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First 2012 Tom Down

Beautiful Bird

20 lbs - 1" spurs - 11" beard

Had an excellent hunt this morning down in SW Missouri! The birds were making up for the dead Monday in my area by gobbling their heads off! The first bird I went after flew off the roost landing about 150 yards out in the middle of a pasture. He was very content to gobble all morning, but he expected the hen to come to him – he wasn’t moving! I ended up leaving him and went to a neighboring property that I’d heard some gobbling coming from earlier in the morning.

After giving some sharp cutts I got the response I was looking for which was a thundering gobble. I snuck to the edge of a pasture and saw this strutter out at about 200 yards with a group of hens. I was able to craw and stick a couple decoys in the edge of the field and slip back into cover. The bird answered to any and all sounds my call made – he was hot! He began to slowly strut my way but started to hang up at about 100yrds. When this happens the best thing to do is to shut up and play hard to get which is exactly what I did. He began gobbling his head off wanting a response from me which I would not give. It didn’t take long before he gave in and began walking straight for me. He gobbled the whole way and began strutting at about 50yrds when he spotted the decoys. I gave a couple very soft purrs to which he spat and drummed all the harder!

The crazy bird ended up coming up tight to the timber in which I was hiding to go around a curious cow that wandered into the scene. The problem with that was that I was in a mess of brush that was taller than me (I was still standing) and I now wasn’t going to have a shot until he came around the brush which would put the bird at a mere 10 feet! Not a good scenario, but that’s what happens when you’re running a gunning. He did end up staying tight to the brush keeping me from having the 20 yard shot I was expecting. I shot the bird in full strut at 10 feet, the closest shot I’ve taken to date! It was pretty awesome being able to see the bird through the brush for those last 30 seconds just mere feet in front of me in full strut! I tell you what, you just can’t hardly beat spring turkey hunting!!

I’ll be posting a vid here in the next day or two that I shot just after I took the bird. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to get the shot on tape due to my quick set up on this bird. Good luck to the rest of you turkey hunters out there and feel free to share your stories as well along with pics – I’m always up for a good hunting story!

God Bless!

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