Tips for a new turkey hunter?

thatcsguy1

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Hello everyone. My brother and I have been into archery for a while and decided to take a crack at turkey hunting. We have the May season coming up in New Hampshire and we are just about ready except for the classic hunter problem- where are all the animals going to be?! We have been looking at the Fish and Game website here, and it seems to show that the highest turkey harvesting exists in the towns around Concord. Okay, well, that's still a lot of area to find a place to go. So my question to you guys is, where should we start for finding a good location. Should we just take a shot in the dark and go somehwere and learn from our mistakes? Call FIsh and Game for recommendations? Find some more online resources to study ideal locations? Any other tips you would give to a newbie? Thanks!
 

mowbizz

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Take a shot in the dark and make a plan...hunting is not always about killing...birds are everywhere in NH but very unpredictable.
Find backwoods fields or remote powerlines and listen for telltale sounds that turkeys are present...get landowner permission if you are scouting unfamiliar places. Obey all the laws pertaining to buildings and roads.
Enjoy the outdoors and don't expect immediate success...what you learn will always be retained and will arm you for future hunts.
Who knows...you might set up somewhere and have beginner’s luck?
 

mowbizz

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You could scrape some $$ together and hire a guide...immediate tips and lessons and a great possibility for a Tom!
 

NH Hunter

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I would check power lines near where you live. Get up early in the morning and listen. Also, turkeys don't just live in fields. Find some state forest that is near you. Go there in the mornings and evenings. Listen for gobbles in the morning and roosting gobbles at night. One rule of turkey hunting when it comes to fields. If you've seen those birds, someone else has seen them as well. Usually a lot of someones.

then comes the courtesy issues.... if you see a truck some place, just because you scouted it don't think you'll go on the other side of the road, loop around their calling etc. They got up earlier than you. Plain and simple go some place else. That's why it's important to have at least a half dozen spots scouted.
As for calling. Start with a box call. Its the easiest. You already have a partner, Take turns calling. Slate calls are easy. Buy a mouth call and practice in your truck. Watch some videos as to what it should sound like.
 

thatcsguy1

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I would check power lines near where you live. Get up early in the morning and listen. Also, turkeys don't just live in fields. Find some state forest that is near you. Go there in the mornings and evenings. Listen for gobbles in the morning and roosting gobbles at night. One rule of turkey hunting when it comes to fields. If you've seen those birds, someone else has seen them as well. Usually a lot of someones.

then comes the courtesy issues.... if you see a truck some place, just because you scouted it don't think you'll go on the other side of the road, loop around their calling etc. They got up earlier than you. Plain and simple go some place else. That's why it's important to have at least a half dozen spots scouted.
As for calling. Start with a box call. Its the easiest. You already have a partner, Take turns calling. Slate calls are easy. Buy a mouth call and practice in your truck. Watch some videos as to what it should sound like.
Thank you for your help. I keep seeing online posts about power lines and open fields being a good place for turkeys. What is it about those kind of places that attract the turkeys?
 

longbow

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Thank you for your help. I keep seeing online posts about power lines and open fields being a good place for turkeys. What is it about those kind of places that attract the turkeys?
Gobblers like to strut out in fields. Turkeys like to feed on the seeds, grasses and bugs in the fields.
 

NH Hunter

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Thank you for your help. I keep seeing online posts about power lines and open fields being a good place for turkeys. What is it about those kind of places that attract the turkeys?
Find state forrest and hunt woods birds if you want to avoid the crowds, or find area that has fields, but also a lot of wooded area. find some logging areas. Bugs, and seeds are in cuts too, and they are open for strutting.
 

sneaky_pete000

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Pick a spot, get there before daylight, walk up on a hill and just listen. When you hear a gobble, walk toward it, then listen more. Keep walking until you THINK you're 150yrds from him. Then sit down, get ready, and try some calling.

I'm no expert, and I actually learned a ton about turkey hunting from the guys on here, but I was overthinking it. Lots of guys are really proud of their calling abilities, but in my experience, it doesn't take great calling to get the right tom to come in.
 

longbow

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I'm no expert, and I actually learned a ton about turkey hunting from the guys on here, but I was overthinking it. Lots of guys are really proud of their calling abilities, but in my experience, it doesn't take great calling to get the right tom to come in.
I think a couple of soft clucks or yelps on a push button box call, used sparingly, will work as well as anything.
 

sneaky_pete000

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I think a couple of soft clucks or yelps on a push button box call, used sparingly, will work as well as anything.
I agree completely, on the right bird. On the wrong bird, only the most experienced turkey hunters will get a chance at it - and to become one of the most experienced turkey hunters, you have to accrue experiences. So, here's my step by step guide to a new turkey hunter on how to be humbled by a bird with a tiny brain.

1. Go out to a spot (Maybe find some edge habitat, or mixed age forest) an hour before sunrise and just listen.
2. If you don't hear gobbles, go somewhere else. If you do, walk toward the sound until you *think* you're under 150yrds from it.
3. Sit down with a big tree at your back (both camo and safety) and call sparingly. (See Longbows comment above)
4. Don't move.
5. Don't move anything but your eyeballs.
6. Don't move
7. Even if he's not gobbling, resist the urge to move.
8. He WILL see you before you see him if you're moving, so don't move.
9. Only move if you hear his gobble and its farther away.

The experienced hunters on here will have a thousand edits to the above, and they'll all be correct. However, over-analyzing is what killed me in the beginning. Once I stopped being afraid of blowing it, and I stopped worrying about a million tiny things, I gained a ton of interactions with toms and now I'm in the game every single time.
 




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