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Double Talk for Tough Gobblers

By Mark Koehler

As hunting pressure increases, gobblers often become wise and call shy. When I think that the gobbler that I have set up has been called to before and normal calling methods are not working, then it is time to change tactics. One choice might be the use of two calls to simulate hen talk. I often relocate and try to sound like two or more hens feeding. I do not call to the gobbler until he shows interest.

One example took place during the second week of the Missouri spring season. A heavy sounding gobbler had set up camp in a heavily wooded area with dirt roads on the north and east side. Several hunters had tried to call him as he would answer shock calls from the road. All they had succeeded in doing was educating him. I decided it was my turn when I heard him gobble while I was feeding cows.

It was around 9:30 a.m. when I eased into the woods and set up. I called softly and he immediately answered and started to work my way. I continued to call and purr. He was interested but would not get any closer that about 75 yards. Finally, he shut up completely and when he did gobble again he was further away. The normal approach had not worked so it was time to change tactics. So I called real aggressively and shut up. Then I headed to the other side of the wooded area. I knew that he would stay away from the road so all that I had to do was get to the other side with out being seen. This meant about a mile hike. As I was moving to the other side he would gobble about every 10 minutes.

When I got around him I set up behind a huge black oak and waited for him to gobble then I called real soft using a double reed call with my mouth close to the back side of the tree. I did this hoping that he would not be able to pinpoint my location. After using the twin call I switched to a triple and called slightly louder then back to the twin. I was not calling to the gobbler but I was making hen talk.

I had no more than got the third call out when he gobbled from about 200 yards, I called again and he double-gobbled, I continued to hen talk using two calls until he was about 100 yards from me. He was getting fired up so I didn’t change calls. Using the twin, I continued to call with my mouth close to the back side of the tree, and scratched in the leaves. He came charging in double and triple gobbling. I had to let him get past me slightly since I was behind the tree before I could shoot. I dropped him with one shot at 17 steps. He weighed 21 pounds with a 11 ½ inch beard and 1 ¼ inch spurs.

Patience and double talk had helped me take my second gobbler for the spring. The time was 11:30 a.m.

(You can contact Mark at diamondkoutfitters@hotmail.com )

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