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warm spring and effect on birds
Last Post 18 Jun 2012 08:36 AM by Sam Hardy. 22 Replies.
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JustinUser is Offline
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Justin

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23 Apr 2012 07:44 AM

    I have been doing alot of scouting the last few weeks for my up coming spring turkey season.  I have hunted the same property for 15 years and know the land really well.  Every year birds are always in the same places and I have some sure fire places to kill birds.  Except this year,  the birds have not been in  the normal spring spots.   Have any of the rest of you guys seen any thing like this in your areas?  I am thinking the warm March weather has thrown them into some weird pattern.  If any one has hunted last week or starts this week, in the Midwest.  Let me know how the birds are reacting in your area, are they coming to the call, are they henned up,  Just looking for a little heads up before opening day.  Good luck guys.

     

     

    roverboyUser is Offline
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    roverboy

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    24 Apr 2012 10:24 AM
    Its been weird here too. Our season opened on March 31 and the gobbling has been slow. Usually they are still fired up all through April. Around here they are just gobbling a little on the roost and not hardly at all later. Normally my favorite time is late morning but, that's been about useless this season. I've not seen any gobblers in a couple weeks with hens. I've not seen gobblers in fields strutting in a while either. I just don't have a good answer. I hope you have some good luck though.
    Chris LarsenUser is Offline
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    Chris Larsen

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    25 Apr 2012 11:16 PM
    I'll be running birds this weekend in SW Wisconsin. From some of the credible research I've seen on birds, I doubt the weather has changed their breeding cycle very much, if at all. Breeding is controlled mostly by the amount of daylight. However, their winter flocks have probably broken up a little earlier. What has probably changed birds the most this spring is the habitat. I would guess that many of the same areas they typically use this time of year look much different in 2012 than they did in 2011. Should be interesting.
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    JustinUser is Offline
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    Justin

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    26 Apr 2012 06:46 AM
    I start hunting weednesday, and I have been out alot the last few weeks checking fields and looking for patterns. I think the weather had alot to do with the the way things look this year, and alot of that i think is do do with the abundance of green material to eat. I thought thou with the cool down in the weather that maybe birds would fall back into old habits and start using familar fields again. I have just notice that the birds in my area have no pattern, its one field one morning another field the next. The consistency of strutting and feeding zones is not there this year. It will be a new experience this year and something to learn from, if we ever have a 80 degree march again i will know what to expect come spring season.
    JustinUser is Offline
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    Justin

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    27 Apr 2012 01:37 PM
    I aquired some new land to hunt this year, It has not been hunted in probably 25 years. I have not had much time to scout it with season starting in five days. Now I have to decide to give it a shot, or go with the old tried and true places. The lure of the old birds that might live on this property might be to much for me to resist.
    roverboyUser is Offline
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    roverboy

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    28 Apr 2012 08:19 PM
    I'm gonna try it again in the morning and see if I can fool one. I didn't get to go today. They're still gobbling a little around here. Good luck to you Justin. I hope everybody does good this year.
    JustinUser is Offline
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    Justin

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    30 Apr 2012 07:19 PM
    I only one more day till season starts, I always can't wait for spring turkey. I have all my things ready and waiting for Wednesday morning, just hoping the weather man is wrong and we don't get all the rain that's in the forecast.
    Chris LarsenUser is Offline
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    Chris Larsen

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    02 May 2012 02:31 PM
    Any luck today Justin? Beautiful weather after a hard rain last night here in NW Wisconsin. Birds had to be gobbling their heads off this morning.
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    Justin

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    02 May 2012 04:02 PM
    We had an ok morning, saw some birds. They we all to far away and not interested in what I had to say to them. It was actually a pretty quiet morning, we had some killed storms last night and it rained for an hour after the birds left the roost. The only real gobbles we heard were the dock gobbles from the thunder. It was a pretty slow morning. Hopefully therein holds off tonight and it will be abetter day tomorrow.
    JustinUser is Offline
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    Justin

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    03 May 2012 01:20 PM

    We saw a few more birds this morning,  had a few fly down into the field about a hundred yards away from us.  But the three toms already had company and were not interested in coming over.  No matter what we did they would not leave the two three hens they flew down with.  Saw a few more birds in the distance and tried to put the moves on a couple in a large chisel plowed field with no luck.   On the way back to the truck my dad saw a bird sneaking through a oak grove,  it had its head down and was walking away from us.  He went to the right and I went to the left,  the birds only went about ten yards before it disappeared into the briars.  I walked on thinking it was gone, and waiting to  hear dad shot.  Then the bird jumped up behind a down tree behind some briars,  I could make out a beard and the tell tale red head of a tom, when it cleared the brush it turned running away from me.  With out realizing it i pulled up and shot dropping the running bird at about 35 yards with a hevi shot magnum blend.  To my surprise when we walked up to the bird , it was a jake!  About a six inch beard, weighed 18 lbs.  I'm sure it will be delicious.  One of my two tags filled,  I hunt again next week and have my dad and brother in law to help yet also.  I can't complain to much , out of the over twenty five birds i have taken in the last twenty years, this was my second jake, and out weighed my first jake by 1 lbs.,  It was a good day that i got to share with my father, as I get older I begin to realize that spending time in the woods with my dad is the real trophy. 

