Here's an idea

metalkingdom

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It seems that there's slim pickens in San Diego this year.  I know that lack of rain is probably the main culprit, but I can't help but think about how many jakes get knocked off down there every year.  Just about every report that I hear of from the public spots (last year, too) are of jakes being taken.  Maybe it would be a good idea to let the young ones pass on thru, so maybe they can (hopefully) breed later on down the road.  They just might grow up to be that double-bearded boss that we are all hoping for!  Besides, jakes are so gullible.  It's more fun to play with them with your calls than it is to shoot 'em.
 

Welby

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That's what we do here in MS - and it's enforced by law!

Unlike the four point rule for bucks, the no jakes law is producing positive results and hunters here really like it.  In Mississippi, if it has a beard of less than six inches and/or an uneven tail fan, it's off limits.  As a result, there are now much more 2-1/2 and 3 year old birds running around.  Sure, they are more challenging, but by the same token they are a much more worthy trophy.
 

Whoadog

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 I disagree.  I am no biologist but do not see where this would help,  there are plenty of males that are left to accomplish all of the breeding.  On public land in CA it is extremely hard to kill birds with all of the pressurethey get.  On private land you can control the pressure and the big birds can still be challenging but it is a totally different challenge, you can be much more patient on private land than you can on public with all of the idiots gobble chasing and etc.

Brian
 

metalkingdom

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Whoadog - it's pretty hard to disagree with science and facts.  I don't know if you read the preceding post, but Welby says that the "no jakes" law in MS is WORKING.  I'm sure that it is working in other states as well.  Plus, I'd rather have full grown fans on display.  Wouldn't you?
 

shovelerslayer

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If you talk to the biologist in CA they set the season where they feel most of the hens are bred before season starts.  Save the hens and you have next years birds.  I will pass on jakes if I am having a good year finding birds, but I feel it should be a personal thing.
 

wmidbrook

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Well, this year those hens from Central CA on up weren't fully mated by opening weekend...you can thank that to a late Spring especially from 1000 ft on up.   And I doubt that a CA turkey biologist could hold a candle to MI turkey biologist unless they were from an area with a long history of turkeys...some things can only be learned from years in the field in my opinion.

I'm all for limiting the take of jakes during the Spring Hunt!

Bill
 

Whoadog

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 Of course I would rather shoot a big tom that is easy to answer.  How many hens do you think are bred by Jakes?  My answer would be not very many.  Up in Willits two weeks before the season I seen a huge tom that had over 35 hens with him, I have a picture to prove it, and there was not another male bird around.  I fully understand the three point or better for deer because our deer herd is terrible, on the other hand our turkey populations are through the roof and you are not going to hurt that by killing jakes.  As the saying goes we will agree to disagree.

Brian
 

spectr17

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2 reasons to shoot a jake. If your a new hunter and you've paid your dues for a few years with no luck, finally shooting a jake will make you a life long turkey hunter. I've only met a few who stuck it out for more than 3 or 4 years without a turkey. Why not let the fairly new hunters have a taste of success. Like deer hunters, most new turkey hunters will then want to shoot a longbeard next. The hens are bred in most states by the time the season opens and the boss toms are the ones doing most of the breeding according to research.

Another reason to shoot jakes is the wingbones of a hen and jake make the best wingbone calls. If you can't  fall hunt like in San Diego why not take a jake? Other hunters in many states don't fall hunt when you can take hens so that limits them to jakes and longbeards in the spring.

I've never gotten the whole "Turkeys should be hunted this way" thing. Some say only longbeads by calling them in near is the traditional and ethical way to turkey hunt. From what history teaches us the tradition was any turkey any way by the native americans first. Calling, ambushing, they did whatever worked for them . If you really want a challenge, try stalking and calling turkeys in the fall with a bow. To me, fooling multiple sets of turkey eyes and ears of a flock more intent on feeding is a lot tougher than a horny gobbler in the spring that gives his positon away with every gobble and will come to a call easily.

