Turkey hunting - do I need decoys?


Well-Known Member
R.O.C. (Radio Operator's Certificate)
And I don’t think there is anything magical about them running onto the neighbours property therefore removing all my chances of being able to hunt that bird
Also makes him extra wary next time he comes over to play 👍

Old Cut LongPointer

Well-Known Member
I prefer sitting in a blind but have and will "run & gun" if that's what it takes. Some birds are stupid and walk right out into your decoys and stand perfectly still with their neck stretched out and then there are those that challenge your skills to the limit. That's why I love Turkey hunting !


Well-Known Member
I have never liked the term "run and gun" it sounds reckless. Though I do love the type of hunting that most people mean when they use it. I certainly don't do any running and when it works it results in a single careful shot. I have a pop up blind and used it a couple of times but I hated it and could not make myself stay in it for long. I have never fired a shot from it. I have kept it and will use it to take my Grandsons when they are old enough for their first hunts. I am not criticizing people who use them, it's just not for me.

I prefer to move stealthily through the woods, walking very slowly, stopping often to sit still and listen usually for a half hour or more before I move again. I call and listen for distant responses. I find this works particularly well after about 10am when the early rush of breeding is over. I know the woods I hunt very well and have favourite trees here and there where I like to sit. If I hear a distant gobble I will slip as quietly as I can to the next favourite tree in that direction. If the gobble is close I sit tight and call softly.

This style of hunting does require access to a hundred acres or so (not thousands) of good habitat. It also requires a very good knowledge of that land so you always understand what is between you and the bird you hear. It certainly does not always work but when it does I find it very exciting and much less of a test of my limited patience.
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Well-Known Member
Turkey hunting is fun, don't change it.
You have to be able to determine when to make a call, and when not to. scouting and putting n hrs of watching their routine will always pay off.
set up with very travel areas where your turkeys play, or cut them off at the pass between playground and food sources. roost them at night and setup in early morning.
Just don't fall asleep like i tend to do with a nice warm sun and full belly. lol
good luck , have fun,
if by chance you drop a decoy or 2 out, and you notice the birds don;t like them and they walk away, then you will know they don't like it, so end the decoys stuff,
heck I've found out i can use a chainsaw as i call last 2 years. doesn't even scare them. that's a plus 1 for me. lol, oh and camo with chainsaw isn't needed too. but that's for the birds in my area, each area is different.
have fun, shoot straight,


Active Member
I started hunting turkeys the first legal season. I am lucky to have a large area of private land to hunt , and have still run in to the odd run and gunner ( always confused about who owns what ). I have used every hunting scenario , and have learned a few things. Use decoys , but a lot of the time don’t bother ( it’s 50/50 ) you have to have a good area to hunt (I’m blessed , they are all around my property , and in my backyard )I don’t like blinds for turkey ,or deer . I have given up on the being out there to get them when they fly down from the roost . First thing they are with hens , hard if not impossible to call. I like to just poke around (like any other 72 year old ) I also hunt out my back door and never leave before 8 am. I have shot most of my birds between 9 am and noon. That’s when the toms have bred their hens and are looking for more . I use a slate call 90 % of the time , and a box call when you need a little more volume. When it comes to calling , less is more. Overcalling is the number one mistake that newbies make (used to be one ) hit a bad note ,or worse call non stop and the bird has your location dialled in . I actually haven’t hunted them in the last two years , have found fly fishing for trout more interesting . Don’t have the patience to sit that long anymore.

Old Cut LongPointer

Well-Known Member
LoL ! Really... run and gun ? Does sound dangerous , how about sneak and shoot ? Now a days for me it's more like plod and plop ! Hence I build a brush blind on the edge of a field with a comfortable deck chair to sit in so I can watch the world come alive in the morning but you made me think Morgan... most of my birds were shot between 0900-to 1200hrs also. Back when quitting time was noon I shot my first bird at 1135hrs. , took him to the Fairground Station for mandatory check in, 21Lb 9 oz., 8 3/4 inch beard and spurs were just under an inch and that was in my third year of hunting turkeys. Btw; I used decoys to get him, so as to the OP ? Better to have a couple of decoys then to wish you did. How and where to use them... ? No two hunts are the same other than the fact you will learn something new and it will make you a better hunter.


Well-Known Member
We chase birds all the time. If they won’t come to us we’ll do an end run and ambush. Killed just as many birds while chasing them as I have by sitting still. I find them to be creatures of habit and in my experience even a bumped bird will return to its preferred range in a few hours. Heck I even killed one Tom a day after I shot at him and missed. 50 yards from the spot I shot the day before. Same bird for sure as the second time he came in dead quiet and I’d have never known he was coming if I hadn’t spotted his melon sneaking through the woods!
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