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    • David Petersen
      Member
      Post count: 2749

      Hey, doesn’t turkey season start in March in some southeastern states? I keep waiting for you to start talking about it. Even here, it’s getting CLOSE …

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    • David Coulter
      Member
      Post count: 2270

      I wouldn’t swear to it, but I’m pretty sure I heard a gobble on Sunday morning here. I ran into a flock a few minutes after that on the ridge and then saw a few more that flew out of trees down closer to the house. They got a very early start last year and the season was did not go well for a lot of hunters in PA. dwcphoto

    • Bruce Smithhammer
      Post count: 2514

      Still 5 weeks away here, but it’s already starting to preoccupy my thoughts…

    • Jason Wesbrock
      Member
      Post count: 762

      dwcphoto wrote: I wouldn’t swear to it, but I’m pretty sure I heard a gobble on Sunday morning here. I ran into a flock a few minutes after that on the ridge and then saw a few more that flew out of trees down closer to the house. They got a very early start last year and the season was did not go well for a lot of hunters in PA. dwcphoto

      My wife and I were up at our Wisconsin property a couple weeks ago. It was rather odd to hear a tom gobbling for a good half hour first thing on a February morning. It felt more like April.

      Last spring was my daughter’s first bowhunt ever, so I basically called for her. We both had tags, but my agreement with her was that my arrows stayed in the quiver until she had her tag on a bird. That morning we saw three coyotes, two small black bears (which weren’t supposed to be anywhere near that part of Wisconsin), a couple deer, some hens, and two huge toms. Unfortunately, neither of the toms would leave their hens and come within her bow range (but they were well within mine). Regardless, it was a great weekend, and neither of us had any complaints.

      This spring my friend has agreed to once again let Rachel and I try to fill some turkey tags on the cattle ranch where he hunts. The following week, I’m bringing a different hunting partner of mine to our property so he can try to take his first bird with a shotgun. I’m definitely looking forward to spring turkey season again this year, even if I’ll mostly be calling for other people. Maybe I’ll bring a camcorder along just for fun.

    • SteveMcD
      Member
      Post count: 870

      May 1st here. But too many trout & salmon to catch by then! 8) Besides, warm fall hunting season, warm winter… going to be a banner year ticks, chiggers and all kinds of creepy crawlers! 🙄

    • tailfeather
      Post count: 417

      Less than two weeks away from a weekend hunt in north Florida, and less than three weeks away from my sweet Ga season. I’m useless and worthless by now….have been for a few weeks. I love turkey hunting above any other hunt (he hatched from an egg, says me wife!).:D

    • rwbowman
      Post count: 119

      I’m strongly considering getting a pair of tags to see if I can send a feathered shaft after a gobbler! I’ve never hunted turkey before and am sure I’ll be on my own, but I’ve been in the woods where I deer hunted this season and have seen a few flocks moving around. It’s exciting enough to get me going! Hope everyone has an enjoyable spring season.

    • Raymond Coffman
      Moderator
      Post count: 1072

      still have over a month to go here in NM [Ap15]

      starting to get all my gear tuned[ Archery tackle & calls ]probably take my little Shrew 49# 52″ bow.

      I always enjoy Spring turkey – great time to be in the Mtns!

      Not to HighJake Dave’s post {but it is about turkey hunting}?

      I was wondering what Dave and other members used as a BH for turkey?

      I have WWs 3 blade on currently, thinking more chance of cutting something vital on the Small tgt a turkey makes?

      Scout.

    • David Petersen
      Member
      Member
      Post count: 2749

      Steve — Does anyone kill turkeys with a season starting that late? Hens are already nesting before that, and it seems almost pointless to hold a season that late???

