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>>DANIEL: Chasing turkeys is a fun, exciting hunt.

>>DANIEL: Today I want to take time to share how hunting strategies can change through a single day.

>>DANIEL: During the mornings, toms are gobbling on the roost. They’re communicating with hens. And once they hit the ground, they’ll often gobble until those hens come to them and then things can be pretty silent.

>>DANIEL: Once that tom has hens around him, it can be difficult to locate him by gobbling. He doesn’t need to gobble because he has the hens right there, and even if you can see that tom, it can be difficult to call him within range because remember he’s wanting that hen to go to him.

>>DANIEL: Putting all that together, creating a strategy for hunting the early morning is often getting as close to the roost tree as you can, so when that tom hits the ground, you’re kind of right there in the mix of things as he starts calling his hens to him.

>>DANIEL: Let’s take that a step a further. If you know where that tom is going – maybe it’s a strut zone or a feeding area or you’re simply between the tom and the hens – that can be a great location to set up.

>>DANIEL: Sometimes you can go in cold, and you just get in the right spot at the right time, and you can have a great hunt, and other times it takes a bit of scouting to find where those toms are roosted and where they want to go.

>>DANIEL: Scouting could be roosting birds – listen for ‘em to gobble on the limb – the afternoon before you hunt. It could also be using trail cameras to find out how those toms, and even hens, are using the area you plan to hunt.

>>DANIEL: If your early morning hunt doesn’t pan out – that tom gets a few hens with him and they get where they want to go – it may be a while before you can really work that tom, and that’s when you need to change your strategies.

>>DANIEL: As the morning progresses, that tom may breed a few hens. They may break off to go nest, and other hens that haven’t been bred, well, they may break off, go bug elsewhere.

>>DANIEL: When that tom’s alone, he can be more responsive to calling because he’s now searching for more hens.

>>DANIEL: Finding a lonely longbeard or lonely bachelor group during the mid-morning/early afternoon, it can result in some great hunting action.

>>DANIEL: The key to midday hunts is locating a tom. Now there’s several ways to do this. One way is simply by listening.

>>DANIEL: Once those lonely toms start looking for another hen, they’re gonna start gobbling again. Now they may not be as aggressive as when they were right there on the roost, but every now and then you can hear a gobble. You can cut the distance and create a hunting strategy.

>>DANIEL: When you’re trying to listen for toms – even if it’s in the early morning while they’re still on the roost or midday – finding a high elevation point – if you’re hunting in areas that have steep hollers or mountains and hills – finding that high elevation can allow you to cover more area and hear a long ways.

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>>DANIEL: Whether the terrain’s flat or you’re hunting in hollers and hills, understanding how sound works is also key.

>>CLAY: [Whispering] Out there.

>>DANIEL: You often want to be on the downwind side of where you suspect turkeys are gonna be, that way that sound is carried with the wind to you.

>>DANIEL: Sometimes those toms can be quiet, and that’s when glassing or working through an area – looking into food plots, cattle pastures, maybe crop fields – can be a great technique to locate a tom.

>>DANIEL: [Whispering] Under that oak.

>>DANIEL: If you can make visual on a tom without him seeing you, you may be able to create a strategy to cut the distance and call him in.

>>DANIEL: That’s the technique Clay and I used when we were chasing turkeys in South Florida. Clay glassed a cattle pasture, spotted a tom, and we quickly developed a plan.

>>DANIEL: The large cattle pasture didn’t offer Clay and I cover at that specific location. So we had to move east about 400 yards and slip into the timber.

>>DANIEL: Not only was the timber the closest cover, but it was upwind of the toms. It was extremely windy that day, with the wind coming out of the northeast, and we knew that our calling would be carried by the wind, and the toms would hear it.

>>DANIEL: I got set up under a large live oak, and Clay, he climbed up the tree, grabbed the Burris binos to see where the toms were.

>>DANIEL: [Whispering] Well, Clay is giving me a play-by-play. He’s watching these toms. He says there’s four toms. They’ve got three hens and they’re gobbling. They’re hitting my call, so looks like they’re kinda heading this way slowly. There’s a lot of space in between us. I think we got a pretty good setup, and it sounds like they’re heading this way, so it may happen this afternoon.

>>DANIEL: As I called, Clay relayed to me what he was seeing, and it wasn’t long before he was climbing out of the tree because those toms were headed our way.

>>CLAY: [Whispering] To the left. They went over the ditch behind us.

>>CLAY: [Whispering] They’re behind us.

>>DANIEL: [Whispering] Now straight to my left. I see ‘em. They’re walking the edge of this timber.

