flashlight or no flashlight

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creek bottom
 
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flashlight or no flashlight

Postby creek bottom » April 11th, 2010, 4:47 pm

Hello everyone, I was wondering what yall think about entering the woods in the mornings ( flashlight or no flashlight ). I always get in the woods early to give things time to calm back down but the last couple of times that I went turkey hunting and the bird flew down and went the total opposite direction. My question is the bird spotting me and running the other way or has he already got his girl waiting. I use a couple of soft yelps as soon as he hits the ground (maybe a stupid question)

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shaman
 
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RE: flashlight or no flashlight

Postby shaman » April 11th, 2010, 5:03 pm

It all depends on how you do it.  A 2AA flashlight held low and pointed down at your feet will get you pretty close without bugging the gob.  A headlight swinging back and forth and every which-way will tip off the gob much further back. 

I've gotten within 60 yards of a roosted gobbler in the dark using a flashlight, but I was in heavy cedars and I went in well before light.  Usually nowadays I go out a lot later and set up a lot further back.
Genesis 9:2-4 Ministries of SW Bracken County, KY
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TreeTrunkNarcoleptic
 
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RE: flashlight or no flashlight

Postby TreeTrunkNarcoleptic » April 11th, 2010, 6:48 pm

I borrowed an idea from when I was in the navy.  Standard policy underway is to go to "darken ship" every night at sunset.  We turn off every external light and become invisible except to radar.  If you need light outside, your flashlight better have a filtered lens on it.  It's sometimes enough to see what you're doing, but it sure won't travel far at all.  Even on a flight deck, everyone uses filtered wands and flashlights.  There is only one guy allowed to have an unfiltered white light and that's the one guy on the catapult crew who makes the last moment inspection of the holdback fitting while the birds are throttled up in tension.
 
I went to an arts and crafts store and bought some photo luminescent paper.  They make it in a variety of colors but I chose green because it's a more natural color to a wooded enviornment.  I used the plastic lens of my flashlight as a template and cut out numerous circular disc.  I actually set up two flashlights each with varying degrees of filtration.  With one I can only see my feet and a radius of about two feet around my feet if I hold the flashlight down below my waist.  I use this one if I have to see what I'm about to trip over.  The other allows me to see about 6 feet ahead of me, because there are times when you just need to find a landmark you know you should be close to.
 
I know there will be those that frown on using any light source at all, but private property you already know like the back of your hand or time to seriously scout are not luxuries I enjoy.  I get out there as often as I possibly can and almost always that means I'm trying to get into a set-up I know too little about and have no idea where birds are roosted.  In those cases, you make the best of it and do what you gotta' do.
"You can't grill it 'till you kill it."

TreeTrunkNarcoleptic
 
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RE: flashlight or no flashlight

Postby TreeTrunkNarcoleptic » April 11th, 2010, 7:01 pm

One other thing I would add is to set your alarm clock extra early and plan on being there at least an hour before daybreak.  You can get away with walking right under roost trees if you do it right.  Think about it, animals move around underneath their roost trees all the time and they don't freak out over it.  Just sound like one of them.
 
Be a deer as you walk to your set-up.  Don't walk with your usual gate.  Pick your feet up and put them down in a deliberate manner.  Take a few steps at a time, then pause for a few moments.  .....Look around.  .....Sniff the air.  .....Listen for any sounds out there.   ....Then walk a few more steps.  If you sound natural, they won't be alarmed.   Get into your set-up extra early and catch up on those zzzz's you lost.  The turkey's will have forgotten all about you by the time the sun comes up.
"You can't grill it 'till you kill it."

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Everyday Hunter
 
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RE: flashlight or no flashlight

Postby Everyday Hunter » April 12th, 2010, 3:18 am

TreeTrunkNarcoleptic... love that name!

And I agree with your view of walking in the woods in the dark. It has to be often that coyotes or other animals walk under the gobbler's roost. Certainly deer do it regularly. Then there are coons, 'possums and skunks. Sounds on the ground must be routine for roosted turkeys.

You can get away with a lot if it's dark enough that they don't see you, if it's early enough that they get over any disturbance, and if you're quiet enough to sound like one of the many other earth-bound sounds they year.

Steve
When [url="http://www.EverydayHunter.com"]"The Everyday Hunter"[/url] isn't hunting, he's thinking about hunting, talking about hunting, dreaming about hunting, writing about hunting, or wishing he were hunting.

FireFly908
 
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Joined: August 29th, 2009, 3:38 pm

RE: flashlight or no flashlight

Postby FireFly908 » April 12th, 2010, 5:16 am

ORIGINAL: TreeTrunkNarcoleptic

One other thing I would add is to set your alarm clock extra early and plan on being there at least an hour before daybreak.  You can get away with walking right under roost trees if you do it right.  Think about it, animals move around underneath their roost trees all the time and they don't freak out over it.  Just sound like one of them.

Be a deer as you walk to your set-up.  Don't walk with your usual gate.  Pick your feet up and put them down in a deliberate manner.  Take a few steps at a time, then pause for a few moments.  .....Look around.  .....Sniff the air.  .....Listen for any sounds out there.   ....Then walk a few more steps.  If you sound natural, they won't be alarmed.   Get into your set-up extra early and catch up on those zzzz's you lost.  The turkey's will have forgotten all about you by the time the sun comes up.

 
Just a couple of questions.  While catching up on the zzzz's I lost, I was wondering if snoring sounds natural to the turkeys?  [:)]
Also, what if you zzzz right through fly down?  Just stay there till the next day?  [:D]

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eddie234
 
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RE: flashlight or no flashlight

Postby eddie234 » April 12th, 2010, 6:08 am

I got one of those hat lights with green LED's, used a sharpie marker to color the clear lens of my mini mag light green. I try to get out early well before sunup. Last year I unknowingly set up under a tree a tom was roosted in.

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Cut N Run
 
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RE: flashlight or no flashlight

Postby Cut N Run » April 12th, 2010, 9:25 am

I use a Streamlight with a single green LED bulb.  I hold it in my hand like a dagger with the bulb inside my clenched fingers.  I can adjust the grip on my pinky finger to add more light or cut down what is showing.  I also use those bright eyes reflective tacks about ankle-high on trees along my route through the thickest part of the woods where I'd sound like a bulldozer if I didn't have a well marked trail.
 
Jim
Luck Counts, good or bad

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eggshell
 
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RE: flashlight or no flashlight

Postby eggshell » April 12th, 2010, 12:08 pm

I really think we give the turkeys way to much credit on the intelligence quota. I do not use a light unless it is so brushy I need it to negotiate the terrain. If by chance I spook a bird with a light...there will be another bird or day. I usually don'
t even carry a light unless I know i need it. Most mornings i don't even enter the woods until light is graying up things. On some setups I know I need to get position I go in early enough things quiet down for a half hr before light and birds will usually act normal. This year I did buy a hat with two mini lights built right into the bill, but I'll use it more for fishing than in the turkey woods. Since I can't remember killing a bird right off the roost in the last 3 years it's not a big issue with me. I'd  guess only 1-2 out of ten of all my birds have been first set up kills, so I don't make it a big issue.

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kenturkey89
 
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RE: flashlight or no flashlight

Postby kenturkey89 » April 12th, 2010, 12:37 pm

I always take a flashlight with me because even though I know the land I hunt really well, there's always a new hole or stump somewhere that I've never seen before. I always turn it on for just a second to make sure I'm not about to step in anything or fall in a hole. Season opens for me this weekend so I'm going to have to try out some of the new ideas you guys have posted!

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