      Scout — I too have always subscribed to the “bigger is better” theory for turkey heads and used huge 3-blades. But that didn’t keep ’em from blowing through and too many hit birds escaping. This year, after seeing enough big game animals’ internal soft tissues homogenized by a single-bevel screwing its way through, that’s what I plan to use. But frankly, in the case of turkeys, assuming a very sharp broadhead, arrow placement is everything since penetration is rarely a problem and the vitals are so small. For me, turkey hunting is more a rite of spring than a serious hunt. Of course I work my tail off, lose sleep, etc., but whether or not I kill a bird is way down the list behind getting back up the mountain as the snow goes out to see what went on during winter, searching for drop tines, morels and remains of winterkilled elk, watching for the first bear sign, seeing pairs of Canada geese doing their daylight ritual honking circles, gradual green-up, the cacophony of shafted flickers … all great, important, soul-renewing stuff I’d miss if not for the wild turkey chase. Since it’s a vocal hunt, it’s also the next best thing to elk for fun. Now, if I can just get the damaged shoulder back online in time.

    • Raymond Coffman
      Moderator
      Post count: 1072

      Yes – Dave, what you said!

      Beautifully described, I mostly go for the same reasons. I have yet to take a turkey with my bow [ taken quite a few w/everything else] so it is quite the challenge and therein lies the fun. I have been thinking similar thoughts in just working up an efoc arrow for the lil shrew {49#} w’single bevel to keep it simple, consistent and one traj again. Mostly because they fly so well out of my other bows [accuracy]

      Thanks – good luck with the shoulder!

      Scout

    • Ralph
      Moderator
      Post count: 2554

      Nothin’ like sneaking around in the mesquites trying to get on those guys. They’re way sharper than I am sneaky but I’ve lucked out a couple of times doin’ spot and stalk.

      An excellent source of frustration and definitely many lessons in humility. Love it though.

    • Ed Ashby
      Member
      Post count: 816
    • Ralph
      Moderator
      Post count: 2554

      Y’all know that if I’d been carrying my bow this would not have come about!!!

    • Jason Wesbrock
      Member
      Post count: 762

      R2,

      I feel your pain. I used to refer to fall turkey tags as insurance policies that birds would never get in the way of my deer hunting. I was actually after a HUGE tom on my property this year. On the videos I have of him he was kicking his beard while he walked.

      I only ever saw him once while I was hunting this fall. He flew down with a big flock of toms, jakes, and hens. But when they hit the ground, he and the other males split from the flock, ending up in front of another treestand 80 yards south of me. The hens came in my direction. Bird in the hand and all, the lead hen is now in my freezer.

      The tom? I found what I assume are his tracks a few weeks ago in less than an inch of fresh snow. His beard left drag marks down the center. I’d really like to put an arrow through that bird, but then I wouldn’t have the fun of hunting him anymore. I suppose I’d eventually get over it though. 😉

    • Hiram
      Post count: 484

      Good stuff Gents! Now I’m thinking Turkey,,,thanks to you guys:D

    • jmack130
      Post count: 12

      me and my new 48 super mag have a date with thoes sharp eyed fellas here in ky gotta wait till april killen me lol:

    • SteveMcD
      Member
      Post count: 870

      Dave.. here in New York.. Yes. They actually do very well Turkey Hunting in the Spring. Males are Males no matter what the species, always ready, willing and able to breed, whether it’s mating season or not. But, in New York and PA that is the whole point, Get the hens off the nest with the first brood of the year first.

      Being a die hard fly fisher as well. MAY is a prime month for trout fishing. If I kill a turkey it will be incidentally in the fall, which I have done several times.

    • Bruce Smithhammer
      Post count: 2514

      YES!! In addition to a general spring turkey tag, I put in for our local controlled hunt as well. I got it last year, so I figured I had a snowball’s chance in heck of getting it again this year. And then I went to get the mail today and found this:

      Two years in a row. I know folks who’ve put in for this tag for 5+ years and never pulled it. What am I doing wasting my time hunting turkeys? I should be playing the lottery!!

