How to Talk to Hens???

Ask questions of and offer advice to fellow turkey hunters
dam3391
 
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RE: How to Talk to Hens???

Postby dam3391 » January 21st, 2011, 9:47 am

that was just funny eggshell!

I called a couple of hens in last year by mimicking exactly what they did.  If they yelped 3 times I yelped. If they clucked I clucked.  If they went with rasp, I was raspy.  They were so pissed they came looking for a fight.  It was quite comical.  Unfortunately they didn't bring a male friend for backup.

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shaman
 
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RE: How to Talk to Hens???

Postby shaman » January 24th, 2011, 12:36 am

dam3391:   As much as I loved eggshell's answer, I think yours is a bit more sound.  Remember when you were a kid and somebody started repeating everything you said?  Made you mad, didn't it?

If you listen to birds, not just turkeys, exact repetition seems to be the thing that triggers an aggressive response.  My guess is that it comes from deep down in the brain. If you hear back exactly what you're sending out, it makes you mad.   I can be sitting out back in the morning, sipping my coffee and see this played out.  Little bird comes and lights down on a branch and chirps.  Some distance off, some other bird calls back.  The two get into a calling match and before you know it, the two are scrapping and pecking at each other and finally one of them has to fly off.

The key to making it aggressive, if turkeys are like other birds, is to come back right away-- even walk on the other hen's calls, and give her exactly what she's laying on you.  If there is a delay in honoring the hen's call, what you're saying is that you understand the hen's out there and that you're giving her a pass to walk on through as long as she keeps her distance.  With no delay in the response, you're telling her you are willing to fight.

Now, this may or may not be a good idea.  What I mean to say is that if you call that other hen out and she's not in the mood to fight, she may make a wide arc around you or even turn around and go the other way.  She's sizing you up on your disposition, and capabilities.  She's also got to figure in her own capability.  All this she's trying to cypher out of your call.

We used to have a bunch on here that used to make fun of folks that talked about "henned-up " turkeys.  It's for real.  There really is a phenomenon like that.  And busting through this problem can be insurmountable given the turkey hunter's ability to dissect the problem and make the right call to respond.

I offer another way;  I'm not all that good a caller.  I admit that I've gotten into this and said something to the hen and 40 yards off, she's turned around and gone off in another way, leaving the gobbler 60 yards back in the woods never coming close.  In fact just about every time I try and pull one of these fancy tricks, I end up getting a lesson in the folly of pride.

What I like to do is offer up the disappearing hen trick.  First, I show that I'm ignoring the other hens.  I make calls that show I can't hear the other hen.  This is easier than trying to match her.  In essence, I'm transmitting a scenario where there is no communication going on.  I don't mean saying "I don't hear you!"-- like a taunt.  I mean calling like you just don't hear the other hen.    Then, I start feeding a little.  Clucks,  purrs, and scratching.  If I have somebody along, I have them cluck and scratch too.  We're just a couple of little hens, out enjoying our morning meal.  The opposing hen will then have to call to tell us she's coming, and warn us of her approach.  We continue feeding like we don't hear her.  She comes closer.  We shut up.   "Poof!"  We're gone.  Did we run off?  Were we scared off?  Did we just go behind a fold in the land where she doesn't hear us?  Silence. 

The hen comes though, looking for us. The gobbler comes trailing behind. a  few minutes later.. .  Boom!

At least that's the theory.  It works once in a while.  I called one in for SuperCore last season that way.  The point is that this method might be better way to go if you're just a beginner and can't do all the fancy calling. 
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WillowRidgeCalls
 
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RE: How to Talk to Hens???

Postby WillowRidgeCalls » January 24th, 2011, 7:32 pm

That is very good advice shaman, and the secret to that is to be able to tell the difference between young hen talk and old hen talk. If that is a young hen with a gobbler following and she starts to talk to you and you come back at her with a boss hen voice, she will turn tail and run and tow that gobbler along behind, but if you ignore her and keep soft talking she'll come in because she's a young bird looking for company and she is testing you to see what you are. Now if it's an old hen with the gobbler in tow and you talk back to her softly she will ignore you and keep on moving through, but if you stand up to her and copy her she won't tolorate that and come in to set you straight. It's no different in the human race. Your 16/17 year old daughters are very respectful while the parents are around, but when they aren't they are looking for a little fun, if they are walking down the street headed for the park with their boyfriend and mom is in the park they tend to go someplace eles, but if their girlfriends are there they drag the boyfriend along and join up with them and if mom shows up they head off someplace eles. As a successful hunter we have to be able to judge that and learn when to be aggressive and when not to be, listen to the hens.
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kygobbler
 
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RE: How to Talk to Hens???

