hunting private crop fields do you think you’d still have a 90% success rate?I mean your obviously hunting some good private spots with good populations. The turkeys are going to the fields everyday regardless if you call or not. They see the decoys and at least a few will be aggressive enough to walk over to the Jake or strutter decoy. I think your averages would suffer  if you hunted public land woods Gobblers without the fields decoys or not.