    • David Petersen
      Member
      Member
      Post count: 2749

      Hammer — You obviously are cheating! 😕 (Can you please tell me how you do it so I can try it here in CO?) 😛

    • Bruce Smithhammer
      Post count: 2514

      Now, now, I wouldn’t exactly call it, “cheating.” I simply rigged the system by applying under every pseudonym and false social security number I could think of, and hacked into the F&G mainframe via an offshore server and eliminated all the other applications. But I take offense at the suggestion that I would actually “cheat” to get this tag. 😉

      [/joke]

    • Clay Hayes
      Member
      Post count: 418

      What unit is your tag for? I hunted the river bottom down river from Twin Bridges off the SF a few years ago. Lot’s of birds, and not too many hunters if you walk away from the road a little ways.

      Up here in north Idaho, we’ve got birds comming out our ears. Last year I probably called in 25 plus toms. I was having so much fun calling and filming that I never even took my bow along. Just followed my partner around with a video camera. Got some good footage, but no good shots. This year, we’ll rethink our run and gun stratagy. Probably have to consider a brushblind or something if we’re actually going to get a shot on film. Could have killed a mound of birds with a shotgun, but then, what fun would that be..

    • Bruce Smithhammer
      Post count: 2514

      Unit 9006, which encompasses a pretty huge area, from the Montana border down past the South Fork and way out past IF. They only issue 125 tags for that whole area. Needless to say, I don’t tend to see many other turkey hunters.

      I’ve always heard that the north, and out toward Lewiston area, has a ton of birds. One of these years I need to make the trek over there.

      Looking forward to more of your videos, Clay. Especially a spring gobbler vid!

    • wildschwein
      Post count: 581

      Well no Turkey season for me. But Bear season begins on the first of April. Gonna purchase my two tags and spend about 40 days chasing em this Spring. Just hope the Bears cooperate.

    • mikelee
      Post count: 86

      Well. If you run out of bears in Alberta you can always wander over to B.C . We always seem to have too many of those black critters .

    • Charles Ek
      Moderator
      Post count: 563

      Saw a big gobbler strutting and displaying to a group of hens yesterday in the summer-like heat. It would be interesting to know whether an early spring can advance the breeding cycle in the hens. We have no snow left and these birds were looking very healthy.

    • wildschwein
      Post count: 581

      Well I am not sure about early breeding for Turkey’s, but I have seen two cock Spruce Grouse in full strut within the last month. Don’t ever remember seeing them behaving that way in March but then we have never had a Winter as mild as this one.

    • wapiti792
      Post count: 20

      Things are hot and heavy here in IL with our season opening in 3 weeks. I witnessed a flock of 50 birds in my driveway sorting things out while I was working on my barn…8 toms aready strutting for the ladies and 12 jakes fighting amoungst themselves for the right to walk behind the toms near the ladies. Should be a good spring as my 40 acres of woods are the roost trees for half the flock in the section.

      I am heading to Florida in 9 days to take my family on a vacation…with the boss lady giving me the thumbs up I get to chase Osceolas for 3 days of our 8 day trip. I am using a heavy doug fir arrow and a really wide 200 gr Ace 2-blade. I am a turkey nut as they are the closet elk-actin’ animal here in the midwest. Can’t wait!!!

    • WICanner
      Post count: 136

      Eeennie, Meenie, Miney, Moe . . .

      Can’t wait for April 11th . . .

      The blinds are going up this weekend ! ! ! 😀

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    • Wexbow
      Post count: 403

      Looks like wapiti and canner are going to be busy. Enjoy it guys 😀

    • Hiram
      Post count: 484
    • rwbowman
      Post count: 119

      A buddy and I found a couple of flocks within a couple of hundred yards of each other yesterday while out building ground blinds for this years whitetail season. I took the time to carve a nice little nich out under a big 1/2 dead cedar overlooking a small clearing. Archery turkey opens next Sunday and I hope to be there before anyone else! Lord willing…..

    • Todd Smith
      Post count: 167

      Starts April 25th here and I have been drawn for the Pigeon River area for April 25-27. I need to get out and do some scouting. Was out there a couple of weeks back, but in the middle of the day.

