Decision Time: MRI Me ASAP

In this interactive feature, Editor Brian Lovett shares a scenario from his 20+ years of turkey hunting, asking "What would you do?"
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Brian Lovett
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Decision Time: MRI Me ASAP

Postby Brian Lovett » May 2nd, 2011, 8:13 am

In "Decision Time," Editor Brian Lovett will share a scenario from his 20-plus years hunting turkeys. Each hinges on a critical decision. Post what choice you would have made, then see how things actually turned out.


No, I hadn't scouted. How could I have? I live seven-plus hours from northern Missouri, and I'd driven down on a Friday night to hunt the weekend.

I had friends there, of course, and they'd provided me with the MRI (most recent information). We planned to set up at a small blind in a corner pasture where a gobbler had been strutting regularly. My buddy said the turkey was usually there by 7 a.m. and never had hens. That sounded good to me.

The next morning dawned cool and cloudy, and the only gobbling turkey was a country mile away. Two bearded hens pitched off their roost and sailed right into my decoy, but no gobbler showed. Right after flydown, however, a turkey hammered from the opposite end of the field. Loud yelping let me know he had plenty of ladies with him.

Dang it! The breeding flock was hidden by a pasture ridge, and there was no good way for me to approach the birds. And after a few minutes, it became apparent the turkeys were headed the other way.

I could attempt an end-around, but it might take more than a half-hour for me to get into the timber and circle toward the birds. Or, I could slither up the hill and try to sneak within range of the retreating turkeys. I could also stick to the plan and wait in the makeshift blind, hoping the breeding flock drifted toward me or the 7 a.m. strutter appeared.

The Missouri minutes were ticking away.

What would you have done? Post your decision below.

Click here for Lovett's decision.

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RE: Decision Time: MRI Me ASAP

Postby educote » May 2nd, 2011, 12:31 pm

It depends on how much time you had that day and on that trip. The most valuable information is the location of the gobbler. If only a short time, I'd be more aggressive seeking the flock. If days to hunt, I'd probably slow down a bit and give it more time.


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Cut N Run
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RE: Decision Time: MRI Me ASAP

Postby Cut N Run » May 2nd, 2011, 4:31 pm

You didn't say what phase of the season you were hunting in. If it was early, then good luck getting that guy from his girlfriends. If it was mid- to late season, they might tow him around a bit before he decided to seek some fresh opportunities & you'd get a good chance. Late season I just don't see flocks of hens much.

If they were headed off in the other direction, going for broke might cost you & spook the birds. If you planned to hunt the next day as well, they might fall back into a more regular routine. If the property isn't really big, I'd say wait him out & you might get a crack at him later in the day.

Luck Counts, good or bad

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