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Taxidermy.Net Forum  |  Taxidermy Discussion Categories  |  Bird Taxidermy  |  Topic: Spring 2012 - Turkey hunting photos/stories « previous next »
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Author Topic: Spring 2012 - Turkey hunting photos/stories  (Read 7988 times)
bucksnort10
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Posts: 673


« on: April 08, 2012, 05:47:04 PM »

Thought I would start a thread for the turkey hunters out there.

I had the awesome opportunity to take part in a Learn-To-Hunt program for young turkey hunters.  In Wisconsin the program is for 10-16 year-old, first-time hunters.  The hunters can only be in the program one time.  The group I was in was based out of Pulaski and had 55 youths with 59 mentors.  It is one of the largest programs of its kind in the state.  So far as of Saturday morning, the kids had harvested over 30 birds.  As a sidenote, the state's average for the regular season is somewhere around 25-26%.  The earlier season is a little easier as there are "green" birds but is tougher as a lot of the kids it is the 1st time they have hunted.   Some of them have only shot a gun 1 or 2 times.  When coupled with some dedicated people that have a passion for hunting, the success rate is better.  Also there were around 12 girls hunting.  I know of at least 2 of them that got birds.

I was paired up with a 13-year old boy whose parents did not hunt.  His Dad hunted deer in the past but hadn't gone for several years as public hunting land is limited and landowners are very protective of "their" deer.  My youth had an awesome attitude. He wanted to get a turkey so bad.  He made a great partner, even carried the decoy bag along with his gear.  And he kept up with my long legs.  :)  My youth's first name coincidentally was "Jake".

This morning he harvested a 18 pound bird, 10 " beard, and 3/4" spurs.  He was pumped.  Thirty minutes earlier he missed a 20-yard shot at a bigger bird.  He had a little case of "buck" fever on that one.  I had to take his safety off after telling him about 3 times  "take the safety off".  Then when it came time to shoot, I had to say "you need to shoot" at least 6 times before he finally pulled the trigger. One can only imagine where the bead was on that one.  He missed cleanly as the bird just walked away into the words.  Luckily we had another pair come in and he sealed the deal. 

If you ever get the opportunity to take a kid hunting (or fishing) do it.  The memories will last a lifetime.


* Jake and Dan turkey 4-8-12.jpg (126.06 kB, 832x906 - viewed 1298 times.)
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If you have to be crazy to be a duck hunter, I don't wish to be sane - Robert Ruark.
minehill
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Location: Missouri
Posts: 245


« Reply #1 on: April 08, 2012, 06:25:34 PM »

This is my younger cousin I took on the Missouri youth hunt. Normal season don't open till the 16th so I haven't had the opportunity to go yet...19 lbs 10" and a 5" beards...and 3/4 inch spurs..always have good success with strutting decoys. Pulls em right in.




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wolfgang
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Posts: 690


« Reply #2 on: April 08, 2012, 08:02:08 PM »

bucksnort
Where do I get info on the program you spoke of? I would be interested in taking out a youngster next year. My kids are all grown up now and I remember the days of my sons first hunts.
I am taking out the wife this year for her first hunt ever, we both got drawn this coming week.
Thanks!
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bucksnort10
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Posts: 673


« Reply #3 on: April 08, 2012, 08:47:16 PM »

bucksnort
Where do I get info on the program you spoke of? I would be interested in taking out a youngster next year. My kids are all grown up now and I remember the days of my sons first hunts.
I am taking out the wife this year for her first hunt ever, we both got drawn this coming week.
Thanks!

probably the easiest way would be to contact your local DNR warden
or DNR office

good luck on your hunts!   I have hunt Wednesday too.
Dan
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If you have to be crazy to be a duck hunter, I don't wish to be sane - Robert Ruark.
schenk
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Posts: 567

« Reply #4 on: April 10, 2012, 09:32:32 AM »

There is our kill from saturday, Heath had a blast. 10" beard, 18#'s and spurs were around 1 1/8".

