One of the most common mistakes of a turkey hunter is calling too loud and too often. Novice turkey hunters are so excited to hear the gobbler answer back that they keep on calling just to hear that the turkey is getting closer.
You need to understand that Mother Nature has the hen coming to the tom. Right away, you are forcing that turkey to move towards the hen, something that is not natural for him. Many times, by calling over and over again, the tom will sneak in without making a sound, surprising the hunter.
Less is more in turkey hunting. Start out with a soft tree call. If you hear the gobbler sound off, then he is coming in right away and fast, so get ready. A few soft clucks as if to say “I’m just waking up” should be next on your list. If I still hear nothing, I try a fly down cackle followed by a soft yelp. Scratching the ground to resemble a bird searching for food should be the icing on the cake. That will convince even the wariest bird that a hen is on the ground.
If you hear a gobble in the distance and he answers one of your calls, then it is time to be quiet. He already heard you and a turkey has an uncanny ability to pinpoint where that call came from. Let him gobble a few more times before you do anything.
If I have a hot tom and he is not coming in any closer, then I like to do a cackle and cup the side of my mouth with my hand. As I call, I turn my head away from where I heard the bird. You want to make the turkey think that the hot hen is going in the opposite direction. I guarantee that any tom will decide to move closer to you and all that is left is to fill out the tag!
Good luck this season and check out more of my turkey tips here.