      Time for some early mornings… 😉

      Looking forward to it… todd

    • Greg Ragan
      Member
      Post count: 201

      Warm weather has us all greened up and mosquito and ticked up here already in MD. The season will be challenging but I can’t wait! I have heard reports of hens already on eggs.

      Be chasing them with a Hill and ghillie suit!

    • Jason Wesbrock
      Member
      Post count: 762

      It’s much the same on our Wisconsin property. The ticks and mosquitoes are heavy, and the gobblers are extremely active. Hopefully they’re still going strong by the first week in May.

    • rwbowman
      Post count: 119

      Man, I’m afraid you may not know ticks until you venture into the woods here in Kansas, at least over the past few weeks. I think we’re on a mission to start raising and selling ticks!

      On the topic of Tom Gobblers, I’ve spent two days in the woods since the season opened Sunday past and have seen quite a few birds, but have only laid eyes on one Tom. I’ve heard a lot of gobbling and continue to be patient. Running back out this evening after work to see if we can intercept a few birds with the decoys and a blind. Wish me luck as I continue the search for my first Bow harvest!

      Has anyone been able to bag a turkey yet? I’d care to see your pictures!!

    • rwbowman
      Post count: 119

      So we went out and were unable to connect, not for lack of birds, but more for lack of interested birds. As soon as we pulled up there was a flock in the field we’ve dubbed the ‘favorite’ of the birds. One big full strut Tom, a couple of Jakes and a host of hens along for the show. Going to stay after them and possibly pass on the blind over the next few outings. Hoping to stalk/intercept on the treelines. We found out which direction the roost is from there, now it’s all about getting in close and staying in place. (Fingers Crossed with an arrow nocked)

    • strait-aero
      Post count: 350

      Ours doesn’t open until two week from Monday, the 23rd…..spring’s come early and I’m not sure how this will affect the birds here. It’s greening up quick here in eastern Ohio. Wayne 😕

    • Don Thomas
      Member
      Post count: 334

      One week away here, and then I’ve got about 48 hours to get ‘er done before leaving for Alaska. We woke up to nearly two feet of fresh snow yesterday, and i hope it’s gone soon. I got snowed out of my favorite turkey spots last year. Gobble, gobble, Don

    • Jason Wesbrock
      Member
      Post count: 762

      I was up at our property yesterday and today doing some work and scouting for turkey season. While I found quite a bit of fresh sign, what I saw on the way home was even more interesting. I had to stop about a quarter mile from our place for a tom in full strut in the middle of the blacktop and a hen on the shoulder. I figured natural selection would have removed such a bird from the gene pool long before he reached maturity.

    • David Petersen
      Member
      Member
      Post count: 2749

      Finally saw a local turkey, about an hour ago and less than 300 yards from the cabin: a lone turkey. It’s a modest start but a start nonetheless. Onward then, into the fog …

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    • doug krueger
      Post count: 55

      Dave,

      I take it you have been scouting and haven’t seen much. I figured this would be a great season for turkey, with the mild winter and all. Last weekend I scouted a new spot and there were birds in there. I got a hen to talk back but that was it, I didnt push the calling but I saw sign. I have heard some gobbling on the rez while working.

      Dk

    • Charles Ek
      Moderator
      Post count: 563

      2012 SPRING GOBBLER SEASON LOOKS GOOD FOR N.H. TURKEY HUNTERS

      CONCORD, N.H. — It should be a good spring season for New Hampshire’s turkey hunters, says New Hampshire Fish and Game Department Turkey Biologist Ted Walski. The spring gobbler season opens Thursday, May 3, and runs through Thursday, May 31, statewide. New Hampshire’s Youth Turkey Hunt Weekend occurs the weekend before the season opens, this year taking place on Saturday, April 28, and Sunday, April 29.

      Both turkeys and deer are “happy campers” in much of the state, after enjoying one of the mildest winters in recent memory. Except for an unusual October snowstorm, there was little meaningful snowfall. The fall mast crop was good, providing an abundance of acorns, beechnuts, apples, white ash seeds and various other seeds and fruits. Turkeys were displaying and gobbling to some degree almost all winter, Walski says. With good mobility and easy access to natural foods, turkeys tended to stay in smaller family groups during the winter months, rather than congregating in large flocks at farms and birdfeeders.

