Morrisons Cove Herald - Putting cows on the front page since 1885.

By RICHARD TATE
Correspondent 

The Sportsman's Corner

Bob's Gobblers

 


By May 12 last spring, the score with spring turkeys was gobblers – 12, me – 0. That Saturday I had my son, Bob, with me. We set up on a knob where I’d been hearing a gobbler. I hoped that Bob could turn the tables on him. However, the woods were silent. By 9:00 I’d had enough and told Bob that I was heading for home and a nap. I had gotten very little sleep since the beginning of the gobbler season. (Trout fishing had been inconsistent, and I’d been trying to squeeze in a little of that, too.)

“I’m going to stop at a couple of spots on my way home,” Bob, who lives near Tyrone, told me. “Maybe I can stir one up.”

“Good luck with that,” I replied, thinking his cause was hopeless.

At 11:30 the phone rang. “I just got a gobbler, Dad. I’m bringing him back to show you. Get your camera ready. He’s a big boy.”

A half-hour later, Bob arrived with a 20-pound gobbler sporting a 10-inch beard. “Let’s hear your story,” I said.

“I was almost home and made my final stop along the road. I made a call, and a long way off I heard a gobble. I gathered my stuff together and hustled into the woods. I knew there was a big opening 75 yards off the road, and I got there and set up. I made another call. Only minutes later a big gobbler, a couple of hens, and two young toms stepped into the opening. The big gobbler was starting to strut about 60 yards from me when the bigger of the jakes [young gobblers] jumped him and started a turkey fight. Feathers flew all over the place. When the fight was over, the jake ran out of the opening, and the big gobbler strutted over to show off for the hens. He was missing his middle tail feathers from the fight. He still wasn’t close enough for a shot; so I clucked a couple of times, and the hens eased my way. The gobbler followed them. They stopped fewer than 35 yards away. I had to wait for the hens to get out of my line of sight so I could fire at the gobbler. After I shot, he ran around in a circle and then crashed to the ground. It was a strange but quick hunt.”

So, on only his third day to hunt, Bob killed a big gobbler. It took me another two weeks to shoot the smallest spring gobbler I’ve ever tagged.

 

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