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On the roost

Few quick questions for all you veteran turkey hunters

What time do turkeys start gobbling in the morning?,

When can you start getting them to respond to shock gobble tactics?

What time do turkeys generally fly down?

Replies

  • ShineShine Posts: 837 Officer
    They can start gobbling at civil dawn and go all the way to an hour or so after sun up before letting out the first peep. Most of the time, normal cool blue sky morning, right around sunrise. If it is cold, rainy, foggy, they will go later. Solid overcast sky, somewhat later. Hard wind or hened up, may not gobble at all.

    They will gobble a lot on the two major peaks of the cycle, generally first part of the season and the very last. Often will be a lul in the middle of the season where they don’t gobble too much. But, the cycles can be unpredictable – so you just have to hunt when you can hunt.

    Birds that have been “bumped” repeatedly by hunters while on the roost will often minimize gobbling.

    Now with all that, each area can be different – subspecies are different. Some places birds are gregarious and bold. Others stealthy and reserved. Learning what is normal in your area is important – and assumptions can be dangerous.


    I will use a locator call first thing in the morning. Then put it up. They will respond when they are ready and if you know you are close to a bird – don’t use it as he may get stressed and fly off. Birds will usually fly down when they can clearly see what is below them and that it is safe. About the same time as you can see well. But, if the bird is stressed – not trusting what is around – ie, a hunter beating the crap out of a box call. The bird may sit and watch from the tree. Same may happen if there are predators around. Long story short, just don’t expose yourself to his visual position – assume he is up the tree and looking for you.

    Last, if you get too close, even when its totally dark (like right under him), he is likely to get nervous. And once there is enough light for takeoff – you get one loud, very pissed off gobble and he will take to air and that is the end of that.
  • BnTBnT Posts: 6,644 Admiral
    This morning one started gobbling on the roost at 6:50, Gobbled about 20 times then went quiet all morning after he flew down at 7:20
    "Give a man a fish and feed him for a day... Don’t teach a man to fish…and feed yourself. He’s a grown man. And fishing’s not that hard"
    gandrfab wrote: »
    Sharky is always clocky, bnt is sometimes sharky,
    sharky is sometimes bnt, but bnt is never clocky
  • flydownflydown Posts: 6,464 Admiral
    I have had them gobble as early as 15 minutes before civil twilight, but typically they start around 30 minutes before sunrise.
    DYING for me was the most HE could do. LIVING for HIM is the least I can do
  • james 14james 14 Posts: 3,084 Moderator
    Average for me seems to be about 30 minutes before sunrise time with flydown around sunrise.
  • JonsredfishinJonsredfishin Posts: 2,184 Captain
    james 14 wrote: »
    Average for me seems to be about 30 minutes before sunrise time with flydown around sunrise.

    X3, as soon as you see blue in the east.
    One president put a man on the moon.
    Another president put a man in the Lady's bathroom.
  • Panhandler80Panhandler80 Posts: 8,347 Moderator
    I've only been twice, but on both Saturdays mine started gobbling almost an entire hour before sunrise. One morning was 100% humidity into a steam like fog and HOT, and last Saturday was low humidity, clear skies, slightly cooler and windy as all get out. I guess my birds are of the bold variety! Lucky me, I reckon.

    Went out there today at noon and poked around a little bit. Still good traffic in my two normal spots. Going to do the same thing as last time, hunt one spot and try to call in, and then deer hunt that other crossing once they go quiet.

    We'll see how it goes. If I shoot another one, I'd like it to be better than my last one (17-18 lb bird, 8" beard and 1" spurs).

    Speaking of that... I have read that beard length really doesn't necessarily correlate with age, but that spurs really do. Proble is, spurs are pretty hard to size up at distance, so if yo have a solo tom, how do you field judge other than looking at beard?
    "Whatcha doin' in my waters?"
  • BnTBnT Posts: 6,644 Admiral
    I've only been twice, but on both Saturdays mine started gobbling almost an entire hour before sunrise. One morning was 100% humidity into a steam like fog and HOT, and last Saturday was low humidity, clear skies, slightly cooler and windy as all get out. I guess my birds are of the bold variety! Lucky me, I reckon.

    Went out there today at noon and poked around a little bit. Still good traffic in my two normal spots. Going to do the same thing as last time, hunt one spot and try to call in, and then deer hunt that other crossing once they go quiet.

    We'll see how it goes. If I shoot another one, I'd like it to be better than my last one (17-18 lb bird, 8" beard and 1" spurs).

    Speaking of that... I have read that beard length really doesn't necessarily correlate with age, but that spurs really do. Proble is, spurs are pretty hard to size up at distance, so if yo have a solo tom, how do you field judge other than looking at beard?

    Look for a full fan. That normally shows a mature gobb.
    "Give a man a fish and feed him for a day... Don’t teach a man to fish…and feed yourself. He’s a grown man. And fishing’s not that hard"
    gandrfab wrote: »
    Sharky is always clocky, bnt is sometimes sharky,
    sharky is sometimes bnt, but bnt is never clocky
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