Just got back from another 3 days hunting in TN. Tried a twist this time in taking my 4 yr old son on his first turkey hunts.
Sat AM was a bust. Misty fog, no gobbling. I did manage to call a lone hen to within 10 yards. My boy had a ball watching her but did end up spooking her eventually. Later that morning I found my gobblers on the opposite side of the farm. They were in a tough place to work without spooking them, so I decided to save them for Sun AM.
Yesterday morning, I took my son and a friend who hasn't killed a bird yet this year. We got set up 130 yards or so from 3 gobblers on the roost and around 15 hens. They were positioned to flydown and head the opposite way, but somehow we managed to call all the hens off the roost right to us. My son did great, never spooked them despite 10 or so being only 3-4 yards away from us. Of course the gobblers came right in. That was the closest I've ever had a LB gobble at me- around 13 yards. Coulda smoked any of them, but we just don't have enough birds for me to shoot a second gobbler this year. I gave my friend the green light to take the 3 yr old bird (the other 2 were 2 yr olds), so my boy got a real show with a successful kill at the end of the show.
I put my brother in law on a bird on another farm I called in opening weekend. He and a friend managed to take that bird Sat AM as well. Nice bird, at least a 3 yr old, possibly a 4 yr old.
This morning I got set up on a bird gobbling on a different farm. Good mature gobble, had him come to me gobbling the whole time by 6:30 AM. I almost took his head off, but he turned out to be a jake. His gobble woulda fooled anyone. I screwed around with him for another 10 minutes soft calling and scratching leaves. He was hammering his head off at 25 yards. I ended up seeing him later that morning on the neighbors farm with 6 hens in full strut tending to them. Kinda sad, probably means all the LB's are already dead there.
Definetly worst year population wise since '93 or so. The only consolation prize is that my neighbors who have slaughtered the birds over the past few years have had the chickens (definetly not turkeys
) come home to roost. No gobbling on their farm at all, no turkeys seen on their farm at all this year. But that's what happens when you kill 10 birds off a place just in one weekend like they did opening weekend last year.
Overall it's still been a good season. I've only had 4 good mornings weather-wise, and all 4 times I've had birds in my lap by 6:30. I'm happy with my one bird, keeps my streak going, and I still managed to get 3 other people their 1st birds of the season. Not to mention some great memories with my son as well.