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Pete-pec
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Location: Southern Wisconsin
Posts: 314


« Reply #5 on: April 11, 2012, 11:04:46 AM »

My buddy and I got out for the first day of Wisconsin's first season. We doubled pretty early in the morning. It was bittersweet. I never even had time to get schooled by those birds. This plan came together as if we wrote the script. We had to alternate as photographers, so we are holding both birds even though we each only shot one.
« Last Edit: March 04, 2014, 07:46:20 PM by Pete-pec » Logged
bucksnort10
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Posts: 673


« Reply #6 on: April 11, 2012, 12:35:37 PM »

my hunting partner's bird from this morning
21 pounds
9 inch beard

We were hunting on opposite ends of a 40 acre woodlot.  Tracy was sneaking out of the woods around 9:00 to head back to work and came across a hen which was being cornered by this Tom.  One shot and he was down.  Interestingly the hen took flight and flew to the other end of the woods and landed right in my decoys.  It then quickly ran off to the north.
I saw 7 other birds this a.m.  Had 2 jakes in the decoys about 15 yards from the blind.  No Toms yet for me. Oh well, guess I get to hunt again tomorrow.  Darn!  :) :)

Congratulations to the rest of the hunters.


* Tracy 4-11-12 turkey.JPG (123.08 kB, 1600x1200 - viewed 944 times.)
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If you have to be crazy to be a duck hunter, I don't wish to be sane - Robert Ruark.
Bucknut
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Location: Rushford, Minnesota
Posts: 4646


176 5/8

« Reply #7 on: April 11, 2012, 12:40:48 PM »

Nice Birds everyone! Pete-Pec, I have two 6th period tags for WI. I suspect it is going to be a tough hunt with the early spring.

Bruce
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I got a couple of 170's - now I want a 190!
Pete-pec
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Location: Southern Wisconsin
Posts: 314


« Reply #8 on: April 11, 2012, 08:40:16 PM »

I think the birds will be the same, maybe even more eager? The hens should have nests (instead of laying, they should be sitting) or better yet, poults. Those eager two year olds will be waiting for that beautiful love music from your diaphragm call. I have fifth and sixth season as well, and I think it should be easy to call the toms in, because the hens will be occupied being mothers. There is a problem with vegetation though. It's pretty green already, and they will be sneaking in quiet, and unseen. 

I'm planning on focusing on those strutting zones that are within the woods, such as old logging roads and trails. In years past, I've seen more single toms out in the fields, and that seems to be when the season is well over. I would think that this warm spell has the birds 3 to four weeks ahead, so you have to think how they are AFTER the season has ended.
« Last Edit: April 11, 2012, 08:51:51 PM by Pete-pec » Logged
bucksnort10
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Posts: 673


« Reply #9 on: April 14, 2012, 12:32:26 PM »

Finally got one this morning.   A lightweight, 17 pounds with a 9" beard and 3/4 and 1" spurs.  There was one other gobbler with this one.  Plus saw a pair of jakes this morning too. 


* On ground 4-14-12 DJB.jpg (124.01 kB, 1392x1044 - viewed 863 times.)
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If you have to be crazy to be a duck hunter, I don't wish to be sane - Robert Ruark.
teddybaham
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Location: Ponchatoula, LA
Posts: 91


I,m the nube!!!!

WWW
« Reply #10 on: April 14, 2012, 10:08:07 PM »

