will a Turkey pattern you?

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will a Turkey pattern you?

Postby shadow » May 6th, 2008, 11:45 am

Spring season in Conn., opens on Wedneday the 7th, I plan on getting a Turkey some time during the coming week, however, if I shoot one, will they then stay away from that area or can I hunt the same location to hopefully then get another?

cuttin man
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RE: will a Turkey pattern you?

Postby cuttin man » May 6th, 2008, 12:28 pm

I would say no but they can associate certain things with danger.  If you find that everyone hunting your parcel of land is setting up in the same area, overcalling, or just flat out have no clue how to hunt switch it up.  I've found in these situations by approaching from a different direction and being different that you will increase your chances and also beat the crowd.  Keep me posted on your season,  I'm done here in N.Y. but I'm still going out with buddies.  Good luck.[:)]

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RE: will a Turkey pattern you?

Postby Cut N Run » May 6th, 2008, 1:20 pm

We have an area at our lease that is traditionally a strut zone because it is the higest point for a long ways on a big flat that overlooks several creek bottoms. It also happens to have power lines that cross it, giving the birds a place to see and be seen for a long way right in the middle of some seriously thick woods.  The Turkeys ALWAYS hang out there, but tend to get shy once the shooting starts.  On guy probably over-hunted it this season and got busted by turkeys a few too many times hunting there and now the Turkeys have shifted their zone of operations away from that area (of course most of the hens are on the nest now so there is less traffic than earlier in the season).  We still see birds cross through that area, but we seldom see mature Gobblers strutting there any time of day like usual.
 So, I would say Turkeys can and do pattern an area if they know they are being hunted there, especially if they witness other birds getting shot and only hear calls coming from the same area. 
Mix it up a little, don't overcall, Hunt from different areas.  Good luck.
Luck Counts, good or bad

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RE: will a Turkey pattern you?

Postby silvestris » May 6th, 2008, 2:02 pm

If your behavior gives them something to pattern, they will pattern.
Why be good when you can B-Mobile or Spin & Strut.

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RE: will a Turkey pattern you?

Postby Gobblernut » May 7th, 2008, 4:45 am

Beg to differ a little.. An area where I am hunting there has been three birds taken from there all within 200 yds of each other 2 were taken from sitting against the same rock.. I do believe that overcalling can hurt ya.. Give them a couple of days they'll return...

You can't kill'em sittin on the couch!!!!

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RE: will a Turkey pattern you?

Postby Dank » May 7th, 2008, 6:35 am

I tend to agree with Gobblernut. While I think you can definately run turkeys out of an area, I believe it takes alot of pressure (I'm talking seriously harassing them). I killed both of my birds this year sitting in the exact same place. They just don't seem to be as sensitive as deer to hunting pressure, although I am the only person that hunts where I do so they probably recieve less pressure than some of the birds you may be hunting.
Failure is often our best teacher.

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RE: will a Turkey pattern you?

Postby STEROIDCHICKEN » May 7th, 2008, 7:09 am

in some situations, i believe they can pattern you. we've got an area where everyone and there brothers tend to flock towards come hunting season. after a while, the birds shut down totally...they are still in the area but just not responsive to any calling. other areas where i hunt, i kill birds time after time with no hesitation. i try to keep these spots secretive. not over-calling and tromping around everywhere. i know where the birds roost and where they want to go after fly-down..very little pressure. i have even taken birds where the entire flock is out in front of me when shooting and have always been afraid that the other birds would remember, but i don't reckon they do. the very same evening, they are back in there. hope this helps.  
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RE: will a Turkey pattern you?

Postby shadow » May 7th, 2008, 2:26 pm

Thanks for the responses, there is no hunting pressure at all where i hunt so I will attempt to take one and go back to the same spot again.
I can always move around a bit to different areas but I am glad that where there is no real pressure they will go back to the areas, I will test this out.

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RE: will a Turkey pattern you?

Postby Fan Club » May 14th, 2008, 11:12 am

will a Turkey pattern you?


But let me clarify. I believe roost areas are much more sensitive to pressure and subject to patterning than other areas that birds frequent and pass through during the day. Some examples:

1. On our 450 acre Missouri lease, my father and his friend, both in their 70s, primarily hunt a 30 acre timber close to camp. Additionally, they use an ATV to get up a 200 ft. ridge every morning at 5:00 a.m. Early in the week the timber is full of roosting, gobbling birds and affords them shot opportunities. By the end of the week there are only a few birds roosting there and the ones that do don't gobble. At this point I am usually on the scoreboard and taking them to some of my honey holes in an effort to get them birds. I have watched this phenomenon for 8 seasons now. This is clearly an example of hunters providing a pattern and turkeys heeding it.

2. I missed a bird one day and shot another the next at exactly the same spot on the lease, at nearly the same time (hour after fly down)

3. My brother in law and I both shot gobblers on my property, sitting under the same tree, one week apart.

The last two examples suggest that birds range around and do not remember occurances from a day or week to the next. I tend to agree with Silvestris, if you provide a pattern, the turkeys will pick up on it. But like I said, I also think roost areas are more sensitive that others in this regard.

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RE: will a Turkey pattern you?

Postby JPH » May 15th, 2008, 5:15 am

To me "patterning" implies some degree of reasoning. In that sense, no I do not believe a turkey will "pattern" you. A deer? Yes, I think they are able to put 2 and 2 together and avoid you. But a turkey is not that complex.
That is not to say that a turkey will not respond negatively to pressure. Turkeys have highly developed survival insctints. They will react to the unnatural by avoiding it. For example loud noises make them nervous, so they will move away from them. But IMO, they are not capeable of making the connection between the sight/sound of your vehicle and that camoflaged lump with a 12 ga. boomstick, leaning at the base of a tree.
When I was a kid, we thought turkeys had almost supernatural abilities to figure us out. I remember crossing an open field with my step-father, bent over end to end like a cow (I had to be the rump). There wern't even any birds in sight! But we were convinced that they were watching us unseen and would never come back if they saw humans. Silly!
I now regularly hunt next to an Amish farm. Every morning, just after sunrise, the boys have to go into the pasture and bring in the horses. This has gone on for years, but the gobblers still strut there until they get run off. I've killed two of them in early morning hunts right on that fence. 
Do your best to make a small footprint while you're hunting turkeys and they will be turkeys. In other words, they will come to you when they are darn good and ready.


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