Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Flying Feathers

The feathers have been flying since the opening of spring turkey season.  On opening day, I headed out determined to film a solo hunt.  Sunrise brought gobbles echoing from the timber and I knew it would only be a matter of time before birds were in front of me.  Shortly after daybreak, a nervous hen crossed my path followed by a pair of vocal strutters.  After passing on a few nice birds, the long beard I was after made his grand entrance into the field.  He spotted my Dave Smith Jake Decoy and was determined to show the juvenile his dominance...big mistake on his part!

Later in the day, I received news from Derek that his little sister Katy had put the smack down on a couple of thunder chickens!  Two birds, one shot!!!    

The next day, news comes from the northeast that a couple more birds have been fatally deceived by a Dave Smith Jake Decoy!  Under the watchful eye of Jim Browning, Colson Browning took a huge Eastern gobbler!  

My good friend Peter (proud father) had this to say about the two day hunt:

"The first bird he shot came into very quickly in a ½ strut to the Dave Smith Jake decoy.  He stood behind the decoy pecking it in the head and bullying him with chest bumps.  Grandpa had much concern that Colson was going to blow a fist sized hole through his decoy, but Colson displayed patience and waited.  We got a good show until the gobbler finally moved to one side and Colson rolled him at 10 yards.  After close inspection, we found where the DSD Jake did incur some collateral damage with a stray pellet or two.  However, the decoy is still in good shape and will continue fooling gobblers. Colson's first bird had a 10.5 inch beard, 1.5 inch spurs, and approximately 26 lbs.  Colson, Grandpa Browning and I were all super pumped.
After a night of hotdogs, marshmallows, and approximately 100 card games of “crazy 8’s” we tried it again the following morning.  6 jakes showed up around 7:00am and they all got together in a tight wad it looked like Colson could roll all 6 with one shot.  We waited and they broke up and began milling around.  They were all very close but the shooting sticks were set up to shoot in one direction and the birds weren’t in the right “window”.  Finally a Jake walked around into the “death zone” and Colson rolled him at 6 yards.  Again, there were many high 5’s and fist-pumps then many celebratory grape pops downed. I don’t normally endorse hunting products, but since last year and counting the two birds Colson shot, 23 turkeys have been killed over our DSD Jake! It has been incredible to watch the way birds respond to that decoy."  

I cannot wait until the Governor's Annual One-Shot Turkey Hunt next week, we have been letting a couple of our fields rest to increase the odds of putting our hunters on birds .  Recent scouting trips indicate there should be several mature birds to choose from...if they will cooperate!  The Hunt kicks off Thursday, April 14th in El Dorado,KS.  
Trailcam pic from last week

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