Nope that's not a new sub-species of Turkeys, I just kept spelling Saturday as Saturkey, so it was almost fate that I had to kill one on a Saturday.
This hunt found my dad and I heading to the woods together for the second time this season. The birds didn’t work well at all the day before when we were hunting, mainly because of an unexpected thunderstorm, but we hoped today would be different.
We hit the woods right around 5:45 a.m. and to our dissatisfaction we never heard a bird as we made our way through the woods. Finally, as the sun started to lighten things up we heard a gobble, followed by a couple more. That was a relief, as I was beginning to think that the birds had moved or been shot at.
We picked out a spot to set up in, but the brush would hinder our shots to just a couple of lanes. A hen and jake decoy were placed about 15 yards out in the best lane and we sat down and prepared to call. I sat at a smaller tree just in front and to the left of my dad and because of this he had me turn around the tree more to left so he could have a better shot down the lane just in case he had to swing some. So yes, he would have the better shot now if the birds came in textbook like, but we all know how that works. He did tell me that if I had a shot to take it, just not to be jumping up after the shot just in case the other birds hung around.
Mouth call in, slates out and I was ready. The gobblers were not saying much at all while on roost. Finally coaxed a couple gobbles out of them and then a hen spoke up just down in the woods. I talked to her for a couple minutes, doing some fly downs and then she pitched down herself. Birds’ just started flying down from all over and then a gobble was let out and he too was on the ground, and closer. That first hen though came right into the decoys, she kinda eyed them up and stuck around looking. More hens just started pouring in through the woods, and then the red heads popped into view. Naturally they were the last ones to come and they were out there way beyond shotgun range. Three full fan strutters and countless hens.
The toms slowly made they’re way in, but not before the hens were mere yards away, I thought the jig was going to be up, but the hens weren’t spooked. I had quit calling at this point, fearing that we would surely be picked out then. My dad whispered over to call, so I gave them a few soft calls. Now I should mention that all the birds, with the exception of that one hen, have come up on our left side, the same side my dad needed me to scoot to so he could have a better shot. I’m almost perfectly set up to shoot, just need to slide the gun left a hair.
The Toms were on the approach and closed into 20-25 yards and they would come no closer. One strutter had a shorter beard, one had a slightly bushy beard and one had a nice bushy beard. I heard my dad whisper to take the shot, as he couldn’t get moved on them. They started to sense that something may not be right. I slowly moved my gun over to where the three Toms danced for they’re lady friends and just as I did I saw one of them pick his head up. Perfect. The safety was already off and I found his head right down my gun barrel, BOOM! He started flopping! Yes! I almost sprung up from my spot as I started to get my legs under me when I hunkered back down wondering if my dad would shoot. The hens had taken off at the shot and I didn’t see the other two Toms, but then I did as they started moving back down through the woods.
The shot would have been a tough one as they were out there a good distance now.
Made it over to my bird and he was pretty much expired. His Spurs weren’t much, but they’ll make a good necklace or something else. His beard was nice and bushy though, I thought it looked around 10 inches. Weight wise I would say 18-19 pounds. My guess’s were a little off though.
Beard – 9 ½
Spurs – ¾
Weight – 21Lbs
Not bad though! Him and his buds put on a super nice show and it was exciting having all those birds around like that! Just Awesome!
20 Gauge Mossberg 500 loaded with 3" Winchester No. 5's put him right down.
Only downside, I wasn't using Adam's call. They liked it, but when they got so close I switched to using the Mouth Call. Just couldn't chance the movement.
I'm Proof As To What Little Girls Are Made Of
**GUNPOWDER & LEAD**