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Scouting for Wild Turkey
Last Post 12 Jan 2010 01:10 AM by ujoutdoors. 9 Replies.
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08 Sep 2008 12:16 AM

    Before the season, I usually scout my turkey hunting grounds for signs of birds. I look for scratches and forage, as well as the birds themselves being sure to not alert them to my presence. If I am able to locate some of their roosting locations, I will often plan my opening day approach. Turkey often roost near water sources, so I look for droppings in/near large trees next to creeks and ponds. I just make sure that I never call turkey before the season starts, Thurkey are very wise to the sound of your calls and will sometimes desensitize themselves if they hear it enough. Especially if they bag you and associate it with a human.  Does anyone have any additional scouting techniques other than watching the birds roost and picking them off the next morning?

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    08 Sep 2008 08:29 AM
    I love the water tip. I never thought about it but it seems to me that some of my best spots are near water. I'll have to remember that for new areas I am scouting.
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    08 Sep 2008 03:05 PM
    I like to drive some of the backroads near dusk and glass the woods and field edges. Sometimes you can get a good idea of roosting locations from this. I have even had the gobble at me by slamming the car door on some back country roads after dusk.
    As a matter of fact... I do hunt like a girl!
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    08 Sep 2008 09:18 PM

    Driving the back roads only frustrates me because I see tons of game but don't have permission to hunt. It is fun though, in fact I did that earlier tonight and saw about 20 turkey with poults.

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    08 Sep 2008 09:52 PM

    Around these parts we hunt a lot of "big woods". Turkeys have a pretty big range and old hunters claim if you find a  flock of turkey in a certain spot today, then in 7 to 9 days, the flock will be there again. The spots I've hunted in the past seems to lend itself to that fact...to a degree. Once I have figured their direction of travel, it's pretty easy to figure just where they should be from day to day as the make their circle, or loop through their range.

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    09 Sep 2008 01:13 AM
    I try and drive around some bigger blocks of forest (Public Hunting Grounds) at dusk and stop get out and call. It seems to work pretty well.
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    09 Sep 2008 09:30 PM

    Sounds like, unlike most of you, my scouting is confined to "poking around" IN the turkey woods. With the truck parked at the property gate.

    In scouting for my spring turkey season , I check field edges, logging roads looking for tracks and wing drag marks along with dust bowls.

    In the fall, I hit the woods, checking the hardwood ridges,road beds, creek bottoms and I'm looking for scratching.Turkeys love creek bottoms full of Beech Trees and any acorns that are hitting the ground.  It's pretty easy to tell where a flock of turkeys have feed along.

    In either case it's eyes only as I never take a turkey call in the woods unless it's killing time.  Do like to have a good set of "Walkers Game Ear Muffs" with me at fly-up/flydown time.... if I'm out at that time

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    04 Mar 2009 09:50 AM
    From my past experiences, the best way to scout turkey is to be out in the woods. I definitely agree with some of you that say driving roadsides and spotting turkeys is very exciting. But it's one thing to know where the turkey is from the road, where turkeys are used to seeing humans, than to actually be able to get to them.

    What I have done in the past and it had definitely given me results, six toms in six years, is to literally go hunting without a gun or calls within two or three weeks prior to the season that you draw. Being out in the woods, sitting near places you had planned to in the first place and just using the good ol' set of eyes to see patterns. I don't call at all, because of the reason that many people have stated before. Turkeys are smart enough to associate a human call compared to a actual hen call, so the less chance for the gobblers to hear my sorry excuse for a call the better.

    I like to write down if I see a turkey or flock of turkeys, where I saw them, with of without hens, what time, the weather, etc. In the past few years I've been able to see patterns on different parts of the land I hunt.

    This is great because if opening day comes and it's windy and cold, I can simply look in the journal to see where the turkeys seem to move during that whether, and so on.

    This is just what has been successful for me in the past but I really don't see how it couldn't be effective anywhere there's another crazy person chasing those gobblers!
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    08 Jan 2010 12:28 AM
    Hunting Nut is right on here. Get out in the woods and find the travel routes. Turkeys use the same paths to get from the roost to feeding areas. Keeping a log with conditions is a great idea as well. Turkeys have favorite roost spots based on wind and weather. If you see something that looks like a deer trail but has brush or trees hanging too low for a deer pass through, it's most likely a turkey trail. If you shoot a bird, check it's crop. You'll find out what the main food source for birds in that area is.
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    12 Jan 2010 01:10 AM
    Probabley the last thing I want to do is scout for a turkey. There are turkeys everywhere in my area. what I do is scout for a place where no one else goes. The turkeys will be there.

    Uncle John
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