posted this story on a site i moderate so dont let names or stuff confuse you.
i made a hunt with some freinds in mertzon texas and hammered 11 rios in 3 days with 5 people it was great. a good freind of mine Wayne Kendrick invited me.
opening morning i go go blindly to an area recomended by wayne. on the 4 sqaure mile ranch theres a high fence area with exotics and thats where i started. as the skies turn grey i hear some gobbles very far off and im concerned the area i was sent to was gonna be a bust. i start hiking toward the sound of the closest one (400 500 yards at the least) and walk about 60 yards and drop off into a pasture. as i round the corner i come face to face with a herd of Oryx. as i face off with them i realize its light enough to call and see if theres a bird close. i fire off with the diaphram and a few hens answer back in some live oaks 50 yard to my right. after the third call a gobbler answers about 200 yards to the left. concerned that if i walk any further into the open ill be busted by the hens i decide to place a decoy on the edge of the road and back out 10 yards (a little close) to the only suitable spot with a good line of sight. i found a small cedar tree to back up against, after checking it for rattlers i settled in, put my gun on my trigger stick and called again. the gobble seemed closer and through a bush immediatly to my right i was using to hide from the hens, i could see them trotting in my direction. already aiming in the direction of my decoy the birds made their way past the bush and were now just a few steps from the barrel of my gun. the boss hen ran up and bristled up to my decoy showing her dominace clucking and fussing. the other two started putting and got nerveous and flew off. well with all the racket the hens were makin the gobbler was headed in my diection and the boss hen stayed 3 feet from the decoy insuring she didnt have a chance with her gobbler. she sat there looked around, pecked at rocks, and eventually after 10 minutes or so stated walking in the direction of her man. after she dissappeared behind a bush 20 yards away i started to call again. he answerd twice then all went silent. i was afraid he had come onto the road and the hen had brought him the other way. after 10 more minutes of sitting perfectly still i decided the chance on the gobbler was over and slowly let my gun down to let the blood flow back into my arm. as i did my head came up and a small branch in th ebush to my right had been blocking my view. i saw the gobbler standing in the clearing through the bush to the right 65 yards out. he was headed my way 3 steps at a time just a spittin a puffin and puttin on a good show. but now my heart was poundin, he was headed my but my gun was down, i feel wide open and theres no way to point the gun his way ill have to wait for him to come past the bush to the right. after sizing up the bush i figured i had nough cover to slowly raise the stock back to my shoulder over about 60 seconds and lowering my head back on the sights the birds gettin closer and i can see him out the corner of my eye. still aiming my gun toward the decoy infront of me im anticipating the gobbler to come to the decoy. as he gets to 25 yards still behind the bush i notice the hen pop out out behind the bush by the decoy. now i really caint move becuse theres just air between us at 10 steps. the gobbler finally moves into 17 steps and clears the bush to the right. now hes headed to the decoy but is about to pass behind the bush where the hen may have never left, i swung the gun a foot to my right on the gobblers head, he stopped a sec and looked at with a slight confused then oh $#!t look on his face. then BLAM he went to floppin, i jumped up not knowing my leg from below the knee down hadnt had any blood for 20 minutes so i hobbled on one leg to him and stepped on his head till he gave up. one of the most exciting moments of my life, i was truley pumped !!!!
he weighed 22.5lbs, 9" beard 1 1/16" and 1" spurs.













at 10am i went back out and located another gobbler but he was hung up with a hen so after 15 min they were tired of talking so i backed out. i met the guys wayne invited from lafayette back on the road and they said they hadnt seen or heard a thing. considering them to be our guests i tried putting them on this bird but he wasnt havin any of it he'd gobble a while then silence. so we went back for lunch. after lunch went seperated, those two went back to where that bird was and killed him and i went to another area and didnt hear a thing. so by 2 i was back at the camp napping. the owner says theres a gobbler comes to the lodge daily to feed at the feeder, if i see him ill wake u up. so i said ok. i was bored so i took a box call and went out by the feeder and called a while, then came in a layed on the couch to nap. 20 min later here he come, so i got my gun out the truck and snuck around the lodge to get a shot. i belly crawled to about 50 yards and got behind a bush the bird had started to move away but i called him back to about 60 yards but wasnt comin any closer to the lodge. then he left out. so came in and plopped on the couch. the owner said im not sure but i believe he must be goin to a pasture about 1/2 mile from here how bout we drop you off and try to head him off, well i wasnt doin nothin so i said sure. he had a guide don drop me off and said see you at dark or call me. so i walked 50 yards from the fence row into an opening 75x50 yards with a few cacti in it and put out my decoys at 25 yards. backed into a cedar tree after checking for rattlers. called twice and took my time getting gloves and mask on, got my gun on rest and and called a third time. i set the but of the gun in my lap and assuming he had a while to get there if he came so i wasnt trying to be sneaky, i glanced to my left and at the back of the opening in the brush line i see somthin move, a grey head, he held back checkin things out, then after a min out pops a gobbler. he makes his way to the decoys and i slowly get my gun up since im not exactly hidden, and aim towards the decoys well 10 yards out he comes right for me and the starts skirting to my left, he goes behind a bush at 12 steps and i swing left, he pops out the other side then BAM bird 2 19 lbs 9" beard 1" spurs. heres some pics from the lodge and the bird. now i had assumed i had killed another bird, but the elapsed time from dropping me off and killing the bird was about 10 min, and i thought there was no way he had made it that far. but after don (the ranch hand) emailed the pics from the lodge as i was stalking at the feeder im certian it was. i thought i blew part of the beard off but it was already broken as you can see in the pic under the feeder. so i slept in the next day hahha
 