I know this chafes some of the traditionalists but it's JMHO. <pulling up asbestos undies>
 

Rattler

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 The birds are out there guys.  I have heard MORE gobbles and have seen MORE sign this year than last.  I have seen plenty of hens, too.  I hunt PUBLIC land.  I got drawn at Sutherland (Struck out) but have seen more sign, more hens, and heard more gobbles on BLM turf than I did at Sutherland...fact.  Hang in there...I know I will. You gotta stick to it.  I have never shot a turkey on my couch. of that I am certain.
Good Luck - Rattler
 

metalkingdom

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 I don't think that there is a right or wrong way to hunt anything.  Basically, I'm just talking about San Diego county, and other places where there aren't a lot of birds on public land.  Jakes that are allowed to live will undoubtedly become breeders the following year, at least most of them.  They will also add another 3-4 inches to their beards, which equates to more quality birds on public land.

 If anyone has been turkey hunting for three years and still don't have a bird, then they should probably walk a little further away from their truck.  As for the indian analogy, most indians thrived during their time.  It's not like they just went out and killed whatever they could.  Many native hunters took pride in the fact that not only were they providing sustenance for their tribes and families, but also in the size of their trophies.  Bigger animals have more meat on them.  They also had competition from other hunters who would return home showing off their trophies.  I doubt if the squaws were impressed with 2" beards.

 My secret spot apparently remains a secret (except for the one guy and his son), and I'm headed back there soon.  I'd like to hunt other areas down there (closer to me!) and have a decent chance at an adult gobbler.

 One more thing - I have learned many, many things about hunting in SoCal from this website.  Although I don't have many posts, I've been reading JHP for, I think, three years now.  I appreciate input and opinions from guys like Welby, Whoadog, and Spectr17.  That's why this thread was started.
 

wmidbrook

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I agree.  I'd like to see folks new to hunting turkey have a relatively easier bird to hunt--a jake.  If they can bag one, then the thrill of the take could serve as a motivator for them to improve their hunting skills.

It would be good to allow the take of 1 or 2 Jakes/year in CA (maybe 1 in the Spring and 1 in the Fall).  

I'd like to see the take of Spring Jakes limited to 1 bird.  There'd be a lot more older birds.  There'd be fewer 'no gobbler days.'  Jakes often don't gobble but come right in.  I think it would make hunting on public lands more of a thrill with a lot more gobbling activity.

From a hunting perspective, it would be more of a challenge for those second and third Spring birds.

A bad thing about limiting the take to jakes to 1, is that 'slot limits' can and will lead to game left to rot out in the field because some folks would shoot a button jake mistaking it for a 2 or 3 year old bird.  So, if the old 'greater than 2"' beard rule were applied here in CA, we'd likely find dead, abandoned birds out in the field on occassion.

Bill


(Edited by wmidbrook at 2:14 pm on April 10, 2002)
 

Welby

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If you have more than plenty birds and it's legal, sure, go for it...  I see no problem with it at all.

But....if you don't have as many birds as you think you do and you kill the ones that are easiest to call first (the jakes), then you end up with nothing left but older and nearly uncall-able (and unkillable) turkeys.  Then you do have a mess on your hands and you better not have any qualms with ambushing techniques at that point.

I love to call them, but ambushing, waitin' 'em out, shootin' em on the wing...well that's all fine and good too!  If that's how they want to play, I'll do it....within legal rationale.
 

Rattler

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 M'Tom,
             I understand your point on Jakes...but there are STILL Toms out there...AND it wouldn't surprise me if supplemental plants take off again.  That is, if WE, the hunters keep the pressure on the DFG.  The tree huggers rain of terror is over and it's time T-hunters got what THEY are paying for out here.  Good Luck Out There - Rattler .
 

bohunter7

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I think we have enough restrictions here in California. I say let the jakes get shot if they come in. It should be up to the hunter. The state seems to do very little here to really help the habitat of public land. All they seem to do is raise the fees and collect for our license. If the state would make access a little better on public land and improve the habitat, such as watering areas, the population would increase and the impact could be spread out. After all the work I do just to locate a bird on public, If it gets close enough for a shot, its getting shot. Maybe on my second bird, I'll be a little more picky.
 

spectr17

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Metal,

From the biologists reports, scouting reports from other hunters and my own scouting and the reports from hunters who scored in San Diego, this is a banner year for birds there. Several have claimed it's the most turkeys they have ever seen in San Diego. If you have a public honey hole consider yourself very lucky. It's tough sledding for public land hunting here and in many states.