>>DANIEL: [Whispering] Here they come.

>>CLAY: [Whispering] Can you see ‘em?

>>DANIEL: [Whispering] Yes. We’re on ‘em.

>>CLAY: [Whispering] Are they coming?

>>DANIEL: [Whispering] They’re coming straight at me.

>>DANIEL: [Whispering] They’re walking the edge of that timber. They’re coming in behind us.

>>CLAY: [Whispering] How far are they?

>>DANIEL: [Whispering] Like 50 yards.

>>DANIEL: [Whispering] It sounds like they’re moving to our right.

>>DANIEL: [Whispering] Hit a call and see if they’ll swing out.

>>DANIEL: [Whispering] Oh, they came out.

>>CLAY: [Whispering] They’re right there.

>>DANIEL: [Whispering] Here they come.

>>CLAY: [Whispering] They might come in.

>>DANIEL: [Whispering] Huh?

>>CLAY: [Whispering] They might come in.

>>DANIEL: [Whispering] Hit ‘em.

>>CLAY: [Indiscernible] Okay. Hang on. Hang on.

>>DANIEL: [Whispering] Keep hitting ‘em.

>>DANIEL: [Whispering] If they’re gonna swing here within range, you better get ready.

>>DANIEL: [Whispering] That last one.

>>CLAY: [Whispering] Yeah.

>>CLAY: You got him, dude. You smacked him! Dude!

>>CLAY: You smacked him.

>>DANIEL: Whew. Rrrr!

>>CLAY: Are you kidding me?

>>DANIEL: That was even worth it for that one.

>>DANIEL: Folks, I’ve been put through the wringer past couple days, it feels like. Had a great hunt with Grant a few mornings ago and then I was able to get behind the Winchester. And we’ve had some close encounters. The toms have just hung up.

>>DANIEL: But this afternoon I knew I was pushing it, but I had faith in the ole Winchester; and he just got a free meal of LongBeard XR for lunch. I’ll tell you what, because I’m gonna have to step it off, but I’m sure we’re pushing 50, and he went down hard.

>>CLAY: Yeah.


>>CLAY: Yeah. That’s where it’s nice to be shooting a red dot instead of a bead because –


>>CLAY: – at that distance –


>>CLAY: – the bead would’ve been –

>>DANIEL: Oh, a bead –

>>CLAY: – on the whole turkey.

>>DANIEL: – you know, I can see the bead, and I can see that hole. But with the FastFire 4, I held that red dot right on his head, and the other two got ahead of him. And that last tom, he stuck his head way up there, and I put that red dot right there on his chin, and it thumped him.

>>CLAY: Yeah, that’s for sure.

>>DANIEL: Well, I am stoked, and I am – I’m ready to go put my hands on him.

>>CLAY: Yeah, [Indiscernible].

>>DANIEL: Whoo-hoo! Look at those hooks. That’s a limb hanger right there. Man! This is a good bird.

>>CLAY: Yeah, it is.

>>DANIEL: Talk about a thrilling midday hunt. Clay and I had spotted a tom, created a plan, got set up, called him over 400 yards to us, and had fresh meat to take home to Branson.

>>DANIEL: Always feels good toting out a turkey.

>>DANIEL: We all love tagging a tom early and getting back to the house for breakfast. But I got to admit, it doesn’t always happen, and our strategies need to change throughout the day.

>>DANIEL: When toms are with hens, it’s often difficult to have them respond to calling. Overcalling can even educate the toms. A better option is rather back off, get in a location where you can hear or see toms once those hens breakaway, and plan your strategy accordingly.

>>DANIEL: It’s important to try to cut the distance as quick as you can and go ahead and get set up before calling.

>>DANIEL: If you start calling right there and you haven’t considered where you’re gonna set up, that tom could quickly close the distance to you and catch you off guard.

>>DANIEL: When listening and calling, consider the wind. Can you hear the tom, and can the tom hear you? If you’re upwind of a tom, you’re probably not calling quite as loud as if you’re downwind.

>>DANIEL: I really enjoy chasing turkeys, and there’s a lot of different techniques to use for different situations.

>>DANIEL: Stay tuned on our social media pages and our channel as we share more tips and techniques throughout the spring.

>>DANIEL: Whether you’re chasing turkeys or preparing to plant food plots or maybe you’re just out enjoying this great spring weather, I hope you take time this week and slow down, listen to what the Creator is saying to you and the purpose He has for your life.

>>DANIEL: Thanks for watching GrowingDeer.

>>CLAY: Hey, check this out.