Congrats to all involved in the youth hunt. Let's start with Period A and follow the season with Hunting reports, conditions, pics of birds killed. Good luck to everyone!
2017 Bird Reports
A proud dad story.
Last deer hunting season, my son and I seen some nice Toms running around. My son tells me he seen a "monster tom with twin beards." He asked, why don't we turkey hunt? I haven't turkey hunted in 20 years. Priorities, I say. Like waterfowl, deer, fish, trap shooting, your sisters hobbies, work, dog training, yard work, etc. We don't have the time, and we can't do it all. And just after you were born I gave my dec's and calls away. Gave him pretty much every excuse I had. Short of telling him, I find it about as exciting as deer hunting. His reply "you can't do it all, but can i ?". Sure, Yeah, I guess so? I forget he is old enough to learn and hunt without me. Not just my little boy I take with me anymore. It was kind of a moment? Tugged on the heart strings a bit. Damn time is going fast.
So I told him figure it out. We'll be up a few times during the season. I'll work on the deck you can hunt. Threw the winter he turned into a turkey hunter. This call, that call, I read this and that, decoys for Christmas, strut zone, shock calls, saving money for a owl and crow call. Asking me all kinds of in-depth questions about our land. First weekend we got up there, he tells me, "dad, I'll be up and out early". OK. Where and Just be careful. 1:30pm comes around and he's not back? The fellas that know my boy, knows he doesn't like to be hungry. So I went out to check on him. He was hunkered down in a brush pile waiting. A quick "all good" and a thumbs up. From morning to night every day. He passed on Jakes and a tom. Waiting for old twin beard. It was unbelievable, two weekends of this? The boy is a turkey huntin fool. The last weekend, he says, really want to fill my tag. If i shoot a Jake would you be proud of me. I was speechless. I told him, the first day you asked me to hunt turkeys, I was proud. It showed me you're interested in hunting. Not just doing it because I do. You could of hung at the camp, rode the atvs around, etc. Instead you wanted to hunt more. I'm very proud, that means I did something right. Shoot, wait, tom, jake? You do what you want. He tells me some turkey hunting jargon, knows where they Roost, first beard I see I'm taking it. The last morning, BOOM! I threw the drill down, jumped off the deck, on to the Utv and rollin. Think I was more excited than he was. He shot his first turkey, on his own first hunting adventure. Nice first jake. My apologies for the long story, just a proud dad.
Well I was fortunate enough to punch all three of my tags this year for Zone 2.
Period A: After a frustrating beginning to the season due to a number of run-ins with other hunters on private property I settled for taking an 18.5 lb Jake with a 3 3/4" beard on the last day of the season that I was going to be able to hunt. Most frustrating part was on opening morning I passed on three Jakes in the decoys at 14 yards with my bow and a buddy there to video it.
Period E: Had a great first morning out with another buddy and was able to take a 20 lb Tom with a 9 1/4" beard and 7/8" spurs. Killed the bird at 5:26 AM and got great footage of it all. Here's the link (CLICK HERE) if you care to watch the YouTube video.
Period F: Went out again with same buddy as Period E and took another Tom this one weight 21.5 lbs with a 9" beard and 1/2" spurs. Killed the bird at 5:20 AM but do to the bird not following our script weren't able to get very good footage.
It's always fun being out in the turkey woods and just a bit sweeter when no tag goes unfilled. I finally have enough turkey meat to bring it all in to Maplewoods to get some turkey sticks made!
Was a good year for me in Waupaca as well. 1st season took me 8 hrs for a nice Tom, 3rd season was a 25 min sit for a jake, and the sixth season was a 11hr. wait to take a jake. Bonus having the eagles come back and nest again [2nd year] on our land.
sat sunday AM dodging rain drops but turned out to be a nice morning even had a couple gobblers hammering after fly down they were on another side of a creek so I figured they would'nt make it my way anyways packed up and check on two other properties trying to get a gobble but didnt hear anything so went home, skeeters really woke up too after the rain basically laughing at my thermacell jeeez.