Jakes may breed the next year but they also may squeezed out by a 3 or 4 year old tom too.

As far as not getting a turkey in 3 years by not walking far enough, that's making a BIG assumption on a hunter you've never met. Let me relate one good example of a turkey hunter I met out here several years ago. This guy was on his 4th year of no tom. He hunted higher and further than most guys I deer hunted with. He learned to call and I could see he really had the true turkey passion. He was a NWTF member and did volunteer work for them. He just couldn't get lucky enough for a shot. We kept on him to keep plugging away and on his 5th and 6th season some of us even called for him to try and break his curse. We called in a couple of toms for him only to have a the bird hang up or a yote blow the setup.

After the 6th year we could see he was about to hang up his calls and go fishing or hog hunting instead in the spring. Since he was hard headed we used that to get him out for his 7th season. He went out of state with a friend and his turkey hunt finally clicked. He called in a jake and shot it at 25 yards. He was ecstatic. Most hunters wouldn't have lasted as long in my opinion as this guy which is my whole point.

Regarding the Indians and their hunting, I guess you've never lived of the land. In my experience from military survival training and surfing the Baja coast on the cheap, when you're looking to fill the pot for supper the beard length or rack size is the LAST thing you're looking at. The fastest and easiest way to get the animal in the pot is what happens. I don't recall any recipes for beard stew or antler souffle' nor do I remember anyone saying "Nah, let that doe go, let's go find a big buck for dinner." There is trophy hunting and I'm sure the Indians did their fare share of that also but meal time meant whatever you could find.

Now let's address what a real trophy turkey is. Monarchs, Sultans of Spring, Bosstoms. I'll let another Mizzurah turkey hunter explain my thoughts on this since he wrote it so eloquently awhile back. Please don't take this post personally, it just helps to point out that many think they are grand callers by taking a bird or two every year when they may have never even matched up against a 3 or 4 year old dominant tom in their hunts. Hopefully all this explains my poiint of some hunt for meat, some hunt for the grand adventure and some hunt for their trophy wall so they can have "Full grown fans" as you call it. To each his own.

Posted by bankwalker in the MDC forum regarding a post by a hunter who suggested he was a great turkey hunter for getting a bird some 25 years in a row.

<font face=arial size=1><blockquote><hr noshade size=1>I think the "short on experience" hits it right on the head. Not necessarily "calling experience", because xx states thats how he does things, but overall experience.

While he states that "I don't shoot hens or jakes", and that he gets at least one and usually two every year, I probably have the reason for that. He goes to the overly vocal bird first, which nine times out of ten will be a two year old. The true dominant birds will usually be far less vocal. Just a gobble here and there because most of the time the hens are roosted within sight of him.

The two year olds will gobble at a truck door closing so calling them is childs play.
So just because he is killing turkeys every year doesn't mean he is hunting them to the potential he could. It's all about the kill to him and not the hunt or he would do a little more scouting and find a true dominant bird and hunt him for days on end, maybe not ever killing him.

I will admit that there have been times that I have hunted the same bird for 6, 8, 10 days in a row with no success, calling OR stalking. Sometimes they just seem to have all the luck. At the point where I get frustrated and need to get some pressure off, I'll sit down across form a two year old bird and watch him come in like he's on a string. NO CHALLENGE. So while you may have numbers, you can't have the wide variety of memories that comes with hunting a bird that is truly the king of his domain. Two year olds are monotonous, predictable and routine. And so, in the manner of which you put down somebody else's manner of "hunting", you are also dull and monotonous.
Just keep huntin' the two year olds and leave the true "kings" to us that KNOW how to HUNT!!!!
<hr noshade size=1></blockquote></font>
 

wmidbrook

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It sure sounds to me like the level of experience bankwaker has attained is definately something to respect and aspire towards :pullshades:

It got me to wondering about a study on hunter's ethics I read up in Washington State that's part of the advanced hunter's education course offered there.  I was wondering if any of you were familiar it.  I think some professor from Princeton wrote it up.