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Gona mount it?
ABOVE CAMP
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Location: utah
Posts: 158


« Reply #11 on: April 15, 2012, 04:20:54 PM »

    Great pics guys,  This is my sons first turkey,not the biggest bird,but a true trophy,It was the only bird that we seen,but he strutted to 7 yds when he pulled the trigger.           
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Jordanlybeck
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Location: Enumclaw, Washington
Posts: 358


« Reply #12 on: April 15, 2012, 05:54:33 PM »

I had been watching a particular group of birds for a couple of weeks anticipating the day I could get after them. I had a week long internsip down in Twin Falls at the Idaho State FFA convention and got back late saturday night, so  didn't have time to roost anything.I arrived at my spot at 4:30 ad quickly made my way up the hill in the dark. I thought it would never get light and about 4:50 I made a couple of calls with no response. I decided to follow a old cattle trail to the next patch of trees. Just as I turned  to head that way I heard a gobble just behind me aout 200 yards across the canyon. quickly turned around and made my way to the top of the hill the bird gobbled again and I setup on the opposite side of the canyon from him but right in line with his roost. I set up my decoy and quickly sat up against a tree about 15 yards from the drop off of the canyon. I gave a few hen calls and within seconds had a response. This bird was gobbling at anything and everyting. I made calls every couple of minutes so he could really pinpoint my setup. At about 5:25 I heard what I thought was wing beats coming down out of the tree about 150 yards across the canyon.  a made a couple of putts and got loud muffled response that sounded like it was at the bottom of the canyon I made some excited clucks and got him to gobble this time even closer this kept up for another minute or so until when he would gobble I could hear the ruffling sound of his feathers. It was no more than a minute later he emerged from out behind a bush just at the edge of the drop off right in front of my decoy about 15 yards away. He took a few steps gobbled perked his head up and it was lights out! I was definatel happy to have him as my it turkey!I hope everyone else had a successful opener as well.




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bucksnort10
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Posts: 673


« Reply #13 on: April 15, 2012, 07:22:21 PM »

    Great pics guys,  This is my sons first turkey,not the biggest bird,but a true trophy,It was the only bird that we seen,but he strutted to 7 yds when he pulled the trigger.           
That is a really nice looking gobbler.  Congratulations to your son.
Also to Jordanlybeck and teddybaham -- I enjoyed reading your stories.   
Hunting in cactus looks so odd --- our densely wooded terrain probably looks out of place to you then too. ? We hunt again in 2 weeks. Yippee!
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If you have to be crazy to be a duck hunter, I don't wish to be sane - Robert Ruark.
Jason O
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Location: Wi
Posts: 2236

« Reply #14 on: April 16, 2012, 11:36:16 AM »

23lbs 1 inch hooks 9 3/4 beard  not my biggest bird but a nice one  . broke down and used the shotgun last nite after missing one with the bow . saw 75 birds in 5 days of hunting just could not close the deal .   i got 3 more tags so no more gun, bow only from now on. also got my buddy his first bird ever 24 lbs 10 beard 1 1/8 hooks .
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