I agree with both of ya, that the hunt in the early hours are usually the most productive, exciting, vocal, and visually active time of the hunters day, not neccasarily the turkeys' day. I used to look at the afternoon hunting of wild turkeys, much the same as you fellas seem to, which is the way I feel most turkeys hunters look at the afternoon hunt. Some years back, I began to get more and more requests for guiding services, for spring turkey hunts, and with that came a felt responsibility for giving the client all I had. I found that I felt less than adequate for the afternoon hunts, as the ratio of filled tags dropped sharply from roughly noon to 5:00. I've change my tactics from those days, and have a greater confidence level now, than then, based upon results for clients. I feel the the following changes in my Hunting Style are the reasons for latter day success.......
I talked with my younger brother, who had been a big game guide in Id, for over 20yrs. asking his opinion, as a guide and a hunter. Hunt em like ya hunt elk, he said. There ain't one less gobbler there later in the day than there was that morning, and just cause he ain't talkin don't mean you can't find him, if you look properly in the right places.
Many times I have stated that a large portion of my success, comes from having good optics around my neck, but I have seen that only about 10% of turkey hunters carry them, on this side of the Mississippi, whereas the numbers are much higher on the other side of the big muddy. Those fellas that say, all that runnin and gunnin does is bump birds, are moving way too fast, and need to slow down. They've been watchin too many turkey hunts on TV, and listen to the words RUN-N-GUN, for too long!
In the afternoon while your getting ready to move, you gotta know what to look for, and where to look for it, and always be lookin for it, through those optics. My key to success in the afternoon is having the glass in front of my eyes, 60-75% of the time I'm on my feet. I only sit when sign, vocalisations, and habitat dictate !
I could go on & on, but slowing down and looking for turkeys, turkey necks, heads, backs, splayed wings, feathers ruffled, etc. I occasionally bump a bird, but not multiples of birds. I call when the glasses are close to my eyes, and if answered next call I'm looking at where I'm callin to.
I only move fast when I know where they are, and am pretty sure nothing else is gonna bust or give me away to my quarry. Other than that I'm movin slower than meltin ice and gettin the job done !
GOOD LUCK, GOD BLESS, AND STAY SAFE !
HOOSIER HUNTER CUSTOM CALLS
MOSSY OAK PRO STAFF