Change your mind: turkey hunting is the best way to introduce new hunters

Imagine it’s Saturday night. You and your friends are dressed to nine. You’ve all spent a lot of time getting ready, strutting in front of the mirror. You smell good. You look nice. More importantly, you feel good. You’ll be hitting the bars, with one goal in mind: to catch the sexiest guy or girl on the dance floor. If you’ve planned things out well, your girlfriends are ready to come up with an excuse if the wrong person starts taunting you. Or maybe your buddy is ready to play Goose with your Maverick if a lady’s buddy just won’t let you bring your A-game.

Okay, now imagine I’m not talking about hitting the club. I’m really talking about the turkeys. Because it turns out that spring turkey season is like a night on the town. It will take strategy, and maybe a winger. And it will be a lot of fun.

New York Turkey’s opening on May 1 will mark my third season of turkey. And to say I’m excited about it is an understatement. I am 45 years old and I am married with children. I’m so far from enjoying a night on the town with the guys that it’s best not to think about it. And that’s why I love turkey hunting so much. It really brings back the thrill of “the hunt” in a way that deer hunting does not.

Read more : What New Yorkers Say When They Find Out I’m a Hunter

Now I know turkey hunting can be tough. But if you’re looking to mentor a new adult hunter, turkey hunting is definitely the way to go. Do not mistake yourself. Deer hunting is awesome. There is a lot to learn and there is plenty to have fun with. But turkey hunting is a whole different monster, and one that can easily get a new hunter hooked. Listen to me.

Turkeys are in your league

My very first hunt was a deer hunt. I had no idea what I was doing. I didn’t shoot anything. Still, I enjoyed the experience of being in the woods. Before the start of the season, however, I had admitted to my friends and family that I didn’t know if I would be able to take the shot. I’m serious. Back then, if a deer came within 20 yards of me, I really couldn’t tell you if I would be able to draw my bow and arrow. I was so engrossed in learning about the whitetail deer, its habitat, and perfecting my archery skills that I didn’t even wonder if I would be able to take an animal’s life or no.

The next spring turkey season was fast approaching and I was lucky to have a mentor in my buddy Anthony. I was excited. But mostly, I felt confident that I could take the hit. The idea of ​​harvesting a turkey was not an ethical dilemma for me. I mean… who is do not familiar with turkeys? Some people see deer and immediately think of Bambi. But the turkeys? We cut them up on our big vacations and eat overpriced drumsticks while strolling through our favorite theme parks. Ultimately, it might be easier for a new hunter to pull the trigger on a familiar turkey than a cute, furry deer. This novice hunter can easily make the connection between seeing a bird in the distance and escorting it to the dinner table.

Bar Hopping gives you options

During my first turkey season two years ago, Anthony and I rode six miles and visited four different public places, and it all culminated in a chance encounter with three jakes. I was able to close the deal with archery where I had to maneuver around my mentor AND shoot over a low rock wall. But I did it and it’s my best shot yet. (I brag about it all the time.)

With deer hunting, there is a lot of pre-hunting work that needs to be done to make success even a remote possibility. Because short of spotting and stalking, deer hunting requires a lot of sitting, waiting, and hoping that all the spotting and strategizing you’ve put in place will come to fruition. With turkey hunting, if you have an idea of ​​where they hang out, you can go to them. Think about it. When you go to a club where the women aren’t interested or the guys aren’t attractive, what do you do? You abandon it and head for the next hotspot. The same goes for turkeys. You could hit half a dozen spots in a single hunt if you wanted to, but you can’t exactly move your tree six times in one morning. This run-and-gun action keeps new hunters on their toes and in the game.

You can learn to sound (almost) like Beyonce

Remember that scene from Jerry Maguire, the one where Tom Cruise realizes how much he loves Renee Zellweger and runs to her house and gives that heartfelt speech? Don’t guys in movies like that know exactly what to say at exactly the right time? Well, that’s what turkey call sounds like. From my perspective, calling turkeys is the best part of turkey hunting. It’s really about knowing what to say at the right time.

And this very thing offered me some initial challenges. Until recently, I didn’t know that female turkeys often travel to male turkeys when males gobble, or hens and toms meet in between. So how do you get a cat to come when he expects all the ladies to come to him?

Calling Turkey is an art. Just as there is a dance for every song, there is a call for every situation. You literally defy nature when you try to bring a tomcat to you. So you have to train – train to be the turkey, that is. Are you really going to hit the dance floor doing the running man (or whatever dance kids do these days) not knowing if you’re really good at it? I hope not.

You can “hunt” all year round

I’m not sure of your condition. But in New York, there are two turkey seasons: one in the spring, the other in the fall. But if you’re really into it, turkey hunting (and cooking) is a year-round activity. There’s so much to do, and it’s all the more fun. From learning how to set lures to practicing your turkey calls, there’s so much to do all year round, and that makes it even more fun. If turkey hunting is all you do, you have more than enough to keep you busy. Did you know that there are even contests dedicated to the quality of your turkey call? I am a competitive person. So you know I’m all-in.

Here’s another way to think about it: My first turkey hunt was when I experienced my only hunt to date. That was two years ago, and it was so great that I still brag about it. (Did I mention I killed a turkey?) This single hunt sustained me through seasons where I didn’t complete a tag. It made me a hunter.

Now it’s your turn. Go out and show off your things.