Even in the depths of summer, turkey hunters think back to a gobbler that just wouldn’t commit to their calling. Why do birds hang up? There are myriad reasons. However, some insight from our good friend Mark Drury might help you avoid noncommittal turkeys next season.
“If I get a turkey that hangs up, I’m going to change what I’m doing,” Mark said. “If I was calling a lot, I call a little. If I was calling sparingly, I call a lot. If I was quiet, I get loud, and vice versa. Something I’m doing is hanging him up, so I do an about-face and give him the opposite. More often than not, that is to tone down my calling and call less. Chances are, I’ve been calling pretty hard at him. You’ll see us use this switch-up tactic all the time on our Longbeard Madness turkey hunting videos.
“Often, turkeys hang up because of the situation. They’ll be with hens all morning, and then those hens slip off 40 to 50 yards so he can’t see them, so he starts gobbling. You’ll work him for a while, and then, all of a sudden, he’ll shut up again. That usually means a hen got jealous and came back to him. It happens all the time.
“There are so many hens nowadays, it seems gobblers get henned up in February and stay that way till July.”