      Walski predicts a reasonably good turkey harvest this spring, in the range of 4,000 gobblers. He reports that numerous groups of turkeys have been observed throughout their range in the state. During the 2011 spring gobbler season, New Hampshire hunters harvested a total of 3,672 turkeys.

      Hunters should be sure to get out and do some scouting this spring, says Walski. The hot weather we experienced in March inspired turkeys to early thoughts of romance. Walski reports seeing quite a bit of displaying and gobbling. “I would expect earlier than normal nesting and hatching out of turkeys, grouse, woodcock and even rabbits this year,” said Walski. “This may benefit turkey hunters because more hens will be incubating and out of circulation when the regular season starts on May 3. With fewer live hens to capture the toms’ attention, they may be more interested in answering hunters’ calls.”

      Walski also recommends driving some early morning “gobbling routes” before the season begins. Start about a half-hour before daybreak. Stop at one-half to one-mile intervals along a 5- to 10-mile route in the region you intend to hunt; get out of the vehicle and listen for gobbling turkeys and drumming grouse for four minutes at each stop.”

    • Todd Smith
      Post count: 167

      I was drawn for state ground, a three-day slot.

      Day 1: Heard lots of toms but none close and none came in to set-up.

      Day 2: Had seen a hen fly off roost the week before in this spot and heard at least three different toms. The morning I set up the blind there, nothing. Never even heard a gobble that day.

      Day 3: Had hunted this area before, but had not gone in this deep this season yet. Set up the blind, and as I was setting up the decoys, a bird actually flew from one tree to another. I was too close… There was one tom in there and he was pretty vocal. Eventually he worked around the blind – but just would not come in.

      I was in a DB T-2 with a Great Northern “Lil’ Creep”. I was soooooo wanting to connect with that bow. It’s perfect in a blind, 58″. Smooth as silk and very stable for such a short bow.

      Now it’s back to work and a vacation starting Saturday so my turkey season is pretty much over.

      Think I need to scout even more and see about finding travel routes.

      Then again I get drawn here about every five years… 😥

      Have a great season all.

      todd

    • strait-aero
      Post count: 350

      Just got back from vacation with the family to the Great Smoky Mtns National Park in Tennesee.No hunting for me and my son, but we did see a ton of longbeards in some beautiful mountain country. We’re plannin’ a trip for bear there in the near future…..

      Nothing yet in my season.:cry: Wayne

    • Bruce Smithhammer
      Post count: 2514

      Gobblers have been a bust around here. Unseasonably hot and dry, and the place we went this past weekend (where we got into a bunch of them last year) was over-run with an endless parade of ORVs. Talking with other locals it seems like few people have had any luck this year so far.

      Anyone else ever get tempted to send an arrow through one of your decoys, when you’ve been staring at it for hours without hearing a gobble?

    • rwbowman
      Post count: 119

      Been very tempted to send one through my hen decoy hammer! Even thought about filling her with great stuff foam and using as a target, but she ‘talked’ a big bird in for me to miss a few weeks ago, so she lives for now.

    • Raymond Coffman
      Moderator
      Post count: 1072

      Smithhammer –

      In Southern NM [ Gila ] had a record warm March [entire month]

      birds went early. all I saw were single nesting hens, and very few*, in an area in the past, that had large nos of turkeys. Heard 1 gobbler -never actually saw him. a lot of competition in the woods, a lot of run n gunners on 4wds.I kind of expected it – I was working in TX and the birds started earlier than usual there also. In fact a friend sent a game camera pix showing poults following a hen opening week for NM -[tx a lil further south but similiar].

      But had a wonderfull time in the Mtns – good water – everything greening up. beautifull weather, saw Elk N deer —–

      Scout

      * according to local reports the hatch last yr was decimated by a late cold/wet spell.

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