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Son of a Fitch; Opening day success

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  • Son of a Fitch; Opening day success

    Good day for the Kid and a nice weekend overall. My cousin and a friend rolled in early yesterday afternoon to hunt turkeys with us for the first time in three years. Don’t need to tell you why they missed the last two. Spent last evening getting caught up and telling old stories until about 10:30 when we called it a night ahead of opening morning.

    As usual we headed up a bit before daybreak, the Kid sitting up top of the meadow, my cousin around the back side and our friend setting up in between. My daughter and I sat down low as she needed to head out a bit earlier, we’d be out of the way if the others were into birds. We pretty much had the fields covered no matter what way birds came in.

    Problem was we heard nothing to start the morning off. Odd because it seemed to be a perfect morning. The temperature was about 30* with clear skies and no wind. I was having a rough go after nursing a bad back the past couple weeks and couldn’t sit without serious discomfort. After about an hour my daughter and I called it quits and headed for the house. She was a bit cold, I was hurting and nothing was happening. Apparently the two other old guys were of the same mindset because not long after we got to the house they each came in separately maybe ten minutes apart. The girls headed in to church, Joe and I continued catching up while my cousin made breakfast sandwiches.

    After a bit I checked my phone that I’d set down in another room. There was a text from the Kid asking if we were at the house that he’d sent a half hour earlier. I replied back that breakfast was waiting. It wasn’t five minutes or so later when my phone began to buzz, he was Face Timing me.

    When the phones connected he was holding his up in front of himself as he was walking along. I asked where he was and he said “the snowmobile trail”. It’s a short run that connects to the neighbors via a break in the stonewall that separates the two parcels. I asked if he’d heard anything and he casually turns his phone to show the tom he’s carrying. We all get excited for him but tell him to hurry down, he’s running late for church and he’s needed to run the Live Stream connection they use.

    When he gets to the house we get the quick rundown. He’d had two hens come out of the woods a few minutes after he’d sat down. They never made a peep until getting out in the field and then just let out a few clucks now and then. They worked their way down but then doubled back and fed their way right back the way they came. Things stayed quiet after that until he decided to send me the initial text. When I didn’t respond after a few minutes he decided to loop down around to see if we were still there. He only got a few hundred yards when he heard a gobble rip.

    He pulled out his box call, let out a few yelps and had an immediate response. He parked it under the nearest suitable tree and before he could call again had another gobble closer in. He looked in the direction it came from and could see two toms about 75 yards out headed right for him. He called again and had another gobble back at him. The lead tom was puffing up and looking as he came in but the second one looked a little bigger. It wasn’t long and they both were right in front at 15 yards. The second bird worked his way around a tree with his head up and as he stepped out the Kid rolled him with a load of 3” Remington Nitro turkey 5’s. The other bird stood there confused for a bit before walking off. The Kid then picked up his bird and made the call to me as he headed down. The whole thing took maybe ten minutes tops.


    Talking with a couple of his friends later on he found out they hadn’t heard anything much either. His one bud did kill a bird as well but only after scoping out four different spots and making a move to set up on one he spotted in a field. The other friend and his dad heard and saw nothing.

    The Kid made it to church in time to run the Live Stream and I got to clean a turkey. Kinda though I was past that, lol!


    Estimated weight of 16lbs, 3/4” spurs and a beard that had a few strands to 10”.


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  • #2
    Congratulations son of Fitch! Getting mobile and staying alert. Looks like some good calling too. 🦃+👀+🗣=🍗. Around here 30* ain't a "perfect" morning for turkeys. Below 50 and it shuts them up and keeps them roosted till midday. Spending woods time with friends and family is always the best times.
    Unless your son is shorter than I think, his birds estimated weight seems a little conservative to me. Gorgeous bird.(aren't they all?)
    If I had a stone fence like that I would have posed pics of all my favorite guns against it. Would make a cool senior picture backdrop as well.
    Sorry about your back. Hope it resolves quickly for you. Take some experienced advice. Don't push it, you'll regret it. Still, hoping you and your daughter take a bird. Stay safe, get well.
    Last edited by dewman; 05-02-2022, 08:57 AM.

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    • #3
      Congrats! We've gone from dry and cold to rainy, green and tick-infested. All in about two weeks from the last snow. I think I would find a lot to photograph with that terrain and fence

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      • #4
        Congrats to the "Kid"!
        Very nice bird and a great story!
        We've been up in the 80's and 90's.
        Woke this morning to 50° with a stiff northeast wind (20/25mph) that will chill you to the bone!
        We built a fire!

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        • #5
          Quiet this weekend and we didn’t hunt much, maybe an hour or so each morning. Ballgames are still going on plus Mother’s Day.

          The Kid has been working on this in woodworking class at High School. He and a couple buds decided to give it a go with some scrap wood that was laying around. He needs to pick up a spring to keep the paddle off the box at the correct height but it’s sounding pretty dang good. Just not quite dialed in yet. The pitch and volume is ok but it’s not very forgiving to use. If you don’t hit it just right it squeaks fairly harshly. He’s been working the angles of the paddle and box a little at a time with progress but it’s trial and error. So far it’s gotten better as he’s gone along.

          Be pretty cool to kill one with a box you built yourself. Definitely will be an heirloom piece someday if he gets it right.

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          • #6
            Some woods work better than others for calls. Plenty of chalk makes a difference as well. Making calls is some good fun.

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            • #7
              I think the box itself is cherry and the lid maple but I could be wrong. He’s put lots of chalk on it already, I’m sure it’s usable as is but he’s not satisfied just yet.

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              • #8
                I was always under the impression box calls were made of cedar. 😉!

                The very first birds I called in was with a box call I had thrown together.
                I was working on the soffit and fascia on my home and realized I was used finger joint cedar, and turkey season just opened! 😃!
                A table saw and some Elmers Wood glue and I set out.
                The box call sounded like a mouse with his foot caught in a trap and the birds were hotter than an eleven dollar cook stove. .....the call worked!

                You're right fitch270! There is a real sense of achievement when you've called in a bird with a call you made!
                I don't know how many birds I've called in and killed with a wingbone yelper I made!

                Comment

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