to decoy or not to decoy?

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to decoy or not to decoy?

Postby nhtrkybstr » April 30th, 2009, 11:28 am

Hey everyone!
I posted an earlier question about decoys. I'm taking my brother and his buddy out on Sunday, and should I go with a single hen or rely on my woodsmanship and calling. I'm a little nervous having toms get shy around them. I really don't know which way to go on this. 
You can't kill'em sittin' on the couch!

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RE: to decoy or not to decoy?

Postby trkynut54 » April 30th, 2009, 11:37 am

That's up to you, personally I don't use them, I like to let them "look" for that hen.
Don't hunt harder hunt smarter

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mark hay
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RE: to decoy or not to decoy?

Postby mark hay » April 30th, 2009, 12:09 pm


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RE: to decoy or not to decoy?

Postby Everyday Hunter » April 30th, 2009, 2:26 pm

I agree with trkynut and mark. My experience has been that a stationary hen deke hurts as much as it helps when hunting in the woods. In a field, it might help a little more than it hurts. The gobbler gets nervous when he doesn't see any movement. Back when dekes first came out, the industry started with hens. Some of the early ones were homemade paper machê jobs. Then hunters noticed that gobblers sometimes failed to see the deke, so people began using a second hen. Then jakes were added to bring the element of jealousy into play. Next, it seems that the big thing was a strutting gobbler. Now, movement is being added.

But plenty of hunters, especially when hunting in the woods, make the gobbler hunt for the hen. Also, when hunting the woods it pays to travel light.

When [url=""]"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.

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RE: to decoy or not to decoy?

Postby Redbelly » April 30th, 2009, 3:10 pm

They do work for hunters.  I have never had one work for me.  I haven't used one in a long time, not to say I won'y ever.  I have success without them.  I get a lot of satisfaction thinking I have used just my skills alone to bring him in.

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RE: to decoy or not to decoy?

Postby NEStrut » May 1st, 2009, 8:38 am

Like trkynut said, it's completely up to you.
Personally, if I'm in the woods, I don't use a decoy very often, to make them come in looking. And, because I try to be as mobile as possible.
But, if I'm in a field, I do use them sometimes. Sometimes it seems to help me.
Whatever you decide, be confident in your decision. It doesn't help, if you're mentally second guessing yourself before you even enter the woods.
Good Luck, and hope to hear about a bird next week. Whether you use the decoy or not.

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RE: to decoy or not to decoy?

Postby steadyeddie » May 1st, 2009, 7:57 pm

I have used them and had success and not used them and had success. I have had the poorest excuse for a decoy and killed a monster and had the best almost and not had success. I key is have they been educated to calls and decoys, and have the birds been pressured or not. Most public places had alot of pressure on them. Even private places have pressure put on them and even poaching has educated them.  I have made the worst sounding hen one would ever imagined and killed a monster and have called with Walter Parrott style and not even seen a bird. What time of the turkey season are you hunting, with toms free and no mating taking place, henned up toms, or the later part. Or have they shut up do to the cold rain and flooding. Hens have to renest and keep toms going. There are just to many variables when turkey hunting. So I like private land, non pressured, and a sunny day. But rainy days are good on private land with a blind and time to wait.
This year I guided a kid to his first gobbler and it was second biggest ever killed on our farm over the last 37 years. Then he finds the biggest arrowhead ever collected on the farm. I told him he was a blessed young man. Then last Satudary I killed a 26 lber with decoys. So the last three turkeys killed on our farm we used decoys. To out of a blind and one not using a blind. The last one which I killed I used the jealousy factor to kill the big boy. I had a primos strutting gobbler and a real fantail that I had already made yrs. earlier, and an old hen decoys and a primos new hen. I placed the gobbler on top of the hen which I used an arrow to set her on, and drove the arrow to the ground only left  8 inches showing and placed the hen decoy on it. Then place the gobbler dek on top. I  made up my own fan which I mentioned earlier, and cut out a small half moon piece of half inch plywood and painted it black. The decoy already has a hole to place the artificial fan or one of their holder and you put your tail feathers from a previous kill in each hole and then put it on the dek.Believe me the real fan works super and just a slight breeze will make it come alive. I called a gobbler over 500 yds away and once he saw the dek on top of the hen, he made up his mind to kick his butt. Only I shot him before he could damage my tailfeathers. He actually took my breath away he was strutting so much. What a beautiful picture he made. I got the jealously idea from watching Jay Gregory's hunting show where they bow hunt gobblers and shoot them at 5 yds. to 10 yds. Give it a try and see what happens. Oh and the number one thing that will get you a bird is Patience.

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RE: to decoy or not to decoy?

Postby wingbone » May 2nd, 2009, 12:23 am

We got one bird this year when two gobblers idled right up to a single hen decoy. We got one good two year bird without dekes and we had a good two year bird freak out and run off alarm putting after seeing a full strut gobbler deke.

Mixed results with a mixed up response while having a blast learning.

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RE: to decoy or not to decoy?

Postby ridgerunner » May 3rd, 2009, 6:26 pm

I almost never use them in the woods. In fields I think a bird expects to see something. I am trying now to decide what to do. It is late season and I am trying to get my wife her second bird. Due to health problems we hunt fields from a blind. She got a good bird the other day but they were real spooky. We saw 2 other long beards, but also some hens, these long beards were probably 2 year olds and not around the hens. I kind of figure they may not know the big boy was gone yet. I am going to try some of the Renzo hens  with the Jake tail and see what happens. We are going on the 5th and I'll let you know the results.

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RE: to decoy or not to decoy?

Postby woodswise13 » May 4th, 2009, 9:09 am

well this morning i had three gobblers run across a 250yrd cut cornfield on a dead run till they saw my deke then they stopped at about 45yds and wouldnt come an inch closer they then walked off into the woods all i could do was sit and listen to then gobble each one farther and farther away.... well one things for sure i wont have them set up in that field on tuesday morning...


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