The alarm clock went off at 4:00 AM like a shotgun blast in my ear. I jumped out of bed and got dressed and I was off to pick up Dave my camera man. 1st we went to a bow only farm and back out to the ridge. Shortly after setting up the sky started showing some pink light coming over the horizen and a gobble gobble from 40 yards away caught me by surprize. :shock: The dang bird was roosted right next to us. Well, we were able to keep ourselves hidden from him till he flew down. So I called to him once he was down strutting and he was very nice about answering me... As he walked the other direction. After he left we spent a short time searching the farm for more gobblers with no luck.
So we packed up the bow and took off in the truck to look for more turkeys on the other farms. We went pass the 1st couple farms without seeing nothing but a Jake.
Then when we went past Daves farm there was a very large bird trying to cross the road to leave Daves farm. So I parked the truck in a manner that would encourage the Tom to turn around and stay on Daves farm. However, it spooked him so bad he ran all the way across and onto another farm. We could of tryed to call him back, but I was quite confident we spooked him to badly. So, off we went to the next farm to look for the bird we tryed to pull away from three hens the privius day (day #4).
We get to the next farm and there's the bird from the morning before with his three hens in exactly the same spot. I looked at Dave and said, you know this is in vane, but we have to give it a try. We just are not seeing enough birds to pass on a try. So, we watch the birds for awhile to determine where they are headed, but they just stay in the same area. We go park the truck between two woodlots out of site of Tommy boy, and start the long stalk.
Since I had already called this bird once without results, I grabbed a different call. My old faithfull I had called every bird I had ever shot with. My new one stayed in the truck.
I beleive if a bird has heard you call and figured it out to be a trap, he will recognize that calls tone if you try it again with the same call. Maybe Im nuts, but thats what I think.
I also don't like calling from the same position where I was once busted by the bird Im after so I spent considerable time slithering and crawling to a position closer to the bird.
when the woods got very open and it would of been easy for a turkey to see us, we used a large stump to crawl inline with blocking the birds veiw. as we neared the stump the birds started working the other way as expected.
So now I was not only going to try to call a Tom away from 3 hens, but also in a direction he was not headed. Odd's were not looking good. To make matters worse, just as I got into position, all the hens started walking into a woods on the neighbors property.
I moved as fast as I could without giveing my position away. I got my call out as I rolled to the edge of the woods and feild and called from 80 yards away with a freindly Yelp..Yelp.. Just as he was entering the woods. He spun around and hammered out 2 loud gobbles and staired down in my direction. He puffed up all his feathers and started putting on a good show but kept looking back for his hens. Every time he would look back, I would give him a yelp again. Finally he started heading in my direction, but very slowly.
There was one more problem. There was a road with a deep ditch dividing the two propertys. I would have to sound so much like a horny hen that he would do what turkeys just don't do... Cross a barrier. But I had seen it before, even earlyer this week when I called one across a bridge but gave up before he crossed. This time, I would stick with it.
He dissapeared into the ditch. I waited and waited. Then suddenly he came scurring across the road. I thought, what is going to go wrong? It almost seemed like the bird would actually come into my set up for sure, now that he crossed the road. He had came the whole way takeing his sweet time and coming on an angle leaving him still just a little out of range. He stayed strutting the whole time, closer... closer...
Here he is just after crossing the road (The road is where the high grass divides the feilds)
Finnaly he is within 40 yards and very killable, however he has swung a little behind me and I can't get my shotgun against my shoulder. I decided to shoot when he got back in front of me.
Dave wispers a little bit to loud... Dan, psssst, Dan... The camera is flashing OUT OF TAPE!! I didn't even try to whisper as Tommy boy's head shot up and gave the old eye popping stair, " Dave, is the red light still in the screen?? ( the red light indicates it is still recording the last of the tape) Yes, says Dave. BOOOOOM. One dead turkey .
I go out pick up the dead bird and before I can even start my victory dance, Dave says, the light just went out.
2 SECONDS BEFORE IMPACT...
HOOOP.. There it is
20 1/2 pounds... 10 inch beard... 1 1/8 spurs... (Dave is the Dude on the left )