We have had an 870 wingmaster in the familt for almost 30 yrs. Its USED every year and hasn't given one problem. Awsome gun. You can get a Hastings riffled barrel for it. I think you can buy it on the internet for around $180.(3 years ago)
to get a good old wingmaster, look under side of gun, if the receiver where you load you shells in is shiney, thats an older one, and if at all possible, get the magnum receiver, and i picked up a parkerized smoothbore deer bbl at gun show for 90 bucks,
that is something I learned off my dad, and i'm not knocking the new 870's, but we love the beauty of the older 870's
Cabelas has got slug barrels for that under 200. I've got an 870 wingmaster and love it for upland. Mine only shoots 2 3/4 inch shells so it not to good for turkey and waterfowl. I'm sure newer ones take larger shells. I bought a benelli nova when they first came out and love it for the turkey and ducks.
A perk of majoring in wildlife biology in college is the plethora of hunting knowledge that you collect throughout your course load. One of the most important factors in whether an area can hold large quantities of animals or produce large antlers is forage.
Most universities, state schools and even community colleges offer basic botany courses and plant ID courses. Although it might not be feasable for the average middle age hunter to pay tuition and go back to college to learn hunting...