The king gobbler was close, real close, well within the effective range of my gun. To my horror, I could not see him because of the bank in front of me. The king gobbler never showed his face, only his hens. Heartbroken, for two hours as the morning sun beat down on me, my face-paint began to sweat and run in streaks down my face as if I were crying silent tears knowing I’d been bested by a bird whose head is no larger than a baseball. I could hear him spitting and drumming no more than 20 yards away from us just to tease me. Finally catching a glimpse of him strutting 80 yards away, he was every bit the king of the roost I had envisioned him to be. He took his hens away, and our time was up.
Ahhhh turkey hunting. Dealing with the Sultans of Spring has been known to drive more than one hunter mad over the course of time. As hunters we are always trying to unlock the secrets to these wiry birds. Brent Burke of Country Life Outdoors sat down and talked turkey hunting in an effort to help unravel the frustrations which surround this spring time ritual.
Turkey hunting is a great hunt to introduce youth and adult hunters alike to the culture of hunting because of the vocalized action which can hook even the most doubting of people. Burke says the best thing for youth and new turkey hunters to understand is, “Don’t over call.” Listen to real hens in the woods and understand how they talk. They are not hammer yelping the entire morning away. When working a gobbler, keep calling sweet but do not overwhelm the gobbler. Burke and the rest of the Country Life Outdoors crew have young kids they are introducing to hunting. I asked Burke what his advice is to other parents and mentors when taking young kids hunting.
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