MD Turkey2 09 017In any type of shooting, closer is usually better, but not with a shotgun on a spring gobbler hunt. Most turkey guns are tightly choked, maybe ultra-tightly, so that they throw a dense pattern at 40 yards. Unfortunately, this means that a shot at ten yards or a bit beyond yields a pattern the size of a baseball, and hitting that bobbing head at close range is downright difficult. Add the fact that you may be sitting uncomfortably against a tree or sighting down the barrel at an awkward angle and missing becomes incredibly easy, as this video from Real Outdoors TV shows. Three quick tips can help in this department:

  1. Cut or alarm puck with a diaphragm caller when the bird is 25 yards out. This usually makes it extend its neck with a gobbler or stand erect for a perfect head shot.
  2. Consider a red dot scope or regular scope of very low magnification.
  3. Before calling, always swing your shotgun over your full view to make sure that you can sight properly. Then begin calling.

Now, watch this big tom walk into a hunter’s lap; you won’t believe how it turns out.

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Joe Byers
Joe Byers has more than 1,000 magazine articles in print and is currently a field editor with Whitetail Journal, Predator Xtreme, Whitetails Unlimited, Crossbow Revolution, and African Hunting Journal magazines. He’s spent the last three decades depicting the thrill of the chase and photographing the majesty of all things wild. Byers is a member of the Professional Outdoor Media Association and numerous other professional and conservation organizations.