Turkey hunting is an old tradition in the United States. Many of the Americans love turkey in their Thanksgiving feast. The Thanksgiving feast is even better if a turkey is dished up that is actually hunted by the head of the household. To make such a wonderful sport safe and fun for everybody, there are many things that have to be considered before going out hunting for turkeys.
One of the decisions that have to be made is whether or not a decoy is used for hunting these wonderful birds. Not every hunter likes to use decoys, but decoys do have their advantages when it comes to turkey hunting. A decoy arouses the suspicion of other turkeys and therefore if set in an open area, such as the edge of a field or beneath a mature oak forest, these decoys essentially are a visual call for other birds. Decoys are especially effective when calling the birds with turkey calls every once in a while.
Even though some of the more experienced hunters prefer not to use decoys, they are great assets when dealing with young inexperienced hunters such as children or a person with a disability. The decoy draws the attention on itself and therefore less attention to the hunter and the set up of the hunting gear.
Decoys come in a great variety of styles, such as picture boards, which are a mere silhouette of the bird all the way to stuffed and inflatable ones. Some of the inflatable decoy turkeys have a string attached so they can make small movements. In recent years, the trend has shown that inflatable decoys are a new hit with hunters, since they are fast to set up, easy to take down and even easier to store when deflated. Hunters that use decoys will be able to testify that many of the commonly available decoys have been successfully used in the field and are a good tool to bring the turkeys closer to the hunter.
When setting up the decoy there, are several things that should be kept in mind. First of all, here are a few tips on safety when it comes to hunting with decoys. Before going out hunting for turkeys with a decoy, local regulations need to be checked. Not every state allows decoys and therefore it might be illegal to use decoys. Also very important is to remember to never to carry a decoy that is not covered. Even the smallest distance walked with an uncovered decoy bears a risk of being shot accidentally. When setting up decoys, it is important to make sure that from the hunter’s seat, there is approximately 100 yards of sight available. The decoy needs to be placed somewhere around 25 yards from the hunting position. Additionally, it is also important to always make sure that no one else is staking out the turkey decoy and that no one else is close to the position of the decoy. Should somebody even be remotely close, the hunter needs to go ahead and shout out to the person in a loud clear voice for the safety of both persons.
Another aspect to remember is that even though turkeys are sometimes seen in a flock, to attract them it is not necessary to set up a whole flock of birds. Generally one to three birds are plenty to attract another turkey and actually are proven to be better for decoying wild turkeys. Turkeys aren’t like geese, so therefore a good choice for a decoy arrangement would be two hens and a single jake. Some of the hunting stores already sell sets of turkey decoys just like the one mentioned here. The best way to place the jake is facing towards the hunter. When the opponent comes in, to face the jake, the wild turkey will show its back to the hunter, which gives the hunter time for any last minute adjustments that might be necessary.