Gobbling on the roost/shock gobbling ????'s

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Gobbling on the roost/shock gobbling ????'s

Unread postby stash59 » Wed Apr 01, 2020 3:27 pm

I'm sure my lack of turkey hunting experience is showing with these questions. But here goes.

How much before and or how late after sunset should one expect most toms to roost and then gobble? And again but in reverse in the morning in relation to sunrise. I'm sure there are plenty of times that they don't gobble. Nothing shock gobbles them. No hens are talking within their earshot. Or they're just not in the mood.

While watching some of THP vids. I was surprised at how late in the day owl hoots worked. It seemed to be mainly down south. So does area make a difference, as far as owl hoot shock gobbling goes. Are there way more barred owls down south? Which makes the toms shock more often when they hear one. Then say here in WI.

In relatively flat country. With a calm wind and some open areas. Like across a lake or large field/s. How far away can a gobble from a tree'd tom be heard?

Can they get shock gobble shy towards season end?

Would using hen talk too early in the year, when putting them to bed, make them call shy sooner? Or from spots hens never roost or are never to be found at/near later the next day.

Any buddy ever made/used a sandhill crane call to shock gobble toms? I believe, at least early in the morning. I've heard both species reacting to each others calls!


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Re: Gobbling on the roost/shock gobbling ????'s

Unread postby Bio1 » Wed Apr 01, 2020 4:24 pm

stash59 wrote:I'm sure my lack of turkey hunting experience is showing with these questions. But here goes.

How much before and or how late after sunset should one expect most toms to roost and then gobble? And again but in reverse in the morning in relation to sunrise. I'm sure there are plenty of times that they don't gobble. Nothing shock gobbles them. No hens are talking within their earshot. Or they're just not in the mood.

While watching some of THP vids. I was surprised at how late in the day owl hoots worked. It seemed to be mainly down south. So does area make a difference, as far as owl hoot shock gobbling goes. Are there way more barred owls down south? Which makes the toms shock more often when they hear one. Then say here in WI.

In relatively flat country. With a calm wind and some open areas. Like across a lake or large field/s. How far away can a gobble from a tree'd tom be heard?

Can they get shock gobble shy towards season end?

Would using hen talk too early in the year, when putting them to bed, make them call shy sooner? Or from spots hens never roost or are never to be found at/near later the next day.

Any buddy ever made/used a sandhill crane call to shock gobble toms? I believe, at least early in the morning. I've heard both species reacting to each others calls!


In my experience i will hear them gobbling on their way to roost and then once they fly up. I use an owl in the eve or coyote to get them to gobble. Once I know where they are I don’t mess with them anymore. If I know he is in the tree and If I’m fairly close I have “flown up” and yelped a bit to get them thinking my way for the morn. If not close I don’t hem talk to them.

In the morning I’ve heard them gobble a good hour before shooting light but not very often. Usually 15 - 20 minutes before shooting light. I have good luck with a barred owl early and then a crow or pileated woodpecker later in the morn.

They can be heard along way over water especially before green up. Once it is pretty green you can’t hear them nearly as far - especially on the ground. I’d say a half mile or better prior to green up around water or open ag fields.

I haven’t tried a sandhill but if you’ve heard them respond then it sounds like it works!

Good luck,

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Re: Gobbling on the roost/shock gobbling ????'s

Unread postby Jdw » Thu Apr 02, 2020 9:52 am

I typically listen before the season starts and note when I hear the first gobble in the morning and the last gobble in the evening.

If you get there 30 minutes before it breaks day and stay until 30 minutes after pitch black it will put you where you don’t miss much but they might start earlier and go later than that.

There is usually a window of time when they are getting ready to fly down in the morning and up in the evening, when they are quiet for a while.

The distance you can hear one changes based on terrain. If there are no hills or trees between you the sound goes a long way but put a hill or trees between you and it will block the sound. As bio 1 mentioned it changes a lot from before to after green up.
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Re: Gobbling on the roost/shock gobbling ????'s

Unread postby Cchez » Fri Apr 03, 2020 4:52 am

I've heard them shock gobble at all kinds of odd things. Train horns, cows mooing, truck doors shutting, crows calling, owls, and so on.
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Re: Gobbling on the roost/shock gobbling ????'s

Unread postby simpzenith » Fri Apr 03, 2020 5:11 am

stash59 wrote:I'm sure my lack of turkey hunting experience is showing with these questions. But here goes.

1) How much before and or how late after sunset should one expect most toms to roost and then gobble? And again but in reverse in the morning in relation to sunrise. I'm sure there are plenty of times that they don't gobble. Nothing shock gobbles them. No hens are talking within their earshot. Or they're just not in the mood.

2) While watching some of THP vids. I was surprised at how late in the day owl hoots worked. It seemed to be mainly down south. So does area make a difference, as far as owl hoot shock gobbling goes. Are there way more barred owls down south? Which makes the toms shock more often when they hear one. Then say here in WI.

3) In relatively flat country. With a calm wind and some open areas. Like across a lake or large field/s. How far away can a gobble from a tree'd tom be heard?

4) Can they get shock gobble shy towards season end?

5) Would using hen talk too early in the year, when putting them to bed, make them call shy sooner? Or from spots hens never roost or are never to be found at/near later the next day.

6) Any buddy ever made/used a sandhill crane call to shock gobble toms? I believe, at least early in the morning. I've heard both species reacting to each others calls!


