Chat With Calling Champ Scott Ellis!

The country's best-known hunters and callers are here to answer your questions. Ask them turkey hunting tips, or just chat about their favorite hunts.
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Brian Lovett
 
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Chat With Calling Champ Scott Ellis!

Postby Brian Lovett » February 19th, 2014, 5:12 pm

Hey all. The season is getting close, and excitement is ramping up. To help fuel the addiction, we're bringing back our popular "At the Roost" forum feature, which will let you chat directly with a well-known turkey hunter. Our first guest is one of the best-known competition callers and hunters out there: our good buddy Scott Ellis, of Florida. Scott won the 2013 Grand Nationals Head-to-Head championship and has consistently placed among the top spots in the Grand Nationals Senior Open, the Super Bowl of turkey calling. He's also an incredibly knowledgeable turkey hunter. He'll be on hand Monday, Feb. 24, through Friday, Feb. 28 to answer your questions about calling, strategies or anything else turkey. Join the conversation!

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WillowRidgeCalls
 
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Location: Reeseville Wisconsin

Re: Chat With Calling Champ Scott Ellis!

Postby WillowRidgeCalls » February 20th, 2014, 1:18 pm

:mrgreen:
WillowRidgeCalls
WI Youth & LTH Mentor
Dodge Co. NWTF
Scott

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Ben Sobieck
 
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Re: Chat With Calling Champ Scott Ellis!

Postby Ben Sobieck » February 24th, 2014, 3:23 pm

I'll get it started. Hey Scott, what's the best style of diaphragm call for a novice to learn the basic principles of mouth calling? And if someone really doesn't sound very good, is it OK just to use box or pot calls in the woods? Or is it wise to strive to master the mouth call? Thanks!

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eddie234
 
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Location: Northern Panhandle of WV

Re: Chat With Calling Champ Scott Ellis!

Postby eddie234 » February 24th, 2014, 3:37 pm

here's one, This will be my seventh year turkey hunting. I've taken three birds so far, I don't have a large area to hunt so I'm not a run and gun kinda guy. On a few occasions I've set up to call and after a few call sequences I figured there were no birds coming in and got up to move only to be busted. I've learned to wait for a while after my last sequence to move. What is your normal set up and "waiting" period?
Twitter: @edvogler
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scott ellis1974
 
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Re: Chat With Calling Champ Scott Ellis!

Postby scott ellis1974 » February 24th, 2014, 6:42 pm

As for the 1st question. I highly recommend a raspy type mouth call for a turkey hunters first. It's easier to get realism with a call with 2.5 to 3 reeds with the top reed cut. Cutting, clucking and cackling is easier if the top reed can vibrate. I'd be partial answering this but will, try any of my designs with Woodhaven Custom Calls. The Scott Ellis Signature, Raspy Red Reactor or Yellow Venom. You wont be disappointed. Depending on the brand I would also recommend a combo cut, bat wing or split V.

How long do I sit in an area on a "blind call" set up? If I know turkeys are frequenting the area, I will sit as long as it takes(HOURS). Calling every 15 minutes or so. If the pressure is fairly low, I will give excited yelping and cutting sequences. If the area around you get's pressured. I will simulate feeding hen's with cluck & purring, soft yelps and whines and scratching in the leaves. Patience kills turkeys!

Scott Ellis

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Treerooster
 
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Location: Colorado

Re: Chat With Calling Champ Scott Ellis!

Postby Treerooster » February 24th, 2014, 10:55 pm

Ben, good to see you posting.

Thanks for taking the time to chat with us Scott.

I have a 2 part question for you.

I hunt a different states every season and some areas I have never been to before. Many times I don't have much of an idea on where the turkeys are hanging out. I go in cold in other words and roosting can be very important to me.

Rios and Merriam's usually will gobble regularly on the roost, but Easterns are another story. In some areas Easters do gobble somewhat regular in the evening but in a lot of areas the hardly gobble at all. I have used coyote howls, owl hoots, crow calls, and turkey calls to try and get them to gobble. I have also tried to just listen for birds flying up but you have to be fairly close already to hear that.

Here are my questions;

1) Do you have any tips on how to get a stubborn gobbler to sound off in the evening? Either just before flying up to roost or when he is already in the tree?