ate some lunch and planned on heading back out in the PM for a couple hours the it got hot out and the wind really cranked up in the afternoon so figured it would be tough until just before close, planned on packing up my blind and everything anyways and sleeping in Monday AM so my fiancee' and I headed out around 4 got dekes set and got in blind and i hear humming of an ATV and talking , neighbors are out zipping around on atv through woods then the shooting starts in 2 directions o swell, its a nice day in May who gives a crap about turkey huntin! anyways i wasnt to confident at this point with all the activity going on so I took a short nap while kristin read her book, about 7pm it got quiet and the wind stopped an was a real nice evening i look out much to my shagrin i see a turkey and it has a beard well wth! jake makes big loop around dekes feeding and off into the woods behind us at about 45yds, ugggg! well atleast we saw one kristin says maybe it will pop back out, naaaa he's gone haha half hour later i look to my right here he comes back out feeding his way to about 30yds i put the bead on um and the #5's dropped um in his tracks what an awesome hunt and end to the season especially havin my girl with me this was her 3rd time with me she doesnt want to hunt at all but likes to just sit and read so i'll take that, nice bird about a 5" beard and 14-15lbs played cat and mouse with gobblers all season and after going 0-2 on birds during B i was on a mission and ended my season 3-3 un real you gatta love the kings of spring!! going to be a long year until next April!
congrats to all who harvsested a bird this spring!
zone 3- Waupaca co.
Been a tough 2 days with several encounters and goofy birds again, going between 3 properties, the turkey gods helped out this morning after not hearing any gobbles and the sun poped out a bit I did some soft calling and I look to my right and see a bird walking into the decoys, bird was on my right and I was siting to the right so getting the gun up without getting busted was a bit tough but I got it up just in time and dropped him at about 10-15 yds was a hefty magnum jake with a 6" beard and 1/2" nub/spur very happy with him after a couple tough hunts, hopefully the rain holds off still have a tag to fill we'll see what happens the next 2 days.
goodluck to all out chasin um yet!
Been a tough period E hunted fairly hard, wed pm just a few hens, friday hunted pretty much all day between public and private land but was very windy and cold seen a few jakes and hens far off but nothing up close, saturday am hunted before work and I ended up going out very early well before 4am and i ended up right in the middle of a turkey bedroom had gobbling 40-50 yds away from me from multiple toms and cackling from what i thought was maybe 1 or 2 hens sitting on edge of a huge plowed field this is goin to be awesome they will fly rite down to me, which kinda happend after the sun poped all heck broke loose birds pitiching down from all over rite over the top of me hens jakes atleast 20 they hit the field and trot off i go well the gig is up here i still have gobblin just over my left shoulder and i see 10 more birds come walking out with 2 toms semi-strut i get the gun up and they see that and start walking off i pull a rushed shot on one of the toms and nothing they ran off up the hill, swell! went to work then it rained no PM hunt but needed a break anyways hard functioning on 5 hours of sleep! worked sunday AM til 1pm back out checked a private field that butts public see some jakes and 2 toms with a hen i sneek into the public sit down in woods and start sof calling the hen starts calling back and gobblin starts they are comin my way all i see is red heads and fans coming through the grass, hen pops out with toms in tow on a deer trail, looks around and cluk cluk cluk! ug $@$@#%$#! they all walk off, leave there and go set up on a big public field for the rest of the evening wind was terrible again and i didnt see or hear anything i start packing up and i look out one more time and i see a bird coming my way; figures! so i sit my fat arse back down in my busted chair that the leg snapped off on an hour earlier i glass the bird its a hen the wind gusts and i see a beard swing down no way bearded hen, i get the gun up and she comes to 30yds POW! rite down she sported a 7" nice beard for a hen and was aprox 15lbs, real nice bird especially for my last hunting day and off public land, somebody was even kind enough to jam my lost hunting seat in a tree for me which i found on the walk out so double bonus! was a tough hunt but happy with the bird i got. back up to waupaca for the last hoorah this week.
Went after work yesterday starting at 4:30pm. spooked 4 on way in. Sat for 1.5 hours with nothing happening. Went to go check a field edge-had 8-10 birds heading my way-with 4 toms. They got close enough-and the rest is history. Not sure if they would have responded to a call or decoy-but did get the job done. First bird ever. SE Minnesota