    JustinUser is Offline
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    Justin

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    04 May 2012 08:01 PM
    another great day today, called in a great tom for my dad today. He dropped a huge tom a thirty seven yards. 23.6 lbs double beards one 10 1/2 inch and another 3 1/2 inch and 1 1/4 inch spurs. We are two for two so far, me and my brother in law go after them again wednesday. Weather should be better next week and a couple more birds should fall to my old reliable mossberg.
    mporterUser is Offline
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    05 May 2012 08:49 AM

       I am from Southern Michigan and I also have noticed a change in the spring turkey activity.  A few gobbles on the roost in the morning and then silence through the rest of the day.  Luckily, I bagged my tom on opening day.  Back in the middle of March during that two-week warm spell, that's when I heard and saw alot of turkey activity.  I think that the hens started sitting early this year.  I hope that this dictates more turkey numbers in the fall and next spring.  This has definitely been a different year for spring turkey hunting.  The late season here in Michigan promises to be a challenging one!  

     

    Happy Hunting,

    M Porter

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    Chris LarsenUser is Offline
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    Chris Larsen

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    06 May 2012 09:51 PM
    Thanks for the reports guys. I hunted last week in SW Wisconsin. We heard a lot of gobbling activity at first light, then the birds did some strutting until around 9 AM. At that point they just kind of milled around for most of the day. You couldn't call to them. If you were sitting where they wanted to go you could kill them but if you were 50 yards off, no dice. Around 5:30 each night activity picked up and gobbling began again. Still, pretty tough to get them to come your way with calls and decoys. If you're still hunting, I would advise you to spend a day or two scouting and then set up EXACTLY where you saw the birds. If you're 50 yards away from the right spot you're not going to kill a bird. "X" marks the spot! They're definitely not going to walk through a forest to get to you. The understory is too thick right now. Use it to hide your advance. Good luck everybody!
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    JustinUser is Offline
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    Justin

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    07 May 2012 06:54 AM

    I will agree with you on being in the right spot,  I think that most of the time you need to be where the birds wanna go.  In my years hunting turkeys it seems like calling a bird in a direction that they are not heading is very difficult.  If its a lone tom in the middle of the day your chances increase drastically, but birds in a group are hard to break up.  Good scouting and having the birds stay to their normal habits make it much easier on the hunter.  The changes in the weather during my season threw a wrench in that for me,  the birds changed there pattern and my scouting went out the window.  Friday was the best day we saw for hunting in my area,  the birds gobbled and stayed out in the fields through out the day.  It was almost like they we happy to see the overcast humid weather go away.  My best advise is to use the days you don't kill a bird to learn what to do the next day,  I saw birds every morning,  they might not have been in range, but everyday we changed our set up, moved just a little until we filled both our tags.  The birds will show you where you should be, you just need to figure out how to get there before they do.  I start hunting again wednesday,  hopefully the birds do see my coming.  I can be very very sneaky.

     

     

    JustinUser is Offline
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    Justin

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    08 May 2012 09:52 AM

    Trying to decide where to set up in the morning,  during my season last week we saw birds everyday on a field that we couldn't hunt.  This season we can hunt that field and now we have not seen birds there in four days.  We hunted one field last week and had not luck now this week there have been birds there the last three mornings.  What do you guys think, should we try the new field that the birds loved last week or go to the field we had no luck on last week?

    JustinUser is Offline
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    Justin

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    10 May 2012 07:53 PM
    weather has changed things for the better, birds are staying out in the fields and strutting. Yet they are still not coming to the call well, I have pretty much stopped calling. A few quiet yelps and that's it, you kinda have to wait for the birds to move in your direction, get out Ahead of them and wait for them to come your way. I think the birds are in odd patterns this year, with all the warm weather. We keep plugging away one of those bird old toms is gonna slip up soon.
    Chris LarsenUser is Offline
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    Chris Larsen

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    14 May 2012 07:54 AM
    Word on the street is you whacked a few. How bout some pics?
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    JustinUser is Offline
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    Justin

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    14 May 2012 07:57 PM

    Here are some pics of the turkeys, from this years season.  I hunt my season, and call them in for my dad and brother in law. 

    JustinUser is Offline
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    Justin

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    15 May 2012 08:37 PM
    Hey, guys I found a farm in area 1, over by darlington, WI. Anyone hunt in that area? I am thinking about buying a extra tag and driving over there Saturday morning and see if I can get my third bird this year.. I don't know if the wife will be happy about it. The farm is a hundred and twenty acres of private land that has not been turkey hunted in over thirty years.
    Chris LarsenUser is Offline
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    Chris Larsen

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    19 May 2012 09:35 PM
    Did you talk the wife into it?
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    JustinUser is Offline
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    Justin

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    20 May 2012 07:12 AM
    Yeah, no go on another season. I tried to talk to her into it but she had Alot of work to do finishing up her masters program for the semester. I had no time to go over there and scout, didn't want to head into it the season blind. I have a go for next year, so I am gonna do some scouting over there and hunt a season there next year. I am hoping to get three seasons in Wisconsin next year and one In Illinios.
    JustinUser is Offline
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    Justin

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    20 May 2012 07:12 AM
    Yeah, no go on another season. I tried to talk to her into it but she had Alot of work to do finishing up her masters program for the semester. I had no time to go over there and scout, didn't want to head into it the season blind. I have a go for next year, so I am gonna do some scouting over there and hunt a season there next year. I am hoping to get three seasons in Wisconsin next year and one In Illinios.
    Sam HardyUser is Offline
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    Sam Hardy

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    18 Jun 2012 08:36 AM
    Hi,
    I agree...it seems when the weather is cooler the month of the opener the birds stay "flocked" up. My experience has been that their much tougher to call in because the "ole boss hen" usally takes the flock with her. Had essentially the same experience last weekend. I just can't get the gobblers to come in and I can't get the hens to respond to my decoys. I think they are already done mating and don't care anymore. But I'm also a newbie to turkey hunting.

    Sam
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