Sunday, July 29, 2007

The Strut Zone

For spring turkey hunting, get out there early, before daylight. If you've put them to bed the night before, you'll know which tree they're roosting in. If not, just use a locator call such as a hoot owl and you can get them to gobble before they fly down. Start walking toward the sound of the gobbles, but be careful not to go in too fast or you'll be spotted for sure. A turkey can see you long before you can see it most of the time. Remember, a turkey has extremely keen eyesight and is always on the lookout for any sign of danger. It takes some time, but eventually it's possible to judge your distance from the tom by the loudness of his gobble. Often times, it is a nearby hen that will spot you and sound the alarm, warning others which quickly leave the area. If you get close enough without spooking him, then you've made it to his strut zone. Here, the big tom will puff up and fan out his tail feathers, strutting back and forth to round up the hens. You can't always call a gobbler out of this zone. It is more natural for the hen to go to the tom, not the other way around. Depending on the terrain, sometimes you even have to crawl on your belly to get close enough to take this shot.

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