Setting up correctly for turkey hunting can make or break your chance of getting a turkey. This article will help increase your chances of getting a turkey by setting up right setup
The best time of the day to get your turkey is on your first setup. Your first set up is a very important one. Ideally, what you want to do is see the turkeys fly up to the roost the night before you are going to hunt or listen and locate them gobble on the roost. You can get them to gobble on the roost by using locator calls or a gobble call. If you did not locate them the night before, you should try some locator calls to find where they are roosting in the morning. If you have no success hearing any turkeys gobbling, you should set up in a spot where you think they will be.
Well known turkey expert Dave Constantine told me that he and other hunters have found that for the most part all wild turkeys tend to fly down from the roost away from the rising sun. They are not sure why this is true, but they think it is so they can better see predators when they fly down. Keep this in mind when setting up, make sure you use this to your advantage.
Usually a good distance to set up from the turkey is about 100 yards. If you go any closer you must be very quiet. Turkeys normally fly near or into a field. Setting up on the edge of the field is where you want to be most of the time for your first setup. So, putting your decoys in the field should work well. Gobblers normally fly where there is sun, so they can show off their bright feathers to the hens. So keep this is mind too when picking your set up spot. If you are trying to decide between two places to set up, go where there is more sun.
It is a good idea to set up one or more decoys. It usually works best to have one or two hens and have a jake (1 year old turkey) decoy. Put the jake decoy behind one of the hens so it looks like they are in a mating position. This will help to draw a gobbler in, and make him angry. Try to get your decoys to move as much as they can. Inflatable decoys such as Feather Flex will move when the wind blows. Using aluminum arrows for stakes instead of the stakes that come with the decoys will help the decoys move more in the wind.
Usually I will set my decoys out 10-15 yards. That way if the turkey hangs up it is still in shooting range. Position the decoys to one side or the other of you. Do not put them right in front of you. If you know where the turkey is put the decoys to the side away from the turkey. Then the turkey has to walk past you to get to the decoys. This way you should be able to get a good shot.
After your first setup you will probably not want to set up on a field anymore. Generally after one or two hours after a turkey has flown down from the roost it will start moving to higher ground. You then will want to set up on slopes and ridges, unless you have located turkeys elsewhere.
Here are links to diagrams of how to set up on turkeys. Hung up turkeys, using ridges, and logging trails to your advantage. The circles with Xs in the middle represent the hunters. The plain circles are the turkeys
Turkey hunting may sound like it is easy, but it is not. Turkeys are very unpredictable and spook very easily, so hunting them is not easy. If you would ask anyone who has hunted turkeys for a while I am sure they could tell you many stories how that big gobbler got away. With these tips it should greatly improve your chances of harvesting a turkey. And oh yeah, it is a lot of fun!........................Dinger