Turkey Blog with Steve Hickoff

Steve Hickoff is Realtree.com's editorial director and turkey hunting editor. He’s been beaten by more birds than he can remember. Still he kills enough to eat well, and fool with beards, spurs and fans until the next season. Pennsylvania born and raised, Maine is his home base now. A full-time outdoor communicator with a couple university writing degrees, he chases spring gobblers and fall flocks around the country.

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Should You Shoot a Hen This Fall Turkey Season?

Memories are many in the fall turkey woods. Decisions are often based on specific hunts and personal decisions. Call me a softie, but I've called in an autumn brood hen and its single bird-of-the-year – failed to decide in that passing moment whether shooting the adult or juvenile turkey (both...


Why 42 States Have Fall Turkey Seasons

As of this writing, 42 states offer some form of a fall turkey hunting season. A number of these even extend it into winter. Why then do the others not offer a "second season" on the most popular game bird on the planet? The reasons are many. Wild turkey management...


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How to Build a Turkey Spur Skinning Knife

Every turkey hunter loves a long, sharp spur. And we love to show those spurs off on necklaces, key chains, hatbands and meter-long assemblies of hooks. But what about turning the leg of your trophy tom into a useful hunting tool? This knife, crafted with a turkey leg handle, is...


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How to Build a Tabletop Turkey Fan Display

From simply pinning the fan to the wall of your hunting camp to elaborate plaques designed to show off the fan in all its glory, there are countless ways to hang a turkey fan. But what if you want to display your fan on your desk, or on a table...


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5 Excuses and the Truth: Why You Missed Turkeys This Season

Missing turkeys is part of the game. All veteran turkey hunters have been there, and if you haven't yet, brace yourself. It hurts. Memories of that strutter stepping up into range – and the 10 inches of swinging beard running off after you pull your shotgun's trigger – will haunt...


3 Reasons Why You Love and Hate the End of Turkey Hunting Season

Admit it, you both love and hate the end of turkey season. A few words follow on why. Early on, you love the early risings, driving through a sleeping town to an all-night gas station for early coffee and doughnuts, where you run into a few other camo-clad hunters and...


5 Tips for Hunting Tough Gobblers

If your spring turkey season is still open, and you're still carrying a tag, you likely have a few tough gobblers on your mind. Here's how to tag one. 1. Get Tight Get tight to its roost tree well before sunrise. Call softly with a no-hands mouth call, if at...


9 Things You Should Do After Killing a Turkey

The longbeard you want gobbles on the roost. Gobbles on the ground. Gobbles in range. And you make a clean, ethical shot. In the rush of sweet moments after killing a wild turkey, it's sometimes hard to catch your breath. Of course, a lot of folks first check the spurs...


Federal Introduces New Custom-Loaded Ammunition Shop

Here's some breaking news for hunters and shooters alike. Federal will introduce to its customers a concept for its new custom-loaded ammunition shop at the NRA Annual Meetings & Exhibits in Indianapolis, Indiana, April 26-28, 2019. The company is also taking surveys at the show to get feedback from consumers...


Blind Sit to Kill Your Late-Season Turkey

It's getting late. And you've still got a tag to fill. Maybe it’s time to blind sit to fill your final tag of the season. Hub-style blinds are light and compact enough to carry. Set up is easy as take down. Many can accommodate several hunters. Some have shoot-through mesh...


10 Dumb Things You Do While Turkey Hunting

You've all been there. Hunt enough and you'll be there again. And again. Ten dumb things you do while turkey hunting follow. Trust me, I'm an expert at it. You too? 1. Stand When You Should Sit Patience kills turkeys, the old saying goes. Lack of it scares them off...


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Top 5 May Turkey Hunting States

Southern turkey hunters get an early start on the rest of the country, often beginning their spring season in March. Up North, chances are some snow still covers the ground. Gobbler chasing often doesn't begin until late April or early May. In other parts of the country, it starts early...


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