Fall Turkey Strategies

BradCa

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How do you guys hunt turkeys in the fall? I haven't had any luck in the fall, but I've only tried it once.
 



wvhunter

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Depends on how your season is setup. In WV the fall season is either sex, so the best way is to cover alot of ground and find a flock of hens/birds of the year. Then run at them, yell whatever and bust up the flock. Setup in the same general area and do some keekee's, old hen clucks, etc. The birds will be wanting to get back together and most of the time you will be able to bring birds back to you. A busted up flock of young birds will answer almost anything and are a blast to hunt.

Calling in a gobbler in the fall is much tougher. Most of the time they are in groups of gobblers and don't mind running alone so busting the group up doesn't help much. But calling the same as you do in the spring will sometimes bring in the gobblers but they don't normally respond nearly as well in the fall.

Though 1 of my best gobblers I took in the fall by spotting a group of longbeards in a field feeding. I watched them for a while and headed to the area they were feeding towards and managed to bust one as they came back into the timber. Never took a call out of my pocket that day.

Good luck!
 

IBAfoo

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Hey Brad,

I've only been out in the fall a couple of times. Usually that time of year I am simulating a duck hunter in November out in a rice field somewhere.

First thing I noticed, hunting in the fall where I had hunted in the spring, is that the circle you can see around you is 2-3 times as far because the leaves are all gone and the grass is down. I set up one place you can usually see about 30 yards in most directions, and I could see over 100. Seems obvious, but it really struck me when I was out then that the whole environment is really different.

This means that sound will carry a lot farther. A soft yelp will reach out a long ways in November. If you think you can hear far in a quiet April wood, go out in November. You can hear oak leaves hit the ground.

And it means there will be a lot less cover, so that might change how you set up. I'll use a pop blind when I can, but there is less cover to make in impromptu blind out of.

Second thing, the whole call in a gobbler with yelping is pretty much not working. The birds are in big flocks, often by sex and age. Groups of hens, groups of gobblers, groups of jakes, that sort of thing, although I have seen massive flocks of over 100 with all kinds of birds in them.

I have had success twice.

Once, a guide took two friends out near where he knew the birds would fly up to roost. About 3:30 pm, in they walked, and some of them flew in. Two guys got two jakes in 15 minutes. So, if there is a roost area you know of, and they come in before 4pm that will give you some chance.


The other time, I just knew the area, and knew that I had seen birds walk through there at least once a day, so I just set up my pop up blind at noon and about 3:15, in walked about 18 jakes. Actually, they were 70-90 yards away, and I did use a glass slate to yelp louder than I normally would. Jakes act just like teenage boys. The all stopped and started to look around. I yelped again, and they decided to come take a look. The walked up to about 35 yards and all 18 of them stood around trying to figure out what to do next so I had time to pick out a nice one.

And then I figured out another thing, because two other guys were out within 2 miles of me in the same area. I was the only one who even saw turkeys. When they are in big flocks, it is much more likely to be an all or nothing deal.

There is the old tactic of scattering a flock, but you have to find one first. Personally, once I find a flock, I would prefer to figure out which way they are going and try to get in front of them.

If you are hunting somewhere you know, and have some idea where birds hang out, then hunt there. If you are hunting in a new place I would prepare to have a learning experience and hope you get lucky.

Fall hunting is fun, but it's not near the adrenaline of a spring hunt with gobbling and strutting happening. And I have never had to face the thing about shooting a hen. I'm not sure that if hens walked into a set up that I would shoot one.

Good luck.
 

spectr17

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Scattering them can sometimes work but it really puts them on guard from experience. I'd rather work a calm bird anytime. Birds

Learn how to do a kee kee run on a mouth call. Basically it's the call of the young turkeys that other turkeys will respond too, especially momma. Here's a link to a kee kee run on our turkey page here. http://www.jesseshunting.com/sounds/keekee-mouth-1.wav

You need to find a mouth call that can do high pitch kee kees like the little turks do. I usually go through my mouth calls from the spring and find a couple that will do high pitch kee kees.

Fall birds are usually more vocal as they travel together in bigger groups while feeding. Glass and listen to find them or look for where they are scratching. That many birds can tear up a hillside like hogs do.
 


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