Turkey Hunting Tactics: Belly-Crawling Birds

Turkey Blog with Steve Hickoff

Turkey Hunting Tactics: Belly-Crawling Birds

Posted 2012-03-03T15:28:00Z

Turkey Hunting Tactics: Belly-Crawling Birds

Sometimes turkey hunting tactics involve getting down and dirty to kill a bird.

Let's just throw out an example. You spend all morning trying to interest a strutting gobbler that just won't come to your turkey calls. Since he won't play the game, you decide to go to him.

Moving like a snake, using terrain to hide your approach, you slip inside his comfort zone. You hear spitting and drumming just over the hilly rise. Intensity builds as you listen to the gobbler mince steps closer to your position, turn and drift the other way.

You figure this much: when the turkey moves closer, turns and minces steps slightly away, your movement will be hidden by the gobbler's displayed fan. You figure right.

Peeking over the rise, you see the lone turkey's head is hidden. You slowly raise your shotgun and take aim. You cluck and the gobbler lifts its colorful head. You kill the longbeard at 30 steps. Satisfaction overwhelms you. Belly-crawling turkeys can work.

Back at camp, you tell the story. Bushwhacker! one guy barks, trash-talking at your success. Others join in. Did you do anything wrong?

Let's look at some viewpoints.

Hunter safety instructors routinely preach against stalking wild turkeys, and that's what you did. Their concern involves possible mistaken for game issues as you move toward a gobbling turkey.

Turkey calling purists insist if you don't call a bird to your position, it isn't fair chase.

Still others might say using woodsmanship to get in range of the most paranoid game bird on the planet is an unrivaled accomplishment.

If it's legal in your state, what's the harm?

So where do you stand on belly-crawling, turkey hunters? Let us know in the comments section below and thanks.