Haven't been turkey hunting in twenty years, need some help.

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DhD
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Haven't been turkey hunting in twenty years, need some help.

Unread postby DhD » Thu Apr 09, 2020 2:19 pm

Title pretty much says it. I have lots of time on my hands, so I am thinking about going turkey hunting, and I could use some help. I KNOW PRETTY MUCH NOTHING ABOUT TURKEY HUNTING. I have killed a couple of birds, but when I was in high school. My dad always had a private spot, and scouted the birds for us. He told me where to set up a blind, when and how to call, etc . I could use some advice on basic turkey hunting strategies and such. I will be hunting public land in Eastern Nebraska, and I prefer not to use a blind. I have a box call that I know how to use a little, and I have a couple of mouth calls, but I have not really used them. Other than that as far as gear I have all of my whitetail stuff, my ghillie suit, the aforementioned calls, my old Winchester semi auto 2 3/4 12 gauge, and a box of turkey shells I bought a couple weeks ago. I would appreciate advice on what other kind of gear I need, what kind of decoy I should use, and what things I am not thinking of that I will need :lol:. I am trying to keep this halfway cost efficient. On the plus side, there are a couple of public land spots that I have seen turkeys on several times. At least one of them I marked a couple of roost trees last season while scouting deer in the spring. Advice on what to look for on OnX maps when cyber scouting could be helpful as well.

Really I am hoping for some simple direction. If there are articles, videos, or whatever else that has helped you with BASIC strategy, I would appreciate links and advice. Season starts in ten days here so I have a little time to scout. Any help is useful, thank you!


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Re: Haven't been turkey hunting in twenty years, need some help.

Unread postby muddy » Thu Apr 09, 2020 2:26 pm

I think Nebraska closed down non resident hunting because of the 'Rona?
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Re: Haven't been turkey hunting in twenty years, need some help.

Unread postby Uncle Lou » Thu Apr 09, 2020 2:27 pm

My advice; go, move, listen, attack, and have fun. Turkeys are where you find them.
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Re: Haven't been turkey hunting in twenty years, need some help.

Unread postby DhD » Thu Apr 09, 2020 2:28 pm

muddy wrote:I think Nebraska closed down non resident hunting because of the 'Rona?

Good thing I'm a resident then :D
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Re: Haven't been turkey hunting in twenty years, need some help.

Unread postby muddy » Thu Apr 09, 2020 2:31 pm

DhD wrote:
muddy wrote:I think Nebraska closed down non resident hunting because of the 'Rona?

Good thing I'm a resident then :D


In that case just take it slow and easy! Call sporadically, be still, and enjoy your time in the field.
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Re: Haven't been turkey hunting in twenty years, need some help.

Unread postby DhD » Fri Apr 10, 2020 2:37 pm

OK here is a more specific question, when you are satellite scouting what are you looking for? Trying to narrow down some areas to scout tomorrow.
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Re: Haven't been turkey hunting in twenty years, need some help.

Unread postby Ack » Fri Apr 10, 2020 5:12 pm

I’ll be honest with you....cyber scouting for turkeys isn’t going to be easy....could be feast or famine. Where you might find them one year could be completely devoid of birds the following year. They just aren’t as predictable as deer when relating to certain terrain and cover.....especially in large tracts of public where pressure may be a factor.

Just a quick glance at an aerial of eastern Nebraska shows me a lot of broken up woodlots with ag scattered about, which I my opinion is perfect turkey habitat.

You’re time is going to be best spent following Lou’s suggestion....locate actual groups of birds, listen for gobblers at daybreak, and make a plan to get yourself in front of them. Don’t feel like you need to rush right in to a roost on the first morning. Observe, take note of movement patterns and make a plan of attack, just like you would on a bedded buck.
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Re: Haven't been turkey hunting in twenty years, need some help.

Unread postby brancher147 » Fri Apr 10, 2020 10:58 pm

DhD wrote:OK here is a more specific question, when you are satellite scouting what are you looking for? Trying to narrow down some areas to scout tomorrow.


I look for habitat and terrain diversity including water and multiple roosting points and thickets or cut timber. Some fields or old fields close by are good if you can find it.
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Re: Haven't been turkey hunting in twenty years, need some help.