2) Do you know or have any theories as to why Easterns will gobble pretty good in the evening in some areas and hardly at all in other areas?


I am going ice fishing tomorrow, if the storm that's blowing in ain't too bad anyways.

While I am sitting there starin' down that little hole in the ice I will try and cook up another question for you. :D

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As far as this turkey thing......I know enough...to know enough...that I don't know enough

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scott ellis1974
 
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Re: Chat With Calling Champ Scott Ellis!

Postby scott ellis1974 » February 25th, 2014, 8:48 am

I would agree with your Rio and Merriam statements. They tend to gobble much better than Easterns on a consistent basis. Especially in the evenings on the roost. My exprience as you stated, with 25 years of hunting easterns is it's hit or miss at best. Osceola's are even worst than easterns. Growing up hunting Osceola's I never put any stock in roosting birds becasue their evening roost gobbling was so infrequent. I would try roosting them in areas I knew held birds and not hear a peep. Then return to the exact same spot the next morning and they would gobble their brains out.

Now to your questions.


1)Do you have any tips on how to get a stubborn gobbler to sound off in the evening? Either just before flying up to roost or when he is already in the tree?

I will sometimes try an off the wall locator such as a mallard hail call or even a goose call. A barred owl scream and laughing sequence will sometimes do the trick. Also a loooong aggravated crow sequence will sometimes provoke an evening gobble. I mean get nasty with your crow call, not just the basic caw caw caw.

2) Do you know or have any theories as to why Easterns will gobble pretty good in the evening in some areas and hardly at all in other areas?

One of my theories is simply the fact that they may have gobbled hard or bred heavily the entire day using up much of their energy.(Remember how much weight a gobbler will lose in the springtime, he isnt eating much :) I feel he is just tired and does not feel like gobbling much. Also he could have roosted with hen's. Just as a morning roost gobbler will not gobble as often when he has a harem with him. Heavy hunting pressure can play a part in his lack gobbling frequency in the evenings as well.

If they gobble heavily on the roost in the evening, maybe he has been looking for hen's all day and not had success and he is trying to attract any hen's within earshot.

Thanks for chiming in!

Scott

timbrhuntr
 
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Re: Chat With Calling Champ Scott Ellis!

Postby timbrhuntr » February 25th, 2014, 10:29 am

Hi Scott. I have your last DVD and am still working on the clear front end and a purr but that's not my question.

In the area I hunt their are 2 groups of birds that seem to hang around together the entire season. In the group there are 1 or 2 big toms that are at least 4 years old. These birds roost together and fly down together in the morning. They then hang out together all day. I would love to get a shot at one of those big toms but they never seem to leave the main group. In the group there are several hens, jakes and toms. These birds will fight among themselves and come to calling or a decoy but the big boys just parade around with hens. Do you have any idea how to get at those toms ? Also I can only hunt until 7 P.M.

Thanks Tim

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scott ellis1974
 
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Re: Chat With Calling Champ Scott Ellis!

Postby scott ellis1974 » February 26th, 2014, 2:31 am

I would try employing a strutter decoy and gobble to the mature bird flock you speak of. Of course be wary of gobbling if there are other hunters in your area. Also try setting up as tight as you can to the roost site. Make it easy for them to get to your set up. On the mixed flock, try calling to the hen's and get there attention. Start with some basic yelping and clucking to engage them in a conversation. If you get them talking and coming keep up the basic stuff and hopefully they drag the toms over with them. If this doesn't get there attention trying getting aggressive with some hard cutting and try to challenge the dominant hen. If none of the above works, try kee keeing to them. Many times if you can get the attention of the older hen's, their maternal instinct will take over and they will coming looking for the "lost" jenny. Lastly if none of this works, pattern the birds and set up on any established travel route they may have. It's not as fun as calling them in but remember you're turkey hunting not turkey calling.

Scott Ellis

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Brian Lovett
 
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Re: Chat With Calling Champ Scott Ellis!

Postby Brian Lovett » February 26th, 2014, 3:30 pm

Hey Scott, here's a question: Can you describe the process you use to break in a new diaphragm call? Many folks suggest that you should only run it sparingly before it's broken in. I've also heard people suggest that you let the reeds stick together to "season" until the call is ready for the woods or stage. What do you do?

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