Anyway, in my hazy recollection it went something like this...

There were 4 levels of hunters ethics--
1.  Just get out there and get some meat on the table (survival-like)
2.  Gets out there to enjoy nature and to put some meat on the table
3.  Gets out there to enjoy nature and to bag a trophey....really enjoys the large amounts of field time between having a trophy opportunities
4.  Gets out there to enjoy nature and sometimes even passes up the trophy opportunities 'cause he/she just likes bein' out there so much

If anyone is familiar with the genuine article or something similar, it would be interesting to reflect on it.

Bill
 

metalkingdom

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 I think that the CA hunter safety booklet has the same sort of thing in it.  I guess that I started turkey hunting on level 3.  Just a personal choice.  I feel that the MO hunter's quote would be more valid as part of my argument since I rarely see anyone on public land in SoCal with a two-year or older bird.  It usually takes considerably more scouting and leg work to find an adult turkey here as compared to most other places.  Finding and calling in a jake is a lot easier.  I was just in FL last month for a late season quail hunt and fishing with my dad (I'm an ex-military southern boy myself).  I called in a two-year old while standing in an aluminum boat in the middle of a pond.  Not too much of a challenge just as the MO hunter stated, even though it took 2 hours to get him in.  Try that down in San Diego.

 I hunted 14 times by myself before I bagged my first turkey.  The last nine hunts of that stretch involved me targeting either one of two specific boss gobblers.  After coming off of the roost, they gobbled for a few minutes, and then shut up for the rest of the day.  I watched them feed and prance around in front of me out of shooting range everyday.  I even tried decoys, but that didn't work either.  Needless to say, my season ended with no turkey.  This year, I've been hunting Mr. Doublebeard.  I was hoping that the bird that I took on the opener was him.  He didn't gobble much, and I never saw anything except his spread and head.  Even though he turned out to be a two-year old, I was very happy and thankful to have a nice bird on the table for Easter dinner.

Anywayz, I understand where you jake killers (jj- cheap shot) are coming from.  Spectr17, I'm glad that your friend hung in there.  He's probably taken many nice birds since.  I know how it works.

p.s.  I let small fish go, too!
 

wmidbrook

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Well, I definately swing between a 2 & 3 depending on the hunt.   With turkeys, I've passed on Jakes 'cause that was the thing to do when I belonged to Wilderness Unlimited which is where I got started turkey hunting.  Consequently, I've passed up many jakes but have shot 2+ year old birds.

Deer: on limited-entry or good pivate lands hunts I'm a 3.  Passed up many smaller bucks on a hunt I was drawn for last fall.  But, I took a doe in Wyoming and  Utah meat buck last year so I was a 2 there towards the last of the hunt.  

But, then again, I shot what a lot would consider to be a trophy A zone - just a hair under a 20" spread.  I passed up 5 bucks before taking it.

Elk:  I'd shoot the first legal bull since I haven't bagged one yet but I've only spent about 15 days hunting the critters--haven't had a shot opportunity yet and 10 of those were with a muzzleloader in the soaking wet forests of Washinton.

For turkey's I relegate myself to Wednesday/Friday early morning hunts closeby and trekking for weekend hunts.  I save my time off for deer/elk and family.  If I had more time, I'd probably do the 3+ year old only birds.
 

Whoadog

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 "Jakes often don't gobble", I find this to be the opposite.  I think Jakes gobble more than any of the older toms.  Yesterday in fact I was on private property and had three jakes working and one lone gobbler, about a 9"inch beard, the three jakes would not shut up and gobbler only gobbled twice.  I am not just basing this on yesterday's experience but since I have hunted turkeys this has been my experience.  Is this just me or do others agree or disagree, I would really like to know others experience on this.

Brian
 
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