I normally try to keep my posts short. I was alone and do not have a tripod for my inexpensive camera so it was a turkey picture or none at all. Prior to joining this forum, I wouldn't have even thought to take a pic or even had a camera with me. The camera is a hand me down.
It's been hard hunting in my area of NY. Very few birds are sounding off even on the roost. I've calling in hens almost every time out. This bird was started with a Quaker Boy box and finished with one of StevePA's custom Kee kee extreme diaphrams. I believe he was the same bird I was working on opening day 5/1 when 2 gentleman decided to walk past me(even though I whislted & them back) toward the bird who was working an open strutting area. Of course the bird shut up. I ran into them on Saturday 5/2 when with my son. They actually stalked in on us then accused me of using an electronic caller. I showed them Steve's Kee kee and gave them a demo-hate to say it but those 2 morons don't belong in the turkey woods. After starting that bird with the box I wasn't even excited because he sounded so far off and I knew of the strutting zone(looks like a park) at the base of this hollow. I snuck down a trail and he gobbled twice more coming towards me. I knew I couldn't go much further w/o hitting that open area and was looking for a suitable tree when he sounded off again at about 150 yards. I set up gave him a couple soft yelps and he fired right back at about 80 yards on the other side of some brush. He came up but swung wide left instead of where I thought. He stepped behind two large trees which gave me the opportunity to adjust but he stopped. He came out on the same side, stopped and started putting soft looking for the hen. I couldn't call because he'd have me pegged. He started slow back towards where he came from and even though it was 40 yards I knew it was now or never for this bird. I had extensively patterned the gun/choke/shell at 37 yards and knew it would be ok at 40. Put the red dot on his wattles and squeezed. He went down in a heap and didn't flop for a couple minutes. It least 3 pellets right in the head, more in the neck and one flier through right drum stick. He ate real good chunked up, marinated, on grill with tin foil over rack burners on low-med.
I feel like I'm at work, hey I am. I never written so much, I think, even at work. I have surgery scheduled for Friday so my season is probably over. Best of luck to all those still hunting.