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Whats working now for turkey decoy placement?

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Going to take my son out this coming weekend. Just wondering what seems to be working right now for everyone's sets. Just thinking that,,, in S.W. mn. the breeding season might be on the tail end right now is all. Thinking maybe a feeder and a upright?

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We're a long ways yet from the tail end of the breeding season. A jake and a hen or two always seem to work for me right up till the last few days of the season.

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My son took a Tom this morning... Flew down off the roost with 6 hens 150 yards away... that Tom could not handle the incessant cutting from my call along with some purrs thrown in for good measure. An Avian Jake with a trimmed off beard next to a DSD hen... I literally pulled him off those 6 hens and he closed the distance... After 15-20 minutes of my non-stop calling and his gobbling and strutting, my son thought I said 'shoot' when I whispered 'dont shoot'... 60+ yards (paced it off afterwards).... BOOOM. Dang kid pulled it off! I told him never again! I had that bird... less than 5 minutes and he would have been a slam dunk 35 yard shot! All's well that end's well I suppose.

I usually just go with one or two hens most season's, but really thinking that Jake was more than Mr Tom could handle lording over the hen deke. I think that was a great set for a Tom if you know his 'strutting' areas. Also, I have learned that most guys say do not call too often... I have literally taken more than half my birds with very aggressive, almost obnoxious calling... watch that Tom. I was afraid I losing him as those live hens were sliding off. I turned up the heat on the call to the point I was even thinking this is over doing it... but he continued to respond and work towards us. The 6 hens were now 200+ yards away... and he was closing the gap on ths dekes...

Lots off breeding left to go! still big groups of hens with Toms. Had another group of 5 with a Jake come in yesterday on a different property.

Hope you and your son have a great hunt!

Good Luck!

Ken

full-357-55262-hunter2015.jpg

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I like a jake of any type but a smaller jake strutting has worked well for me. I like them to look for that sweet calling hen and not pin her location down.

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I like a jake of any type but a smaller jake strutting has worked well for me. I like them to look for that sweet calling hen and not pin her location down.

+1 now days if I use a decoy it is a 1/4 strut jake.

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So do you mean you guys aren't putting out a hen decoy at all?

I wouldn't go without one myself, but that's just me.

There's no right or wrong way to any of this stuff. If something isn't working, switch it up. If something works for you, stick with it. Every bird is going to react differently than the next to each situation.

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Interesting. Does everyone posting on this thread always set decoys ?

I am not anti-decoy .. I own a b-mobile, Dakota Jake and a bunch of other hen and jake decoys ... that said ...

I have shot four Toms in the previous four years and while I do occasionally use decoys ... not one of these recent MN gobblers were killed with a decoy set. While one flew down into my lap without a single note, the other three came into the call in the traditional way.

I hunt above the North Metro. Most years Toms run single and I rarely if ever see jakes alone (almost always in bands of 3 or more).

Always exceptions ... Buddy and I killed a double two years ago. The pair of Toms crossed two fields and a gravel road frequented by more than an occasional car or truck. No decoys though.

I have found that aggressive cutting works best on pulling in the hen leading her Tom to his demise. The largest MN public land gobbler I killed followed the hen he had just bred ...

I always wonder if decoys are more productive in areas with higher turkey densities (SE MN and other states). I have had good success with them in other states where both Toms and Jakes have attacked by jake decoy.

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I do (almost) always use decoys, but my main technique is sitting field edges. Having decoys that can be seen from far out in the field is a huge advantage, often calling is not even necessary.

Oh sure there's times when they just don't make sense, like setting up in a heavily wooded area when there's no way a decoy could be seen anyway, but for me, field edges(and decoys)have been extremely effective so I'll stick to it.

FWIW, I think the newer decoys, Avian X, DSD, Dakota Extreme Jake etc, work WAY better than the ugly old plastic ones from 10 years ago.

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I've had better luck the last few years on the days I put no decoys out. This past season had a hen walk thru my 2 hens and jake decoys without bothering her at all. Next day, different area 2 different hens sure got nervous by the decoys and I had a tom hang up maybe 40 yards away but I could not see him. The pop up could have also made the Tom nervous but it for sure was the decoys on the hens. 3rd day at noon on open field with no decoy I had a 25 lb, 10 1/2" beard, 1 1/8" spur bird come in on a string from 100 yards out to 35 yards and then he stopped dead in his tracks. Sometimes decoys work and other times they don't.

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Sometimes decoys work and other times they don't.

Isn't that the truth! A jake & hen is my starting point. Often end up w/ just a hen, or none at all depening on time period and pressure. Hard to beat having a tom commit to a decoy under 10 yds though!

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For me it's a lone jake or no decoys. I used to be 99% no decoys but now it's about 50/50. Hens in the set burned me almost every time with hung up mature toms. Jakes and 2 year olds usually decoyed just fine.

But that's just me.

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My wife had a tom run across a plowed field and beat the snot out of the DSD jake Sunday morning. Completely ignored the breeding hen. Once she was out of arrows, he simply walked off. I think she was just a tad excited! Wish I could've been in the blind to help!

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