As turkey season approaches, it is time to start making plans and preparing for the hunt.
Assuming you aren’t Jed Clampett who sits in the woods with a double barrel until something comes along, you have to decide where and how you want to hunt this year. You may want to place bait to help strategically route a flock of turkey, or at least go stalk them before the season starts to have an idea of where they roost and feed this year in the area you plan to hunt.
Since an avid hunter likely uses either a pump action or semi-automatic shotgun, you’ll want to make sure it’s cleaned, properly choked, and in good working order to prevent a failure in the field. But, that’s not all you need to keep in mind — below are some tips on how to get the most out of this season.
It’s always important to remember that although the basics of hunting law remains consistent, there can be nuances between states and changes from last year, so it’s always important to check local laws before starting to hunt. You need to make sure your license is still valid and you have your turkey tags before ever going out in the field. Shotguns and bows are the methods used to hunt turkey. Daily bag limits are something to always be aware of, along with using the proper shot size. An aspect often overlooked is what state law says about how long bait has to be cleared before an actual hunt takes place, usually about a week or two.
Things can get even more complicated when you want to bring company.
Every hunter knows this story: a friend wants you to take them but they have neither a license nor a weapon. You want to take them because everyone should know the basics, but you can’t because you hunt within legal parameters. People suggest by hunting on private land you don’t have to follow regulations, and nothing is further from the truth.
It’s important to remember people who hunt illegally rarely get caught in the field, but you have to transport and store the meat after the kill, and you really don’t want someone to have reason to mention your name if they get caught at some later date with unlabeled or tagged wild turkey.
The idea of hunting is that you harvest the meat. As a hunter, you already know how to do that concerning tracking and cleaning the animal. What makes turkey hunting such a challenge is the means by which you produce the kill. It requires a highly accurate head shot because you don’t don’t want to eat around shotgun pellets. It’s a point of pride that you know how to feed your family, surpassed only by teaching your children the skills you’ve acquired over the years.
Have fun and enjoy the season, but stay safe and follow applicable local laws. Remember, hunting is about enjoying nature and becoming familiar with how the animal acts, if you just enjoy shooting there are gun clubs and ranges for that. Hunting is a fun and fulfilling pastime and sport when conducted properly.
~ Firearm Daily