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Borch's "D" Season Recap


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Well my brother, nephew and I hit the turkey woods with high expectations as I was seeing toms on a consistent basis scouting the areas we had permission to hunt. Thursday morning I was on my own and found the woods to be very quiet. I saw toms still doing a lot of establishing pecking order so I brought along my strutting jake decoy with the fan replaced with a real turkey fan from years past. After about 45 minutes into the season I had what appeared to be a nice 2 year old tom show up in the field. I yelped a few times and he went into strut and gobbled several times as he zeroed in on the strutting intruder. Once he got 25 yards from the decoy he broke strut and ran to the decoy that I had set at 10 yards. Well that close decoy placement made it tough to get my gun up undetected and once he got nervous and started to run off I somehow managed to miss him clean at 10 yards. Not a big deal I've got lots of time I told myself. The rest of the morning resulted in 3 jakes and a hen visiting me for almost 2 hours but no toms. My brother, Wes and 8 year old nephew, Charlie showed up after Charlie got home from school. We hit another property and settled into different blinds. Right away I started seeing hens and after a couple hours heard a shot. My brother shot a 25 lb tom with 1 3/8" spurs and a 9 3/4" beard. The tom was just a bit out of range of my nephew's 20 gauge but he was pumped up seeing dad shoot the big tom. Here's a picture of Wes and Charlie posing with his limb hanger after the hunt.


I saw more hens and a jake that evening and over the next several days all I saw were jakes and hens. Charlie saw hens but never got a chance to get a shot at a turkey. Seems that every time we set up we should have been somewhere else. I was on a jake and hen run and the last morning I had 4 jakes and up to 3 hens in front of me for over 2 hours. I was going bonkers and vowed to eat my tag or shoot a mature bird. I had an evening commitment and needed to leave shortly after 3 pm to make it in time. So that time came and passed without any tom sightings. So off to home I went. When I got there my wife let me know that my commitment was now up in the air. Within an hour it was cancelled and I was off turkey hunt for the last few hours of the season. When I got to my new location I found tons of strutting markes and fresh feathers near my blind location. Should of been here instead this morning I guess. But I set up the strutting jake decoy again and settled in. The wind was howling and it was tough hearing myself think let alone any turkey noises, but I thought I heard a gobble way back behind me. I really cranked up the volume on my boxcall but did not hear a response. About 5 minutes later I again hit the boxcall trying to cut through the wind. A few minutes later I saw something black and white 120 yards in front of me and then I saw a fan pop up. It was even a full fan! He did however have the 4 jakes along with him that I had spent so much time with earlier in the day about 1/2 mile away.

He danced back and forth in full strut for a few minutes and I softly called on my boxcall and set it down for good. He definitely knew where that hen was at now. He then saw the strutting jake decoy and strutted closer and closer dance back and forth but steadily eating up the yards as he went. He hit the magic 40 yard mark and I had the bead on him but let him get a bit closer and waited for him to stick his neck out. At 33 yards he turn and looked at the strutting jake decoy and I pulled the trigger sending the #6 hevishot on it's way and he was down for the count as the jakes looked on not sure what they should do. I looked at my watch and it was 7 pm on the last day of my season. I had about an hour and a half to spare. Second year in a row that I had a last minute tom to fill my tag. He was a nice 2 year old tom weighing 22 pounds and having 7/8" spurs and a 9 1/8" beard.


Over all it seemed our bird numnbers are down significantly from last year. Birds must still be moving around as several toms I was seeing regularly just seemed to be gone when our season started and there wasn't any hunting pressure on these properties prior to our hunt. Also being persistent as you never know when it will be the right place and time. Second year in a row now that I thought I was eating tag sandwich and instead got to give a nice tom a ride home in my truck.

Good Luck to those still hunting.

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