After previous week and having no luck whatsoever, I was ready to get back in the woods for our annual youth turkey season. Our state has a special season which is one day long so we can take a kid that is under the age of sixteen hunting before everyone has chased the birds all over the place. This year I went with my cousin Greg and his daughter to try and get her first turkey.
He has been getting lots of game camera pictures of birds using his food plots for a couple of months now and it was looking pretty good for her. With the three of us and a camera , we put up a blind and had everything ready to go well before it started getting light. I am glad we were in the blind because I didn’t wear near enough cloths and it was pretty chilly, but luckily it was a lot warmer with all of us packed up in that blind than it was outside. Shortly after the sun started peeking over the top of the trees we heard the first bird of the morning gobble. Then, not long after he gobbled, several more started shimming in with him and I knew it was going to be a great morning. All of the turkeys we were hearing gobble were pretty close to the food plot we were set up in and I felt sure that some of them would head our direction.
The first turkeys that showed up were three jakes that didn’t want anything to do with my Peep n’ Tom strutting decoy, but they sure wanted to pick on the couple of Pretty Penny hen decoys. They hung around for a few minutes and as the big gobblers hit the ground and started getting closer, the jakes began easing their way back out of the field.
Three of the gobblers were at the opposite end of the food plot from where we were set up and gobbling their heads off. They were just inside the woods, and although we couldn’t see them it was sure nice to have them gobbling the way they were. After a little while they stopped gobbling and I don’t know where they went but I figure they must have gotten with some hens and just shut up.
Then another turkey started gobbling to our left and it wasn’t long before he came into the field and started walking away from us. He acted as though he had been spooked but I didn’t know what had spooked him. A couple minutes after he left the field, three hens came out and walked up to the decoys and hung out for a while. That is when we noticed a gobbler strutting just inside the woods at the other end of the field. That sucker finally came into the field and hung up about sixty yards, staying there for about thirty minutes just strutting and looking at my Peep n’ Tom.
After what seemed like forever, the hens started feeding their way out of the field and I just knew he was going to follow them. Just then the wind picked up and spun my decoy around. When the tom saw that movement he broke out of strut and started walking our way. Greg started helping get Ansley’s gun up and in position so she would be ready when he walked in range. When the turkey got to about twenty yards I told them I was on him and to shoot when they were ready. The shot never came and before long he was at twelve yards walking around the decoy trying to pick a fight.
Ansley was having a hard time getting on him because he kept moving. It was a beautiful sight and I was just hoping while she was trying to get a shot at the bird she was paying attention to what was going on. I was wishing it wasn’t youth day and had my bow in my hand because those are the shots you dream of when trying to kill a turkey with a bow, or anything for that matter. After I don’t know how long, she was finally able to get a shot at him but unfortunately missed him. The bird ran about halfway across the food plot and then looked back at the decoy like, “what was that?”
Ansley was pretty upset. We tried to explain to her that everyone misses, and if they haven’t they will if they keep hunting. Then we talked about all of the cool stuff we got to see the bird do and that we would get to hunt him and hear him gobble again another day. That was the kind of bird we love to hunt and hope we run up on a coup le every year because he did everything you want a turkey to do . . . except DIE!!!