Postby kygobbler » January 24th, 2011, 8:22 pm

I agree with what you all said but lets just say the hen is at a place where you can not see her. How are you suppost to know which style to use. Do you start with introductories and see if she cuts you off or what. I've tried both and it always seem I should have done the opposite. One time there was a group of 4 or 5 hens and one gobbler, I went the nice route of calling and had a young hen come to within a foot of me but the rest of the group never paid me any attention.
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shaman
 
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RE: How to Talk to Hens???

Postby shaman » January 25th, 2011, 12:40 am

None of this is infallible.  It's kind of like you are in a strange country, where everyone speaks a strange language.  All you hear are noises with no meaning.  They know what they're saying to each other, but you don't.  Somehow you've got to make the right noise that will get one of these strangers to come over and look at you.

This all kind of reminds me of the time my buddy came by at 2 AM with an ice pick.  John was a WWII vet.  He had been in the Bulge, and had a pretty gnarly time of it.  Once in a while he'd go a little nuts.  One night, he had been drinking heavily at the Vernon Manor and got it in his head it was 40 years ago and he was stuck behind enemy lines.  He spent a good part of the evening sneaking around Walnut Hills and Clifton Heights trying to evade capture on his way back to his own lines. 

Somewhere in the middle of this, he decided he was starting to sober up and needed to find a bar.   Of course he was behind the lines, so everyone spoke German, right?  He goes into the bar and walks up to the bartender.

"Scotch, bitte." ( Scotch, please.) He says to the barkeep, who he thinks is a kraut.  The bartender thinks he hears him right and serves him Scotch and bitters.  John tries it and nearly throws up on the bartender.  A fight ensues.  John spies an ice pick on the bar and grabs it.  Luckily everyone left him alone and he was able to escape the bar before the police or the Gestapo or whatever showed up.  For some reason he figured my place was safe and he eventually showed up there with this wild story.

I guess I've strayed pretty far from the subject, but it was a good story, and I hope you get the point. None of this is a for-sure thing. . . You may think you're sounding like a  sexy hen, but to the turkeys you may be coming off like a drunk in the bushes with an ice pick.
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kygobbler
 
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RE: How to Talk to Hens???

Postby kygobbler » January 25th, 2011, 3:26 am

Shaman, that is one reason why I like seeing you back on here. You are one of the few that can go off the topic and tell a story thats completely about something else and answer the question. I always enjoy reading your stories they are great and keep them coming.
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shaman
 
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RE: How to Talk to Hens???

Postby shaman » January 25th, 2011, 4:04 am

John was usually the best sort of fellow you'd ever want at camp, but you didn't want to put a shotgun in his hands-- it'd give him the shakes something awful.   
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Duke0002
 
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RE: How to Talk to Hens???

Postby Duke0002 » January 25th, 2011, 6:47 am

This is a super thread.  Thanks, guys.  

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kenturkey89
 
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RE: How to Talk to Hens???

Postby kenturkey89 » January 25th, 2011, 7:16 am

This is a great thread, guys. I had no idea that I would receive the amount of informative responses that I have. Thanks very much.
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longbeard.386
 
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RE: How to Talk to Hens???

Postby longbeard.386 » January 25th, 2011, 3:42 pm

Eggshell,
Offended. Hell, I was rolling on the floor by the time I finished reading you "tirade". It was funny. Nah, I was just talking about what I've seen in the turkey woods. early season the hens are still settling score and jockeying in the pecking order. late in the season they start to get shy. It's much easier to spook a hen late in the season...but that's when I do some of my loudest cutt'in (for the gobblers). Again...offended(?)-nope, not at all.
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