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Fall Turkey Calling: Sounds You Need to Know

silhouetteSteve Hickoff is one of the country’s foremost fall turkey hunting experts. Here, he discusses some fall calls you’ll hear in the woods and can use to pull birds in.

Roost talk: Roosted hens softly cluck, purr and yelp. Gobblers yelp and gobble, age depending. You’ll likely hear more fall turkey talk as birds converse right before and just after flydown than at any other time, with the exception of a post-scatter call-back session.

Kee-kee and Kee-kee run: The kee-kee is the maturing lost whistle of the young turkey in fall. The “run” part is a yelp or yelps added on the end.

Plain hen cluck and yelp: Hen clucks are typically high-pitched. Hen yelp cadence is steady. Lost yelps are longer, often louder.

Plain gobbler cluck and yelp: Gobble clucks are low-pitched. Yelps are slower, often three notes.

Contented and fighting purrs: Purrs indicate feeding contentment or spacing tolerance while eating and even aggression while fighting. Some are subtle; some loud. Fall gobblers often purr while fighting after flydown.

Gobbling: It’s the same one you hear in spring. Fall jakes often tag a gobble-in-progress at the end of a kee-kee run.

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