Turkey Hunting: Your Stubborn Self

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We have all had 'that conversation' in the turkey camp.  It is typically done around the corner and under the pretense of secrecy.  One hunter expresses his frustration in the decision making process of his morning hunting partner to another hunter in camp.  The agitated hunter insists that he would have killed a turkey had his companion not been so stubborn. The plaintiff notes the defendants desire to sit and wait it out, when in his opinion, a move was necessary.  The judge agrees with the plaintiff, and the defendant hunts alone the next day.

We all have a preferred way of doing things in the spring woods.  It is human nature to stick with what has led to success in the past.  After all, if it is not broke, then why should we fix it?

What we fail to remember is that just as no two turkey hunters are alike, the same holds true for turkeys.  And just as our emotions vary from day to day, so do those of turkeys, meaning you must be willing to adapt.

The toughest turkeys, in my experience, are those that are lovers of the unpredictable.  They simply cannot be patterned, because they have no consistent behavior from day to day.  All you can hope to do is catch them on a day they are lonely and looking for love.

These turkeys require the approach many door-to-door salesmen use: the variable approach.  Some salesmen are good at soft talking their clients.  Others use reverse psychology.  The best, however, can do it all with equal efficiency.

The most complete turkey hunter I had the pleasure of hunting with was Larry Norton, a two-time world champion caller and a veteran guide at several lodges throughout west Alabama.  I was young at the time we hunted together, but was mesmerized at how he called in three different hook-spurred, hard-hunted Alabama gobblers into gunrange one April morning, only to have my youth let them off the hook.  Each turkey was a little different-including one flying across a small river-and he adjusted his sales pitch accordingly.

Norton is a prime example of hunter that was not going to let a style preference get in the way of success.  He's naturally a power caller, but understands that playing off the script is a good way to go home empty handed.

I have been fortunate to hunt with a variety of hunters, from the yelp twice and shut up crowd to the blow out your mouth call until he's dead type.  Both are effective styles-if they have a turkey that prefers that style.  But like Norton, you have to be versatile. Sure, the ability to yelp soft and loud helps.  However, the overall attitude of each hunter has as much to do with the success than the volume of the sounds he makes.

The bottomline, again, is being willing to change up your attack and offering to get the job done.  Pride in one strategy can be the turkey hunters' worst enemy, and a willingness to adapt can be his or her best friend.
Wild Turkey Report Staff
Wild Turkey Report is the internet's new destination for information on the sport of turkey hunting. Follow them on Facebook at www.facebook.com/wildturkeyreport and on Twitter @wildturkeyreprt!
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