Thursday, March 12, 2015

2015 Wild Turkey Season Opener - Game Zone Six

Afternoon sunshine baits the turkeys to scratch a little longer
Treating March 14 as a dress rehearsal would be the best bet to counter the calendar conundrum in 2015 of opening day for turkeys being a Sunday. Knock the rust off of your turkey hunting gear by toting it out into the woodlands, resting your back against a broad tree base, and listening for the songbird chatter as the day breaks in God’s church of the outdoors. Whether a longbeard blows your hat off with a thunderous gobble or not, you won’t regret spending this time in the woodlands.

If one encounters gobbling turkeys, I would then become a phantom. Use concealment as a weapon against their keen senses of vision and hearing. It would be a mistake to tip off mature gobblers to your presence, but a patient hunter knows how to blend in until the turkeys have moved on. Wild turkeys are very ambulatory in spring so the odds are that they won’t camp out near your position for long. After all, a turkey hunter needs to know both how to enter and how to exit the woods, especially when carrying a shotgun loaded with copper-plated number 5’s.

There they go again
If one has the time and inclination to hunt on Sunday March 15, use the evening before to try and roost some turkeys. Roosting a gobbler is preferable, but even putting a few hens to bed would be a positive sign. Scouting the day before, plus roosting a tom, equates to the best chance for success the next morning. Consult maps overnight to plan the best spot to set up and call, and to recognize where the turkeys might go should they decide to pass on your offerings.

If the turkeys leave you that is by no means the end of your hunt. Rather it a signal that this endeavor might take a bit of time, and that a measure of woodsmanship needs to be mustered in order to move through the woodlands and get back in front of any traveling toms. This task is easier if the boss gobbler will answer locator calls along the way, or is gobbling freely. If the gobbler hushes, then the hunt becomes much harder and any subsequent harvest would be hard earned.

Between the disciplines of scouting, roosting and hunting wild turkeys there are a multitude of scenarios that may develop to test one’s dedication. These derivations are what drives most hunters to return again and again in search for the big game of springtime, when the majesty of green up returns to the landscape, and the strutting monarch arrives right on cue to rule over his domain.

To read the entire article in the newspaper click on Charleston Mercury.

To view past blog entries about the 2015 turkey season click here.

To view past blog entries on turkey hunting click 2014 Opening Day - Grand Slam - Mark Prudhomme - Eddie Salter - Tony Chachere - 2013- 2012 H.S. Strut - 2009

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