1) The best chance to get a gobbler to shock gobble is when he is on the limb, away from the hens. Turkeys typically fly up to roost from about sunset to 15 minutes after but will vary slightly depending on whether the roost is in open terrain or heavily wooded terrain, and the amount of leaf cover on the trees. Turkeys typically fly down about 15 minutes or so before sunrise but may stay in the tree much later depending on other circumstances.

2) It doesn't make a difference. Owl calls typically produce better results throughout the day in my experience. The monotony of crows cawing throughout the day probably results in gobblers "tuning" them out. A goose call or coyote call is also effective. Something loud and high pitched is probably the best type of locator call.

3) A very long distance! I've heard gobbles from more than a mile away.

4) No such thing as "shock gobble or call shy"

5) See #4

6) No, but it would probably work well.
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Re: Gobbling on the roost/shock gobbling ????'s

Unread postby PK_ » Fri Apr 03, 2020 2:49 pm

I am thinking of getting some sort of whistle because those whistling ducks seem to really get good responses.

I think I remember someone talking about using a whistle, maybe BigHunt.
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Re: Gobbling on the roost/shock gobbling ????'s

Unread postby Racks&Beards » Sat Apr 04, 2020 2:07 am

Cchez wrote:I've heard them shock gobble at all kinds of odd things. Train horns, cows mooing, truck doors shutting, crows calling, owls, and so on.


I've got a shock gobble in the evening by literally yelling "HEY TURKEY!!" really loud. :lol:
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Re: Gobbling on the roost/shock gobbling ????'s

Unread postby BigHunt » Fri May 01, 2020 5:44 am

PK_ wrote:I am thinking of getting some sort of whistle because those whistling ducks seem to really get good responses.

I think I remember someone talking about using a whistle, maybe BigHunt.

Yes that was me.. I use an old brass whistle.. it has that right pitch and frequency.
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Re: Gobbling on the roost/shock gobbling ????'s

Unread postby greenhorndave » Fri May 01, 2020 10:17 am

I’m gonna try some of these on neighborhood birds nobody can hunt. :D

Nothing like a little live practice.
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Re: Gobbling on the roost/shock gobbling ????'s

Unread postby greenhorndave » Fri May 01, 2020 10:22 am

oh, what about gobbling gobbling to roost or locate like this guy...

https://youtu.be/7ps5t5jYg3s

Yeah, it’s farm birds, but you get the idea.

Anyone ever do that?
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Re: Gobbling on the roost/shock gobbling ????'s

Unread postby cspot » Fri May 01, 2020 12:53 pm

My experience is usually in the morning on the limb they will gobble and shock gobble pretty easy. Most of the time you don't even have to do anything. The evening when they get on the limb it can be hit and miss even when doing some sort of locator call.
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Re: Gobbling on the roost/shock gobbling ????'s

Unread postby DhD » Sat May 02, 2020 12:22 am

I know an old timer who owns some private land he lives on, and likes to hunt for turkeys. He doesn't bother scouting, just waits till about 10 pm, goes out in his front yard, and fires one shell out of his shotgun. According to him you will hear every bird on the property.

For some practical advice, I picked up a much nicer wooden Crow call from woodhaven. Seems to work better at getting shock gobbles.
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Re: Gobbling on the roost/shock gobbling ????'s

Unread postby Hawthorne » Sat May 02, 2020 1:23 am

I had one roost near me this year probably an hour before full darkness. I watched him up in the tree. Pretty cool he was strutting up there and pecking at the branch. Every time a flock of ducks flew by the sounds of their wings shock gobbled him. He was roosted over a pond. It’s an area they roost every year. So the next evening I set up by the roost where he was the night before then he roosted on the other side of the pond where I was the night before. I think turkeys are more intelligent than people give them credit
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Re: Gobbling on the roost/shock gobbling ????'s

Unread postby cspot » Sat May 02, 2020 1:06 pm

Tonight is a good example as we were trying to roost some turkeys for tomorrows general opener. My son and I split up and he went on one ridge and I went on another. We went out about an hr before dark. As soon as he got up on his ridge he heard a far away gobble out in a field. That was the only gobble that either of us heard all evening. He did some crow calling and I did some owl hooting about dark and even when it was pitch black and nothing. Last weekend for the youth day we probably heard about 8-9 birds on these same ridges and I would guess we will hear the same in the morning. The evening can be hit or miss when getting them to shock gobble. The weather was pretty nice and calm this evening as well.
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Re: Gobbling on the roost/shock gobbling ????'s

Unread postby stash59 » Sun May 03, 2020 5:05 am

cspot wrote:Tonight is a good example as we were trying to roost some turkeys for tomorrows general opener. My son and I split up and he went on one ridge and I went on another. We went out about an hr before dark. As soon as he got up on his ridge he heard a far away gobble out in a field. That was the only gobble that either of us heard all evening. He did some crow calling and I did some owl hooting about dark and even when it was pitch black and nothing. Last weekend for the youth day we probably heard about 8-9 birds on these same ridges and I would guess we will hear the same in the morning. The evening can be hit or miss when getting them to shock gobble. The weather was pretty nice and calm this evening as well.


Thanx for all of the replies!!!

Been finding this out myself. Spent a couple evenings followed by mornings in the same location as the evening before. Roughly 3 times more toms heard in the mornings versus the evenings!!!

One more ?. Bighunt mentioned timing in the evenings, and mornings also. How about timing as far as time of year. Bighunt likes to locate birds before any seasons open here in WI. I've heard birds gobbling in the fall myself. Others have mentioned it happening other times of the year too. But it's inconsistent. So how long before most seasons open? Can you get toms consistently answering your shock gobble calls. Or even gobbling on there own?
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