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Small Game

Turkey Preparation

While some hunters are currently on family vacations, spring break, at Disney or somewhere hopefully warm, we can’t forget that spring turkey season is upon us.  Turkey in most states are still bunched up, unless you’re in the south where the season has started or is about to open.   Now is the time to get ready.

I’ll save my thoughts on scouting for another day, and concentrate here on equipment.   If you’re a gun hunter, your first thought should be on the performance of your shotgun. It is critical that you’re familiar with the way your gun patterns specific loads at 20, 30, and 40 yards. Like me, you’ve probably had comparable loads from different manufactures shoot markedly different patterns out of your gun.  Paper targets, a few boxes of shells, and practice go a long way towards ensuring a successful turkey hunt.

You should next address the calls you’ll be using.  Take inventory of your arsenal and see if you need some new ones.   Is that trusty diaphragm a little worn or stretched out?   If so, it’s time to head down to your favorite sporting goods store (Running’s,Cabelas etc.) to stock up before the mad rush, and to give yourself time to practice with the new call.  Unless you want to be in the dog house better to practice that new call in the back yard.  If you’re trying to get better with a mouth call why not take them with you while driving to work?    

And maybe it’s time to pick out a new decoy.  We all know a Toms eyesight is razor sharp, your decoy should be realistic and in good condition.

Of course, fooling a turkey’s eyesight with a decoy that you want him to see is one thing.  Fooling his eyesight with something you DON’T want him to see is quite another.  That’s why I’m a firm believer in paying close attention to your hunting habitat, and wearing the appropriate camouflage.    In the interest of full disclosure, I’ve been a member of the Realtree Pro Staff for almost two decades, but I was just as obsessed with camo before I joined the fine folks at Realtree.  Camo matters!

Finally, don’t overlook the little things that can make your hunt just a bit more comfortable.  Maybe getting a new turkey vest with better seat cushion will help.  Mine is due for replacement because it feels like I’m sitting on a napkin.  

I hope this helps you with your spring turkey preparations.  As for me, it’s hot and I’m ready for some pool time.  Yes, I’m one of those hunters on spring break in the Florida Keys……


Tim Andrus

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