Unread postby FareChase » Sat Apr 11, 2020 6:40 am

Camouflage, facemask, gloves, hat, all you have and plenty of patience. You made mention you can run a box call a little, that’s perfect, less is more! Some hunters like to make turkeys gobble until their waddle hurts and sometimes that may work but I’ve found less is more. My opinion, a Tom gobbles to get a hen to come to him not the other way around. Get a turkeys attention with a hen call, making him a gobble once or twice and put your call away, he knows EXACTLY where you are! Keep a stick close by and use it to scratch in the leaves, you will sound like a hen feeding and if the bird doesn’t show up in 30 to 45 minutes well he gone...
As far as scouting, look for areas where leaves have been turned over, that’s where turkeys are and have been feeding. You can also do some field checking mid day but leave all your calls in the truck so your not tempted to try an make one gobble, turkeys figure us humans out real quick like...
Formulate a plan, be where you want to be in the morning before the horizon starts turning pink (sunrise) and move slowly and methodically toward that gobbling bird, he gobbles, you move a little closer and 100 yards is plenty close enough for you to say good morning to that Tom in your sexiest hen voice. Most importantly, have fun and be safe, springtime is a beautiful time of the year!
Good luck Rookie...
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Re: Haven't been turkey hunting in twenty years, need some help.

Unread postby DhD » Sat Apr 11, 2020 10:48 am

FareChase wrote:Camouflage, facemask, gloves, hat, all you have and plenty of patience. You made mention you can run a box call a little, that’s perfect, less is more! Some hunters like to make turkeys gobble until their waddle hurts and sometimes that may work but I’ve found less is more. My opinion, a Tom gobbles to get a hen to come to him not the other way around. Get a turkeys attention with a hen call, making him a gobble once or twice and put your call away, he knows EXACTLY where you are! Keep a stick close by and use it to scratch in the leaves, you will sound like a hen feeding and if the bird doesn’t show up in 30 to 45 minutes well he gone...
As far as scouting, look for areas where leaves have been turned over, that’s where turkeys are and have been feeding. You can also do some field checking mid day but leave all your calls in the truck so your not tempted to try an make one gobble, turkeys figure us humans out real quick like...
Formulate a plan, be where you want to be in the morning before the horizon starts turning pink (sunrise) and move slowly and methodically toward that gobbling bird, he gobbles, you move a little closer and 100 yards is plenty close enough for you to say good morning to that Tom in your sexiest hen voice. Most importantly, have fun and be safe, springtime is a beautiful time of the year!
Good luck Rookie...

This is all extremely useful thank you!
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Re: Haven't been turkey hunting in twenty years, need some help.

Unread postby FareChase » Sat Apr 11, 2020 11:04 am

Can’t wait to hear your success story...
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Re: Haven't been turkey hunting in twenty years, need some help.

Unread postby greenhorndave » Sat Apr 11, 2020 12:03 pm

FareChase wrote:Camouflage, facemask, gloves, hat, all you have and plenty of patience. You made mention you can run a box call a little, that’s perfect, less is more! Some hunters like to make turkeys gobble until their waddle hurts and sometimes that may work but I’ve found less is more. My opinion, a Tom gobbles to get a hen to come to him not the other way around. Get a turkeys attention with a hen call, making him a gobble once or twice and put your call away, he knows EXACTLY where you are! Keep a stick close by and use it to scratch in the leaves, you will sound like a hen feeding and if the bird doesn’t show up in 30 to 45 minutes well he gone...
As far as scouting, look for areas where leaves have been turned over, that’s where turkeys are and have been feeding. You can also do some field checking mid day but leave all your calls in the truck so your not tempted to try an make one gobble, turkeys figure us humans out real quick like...
Formulate a plan, be where you want to be in the morning before the horizon starts turning pink (sunrise) and move slowly and methodically toward that gobbling bird, he gobbles, you move a little closer and 100 yards is plenty close enough for you to say good morning to that Tom in your sexiest hen voice. Most importantly, have fun and be safe, springtime is a beautiful time of the year!
Good luck Rookie...

Great stuff man!
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Re: Haven't been turkey hunting in twenty years, need some help.

Unread postby backstraps » Sat Apr 11, 2020 1:31 pm

Got some good replies Dave! Hope you get on them and have a great time doing so
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Re: Haven't been turkey hunting in twenty years, need some help.

Unread postby DhD » Wed Apr 22, 2020 1:21 am

Got on them first thing this morning, saw one fly off the roost but went the wrong way. Lots of gobbling for the first couple hours, now radio silence. How long do folks usually wait to move?
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Re: Haven't been turkey hunting in twenty years, need some help.

Unread postby DhD » Wed Apr 22, 2020 2:10 am

No gobbles for about an hour now, just hung a cell cam, now I'm going for a walk. Not gonna lie, the gobbling in the morning is pretty exciting!
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