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MT_Sourdough

lesson learned- turkeys and crows.

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For other turkey hunt'n newbies like me who may not already know what I learned the last couple of days.

Simply, while looking for a place to set up, if a couple of crows are yelling at you telling you to leave their area, heed their advice. When Crows establish their territory turkeys stay away. Don't waste your time setting up in the area, keep looking. Took me two days days of listening to angry crows to figure this out. I assume this would apply with ravens and hawks as well.

One more, Harris Hawks hunt turkeys. A big Harris hawk was dropping in on my decoys before it saw me and altered course. I did some quick research and found that Harris Hawks will eat half grown turkeys. My Dave Smith Decoys are about half the size of a grown decoy. I knew bigger hawks and eagles were predators of turkeys, but apparently Harris hawks are as well.

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I was in 5B south on an elk hunt years back. I heard crow, turkey, crow, turkey, crow, turkey and it just kept going. When I tracked them down I found 2 pine trees side by side with 1 bird in each tree. They each sat in their own tree yelling back and forth. My arrival had ho effect. They kept at it as I walked away. I walked till I could no longer hear them and always wondered how long they kept at it and what it was all about.

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I was on a hunt a few days ago and found turkeys and crows together in many areas

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They definitely share some disdain, hence the crow locator call being so effective. However- in the east many places I hunt have resident Canada goose populations and those calls work well also for locators. And I've seen big turkeys and geese chase each other around on small farm ponds.

 

Turkeys will be where you find them. If you aren't hearing birds then look for sign, if you aren't seeing sign, move.

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There were turkeys all around me on the ridge, but they seemed to avoid the draw my blind was set in.

In fact, I stepped outa my truck to the sounds of multiple gobblers. I was dressed in black from head to toe, so I couldn't do anything but get to my blind as fast as possible. My intention was to park 1/4 mile from the draw in which my blind was located. Being only a quarter mile from my blind, I figured I didn't need to take much gear with me. Just needed to get there as quick as possible.

I threw my decoys over my shoulder, grabbed my shotgun and started off in the direction of the blind. With my heart pounding at the excitement created by first gobbles I have heard after a month of searching I was boogeying as fast as I could, Soon it became evident that I had misjudged the distance to the draw and the 1/4 mile I had hoped was actually over a mile.

At some point along the way, it became apparent that a turkey was actually chasing me. The gobbler sounded to be about a hundred yards away and staying at my 4 o'clock as I went. It was at that moment that I realized that the four decoys over my shoulder were bouncing off each other making me sound like a drum section of a High School marching Band. I would have noticed my raucous, but about the only thing I could hear was my chest pounding and my heavy breathing. My old cardiac man 20 minute miler butt was breathing hard and my heart was about to explode when I finally arrived at my blind. That gobbler was still coming, but by the time I got my decoys set and me into my blind, the chasing turkey's gobble started getting further and further away.

Here's the cherry on top of this story, I sat down on my chair in the blind and just then it struck me. I left my calls back at my truck.

For a while I could still hear gobbles along the ridge, but no turkeys would come into this wide shaded draw I was in.

I did go back to my truck to get my calls and I tried for a day to call a turkey into the draw, but no dice.

All the while, those crows kept harassing me. At one point they came in to test my decoys. After a slow approach, they made a short assault on my "leading hen" Dave Smith decoy. After a couple of hits, the crows turned around and started feeding away. They never shut up though.

The next day I tried to stock in on the gobblers. I got within 40 yards of a gobbler moving through the trees. I tried to get in front of him, but he gave me the slip. shortly after, the turkeys went silent.

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Cool story it sounded exciting. I used to carry a decoy around, but I got tired of carrying the extra stuff around. I find it easier just sitting in front of a tree and calling them in.

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