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May 1st called for amazing weather and Sondra and I had planned a day of turkey hunting. We visited a new area and after a quick hike we were overlooking a vast area of turkey country that was beautiful and just what turkey hunting habitat is all about! The ridge we were on overlooked a river bottom that was filled with ideal turkey habitat which included crop fields, dense thickets, tall cottonwoods and open meadows. The use of the onXmap’s software helped me determine the landowner’s boundaries and in a short time we had asked permission to hunt and were granted access. The deer hunting in this area is amazing but quite harder to get permission for. Turkey and coyote hunting usually comes pretty easy!
After doing various locator calls we were finally answered back by a distant gobble below us and on the other side of the river. The software again confirmed that the other side was owned by another landowner. After a long drive we were standing on the steps of an old farmhouse and greeted by an Ol’ Timer that I don’t think gets much company! He was a great man who again granted us permission to hunt his ground! He left us with these words, “Good luck getting one with a bow, I have never seen that done before! You are braver than I!”
After studying the map we put together a plan to set up on a field edge that the gobbler was likely to head to in the evening. The lush alfalfa harbors many bugs and is a favored feeding location for turkeys; a great location for them to feed just before heading to roost. There was a small group of trees at the field edge that stuck out a bit on a bend in the terrain which allowed us to hide the blind perfectly. The decoys were place 14 yards out with an Avian-X Jake standing over a Lay Down Hen. A short distance away from them I placed a Feeding Hen and a Lookout Hen to add even more realism in hopes this would bring a gobbler in to investigate. Up until now the gobblers had been henned up but most hens now sat on their nests and the gobblers had become lonely.
You know when you have a setup that is perfect and you just know you are going to kill an animal? That is exactly how this was; I just had the feeling that everything was going to work out perfectly to take home another gobbler!
I threw out another locator call after getting setup and had that same bird answer back a couple hundred yards away it sounded. I answered back to him with some yelps to let him know there was a lonely hen looking for his acquaintance! Within an hour 4 hens came into the field and worked their way to our decoys. When you can get live decoys to help out it even is more of a perfect setup!
I called about every 20 minutes and each time the gobbler answered back making it quite obvious that he was on his way! It wasn’t another 45 minutes and before we knew it he walked right next to the blind in full strut and headed straight toward the jake decoy very aggressive wanting to kick some feathers in!
He began to assault my decoys just as my Easton Injexion found its mark! He ran another 20 yards before going down! There was at least 20 deer in the field at this time, the sun had dipped low on the horizon and we had a big bird down for the count!
When you know everything is perfect, it often is! I felt it in every aspect on this hunt!