Turkey Hunting Articles

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Strut Report: Expect Good Turkey Hunting Down South This Weekend

Last week , and even the week before , we reported on the how much the turkey hunting has improved throughout the South. While that trend largely continues, there have been sporadic downturns in activity. Backwoods Life’s Kevin Knighton is having a great season. He and his hunting buddies have...


Strut Report: Southern Turkeys are Red Hot

Though season is still a few weeks away in some parts of the country, down south the woods are firing up with strutting and gobbling. From Texas to Tennessee, southern turkey hunters have turned in glowing reports this week. In Alabama, where the hunting recently kicked off, Spring Thunder and...


Why Mouth Calls are Overrated for Turkey Hunting

If you’re a novice turkey caller learning to use a mouth call, a good thing to do is buy a box call or pot and learn that instead. I say this because mouth calls can be dangerous. This is because they’re easy to swallow but hard to digest. Plus, you...


Strut Report: The Gobbling and Strutting Action Is Picking Up

We're a week deeper into the spring and with that comes more news from the turkey woods. At the beginning of last week, we talked about how the Deep South seasons were off to a slow gobbling start . That’s changing, though, and in the past five days, the hunting...


Selling Camo Ain’t Easy: The Dodd Clifton Story

Dodd Clifton is walking laps around the parking lot at the end of Box Circle in Columbus, Georgia. He’s on the clock. Bill Jordan, founder of Realtree Camouflage and Dodd’s boss of 30 years, is in his truck, talking to me on the phone about Dodd when the man himself...


Set up a Youth Turkey Gun in 5 Easy Steps

With youth turkey seasons just around the corner, now’s the time to get your young hunters outfitted with the right gun and load combination. Not long ago, a suitable turkey gun was defined as a 12-gauge shooting a 3-inch magnum turkey load … at the very least. Sometimes, that was...


Tips for .410 Turkey Hunting

Boom. Down. Dead with a knockout punch. As my friends know, I’m a die-hard, old-school turkey hunter who believes in the big boom: a 12-gauge shotgun, reliably choked, is my best option for dropping turkeys in their tracks with confidence. Fact is, many of my grizzled turkey buddies who might...


Strut Report: Deep South Seasons Off to Slow Gobbling Start

Winter is finally fading away and in some parts of the country, turkey season is here. In others, it soon will be. But our focus is on the former. Florida is the starting gun to turkey season each year. This year, youth season opened February 26-27 in the South Zone...


10 Reasons Why You Suck at Calling Turkeys

Turkeys aren’t difficult to call. People keep telling you that. Yet, you know they don’t gobble at you much. Even when they do, they don’t come to you. You’ve never had any luck “blind calling,” and truth be told, you watched a group of jakes, supposedly the dumbest creatures in...


Are Southern Turkeys Harder to Kill?

Many traveling turkey hunters will tell you: The toughest turkeys to hunt are in the South. In fact, I reached out to more than three dozen veteran hunters, and more than half of them confirmed it. Southern turkeys are simply the toughest to kill. They point to a plethora of...


Pull Off a DIY Merriam’s Turkey Hunt in 3 Days

Killing a mountain Merriam’s gobbler is a challenge. These turkeys tend to run in large groups with alert wild eyes and strong legs, and they often move far and wide from roosting locations. Don’t expect to see them loafing in the same small plots all day like an Eastern. The...


Bowhunting Turkeys is Hard. This Advice Makes it Easier.

Several toms were sounding off from the roost as I positioned my blind and decoys. I thought I was in for a sure thing but as the morning unfolded, they held up in the timber 150 yards away. After two hours, I grew impatient and decided to hike across the...


How to Guide a New Turkey Hunter

Anonymity is what guides share quietly at those side tables off from the main dining area in hunting camps around the country. They’re free to trade smiles, grins, polite whispers, and jokes punctuated by rowdy laughter, plus tales of commiseration. A delicate dynamic of respect ensures that stories are kept...


Fall Turkey Hunting on Public Land

This title bout involved three guys, a turkey dog, and a gang of fall longbeards. A friend had the birds, which he’d seen while bowhunting. I had the dog. Our other buddy had the tag to fill. Deep in the Vermont woods, my white renegade English setter cast back and...


History’s Biggest Turkey Poaching Busts

Poachers steal resources and opportunity from everyone, and even relatively minor violations get hunters justifiably upset. But some incidents really roil law-abiding outdoorsmen and law-enforcement officials. That’s especially true with turkeys, which were pushed to the brink a century ago and nurtured back to today’s thriving populations only through the...


3 Great Stories About Hunting Mamas

Maybe your mom taught you to hunt. Maybe she runs the tractor during food plot season, sights in the rifles, sets the decoys, or does all the cooking. Wherever she fits into your hunting family, chances are it's an important role. Remember to say "thanks" to her this Mother's Day...


Don't Fear the Turkey Mouth Call

Afraid of using a mouth call? Your yelps failing to close the deal? Not sure which diaphragm to choose? Pennsylvania’s Scott Basehore is a longtime turkey hunter, guide, contest judge, and award-winning call maker at the highest level. I caught up with him for tips on how to improve your...


Long Distance Turkey Calling

“If you have a turkey gobbling to your calling, but it’s far off,” my dad used to say, “and it shuts up, get ready. It might be on the way.” And man, I have thought of that tidbit of wisdom many times since. My father hunted ridge-running Pennsylvania turkeys, just...


The Toughest Turkey Hunting States

Defining a tough turkey hunt is tricky. Some hunters expect to easily fill tags on cooperative birds. Others measure a quality hunt by the standard of unpressured, gobbling turkeys in pretty places. Two old-school measures of toughness include shut-mouthed or henned-up strutters. Still, certain states are especially tough due to...


Best Turkey Hunting Road Trips

The familiar gravity of the open road is strong as black coffee, as familiar as the playlist you sing to, beating time on the steering wheel. Landscapes slip by like a movie on fast forward. Gas stop to gas stop, you wheel through the dark to the season’s first daybreak...


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