Its Over.....

6.5_sWv

Beginner
Mar 5, 2019
142
57
Since I still had a 2nd spring turkey tag, Ive hunted a few mornings. I have kinda had the attitude that if I could take a 2nd bird, that would great, but if I didn't then it would just be nice to be outside in the beautiful spring woods. Yesterday morning before work I went to a farm that Ive taken birds on before, and this season, I have hunted several days but I didn't hear a gobbler since during my pre season scouting. I started at my normal dawn listening post and just like many mornings this year, I heard no gobbles or any turkey talk from the limb. I spent the first hour of daylight sipping coffee and just watching a little corner of a field thats tucked away where gobblers have liked to strut in the past. I watched a skunk do mill around and do its thing, watched the sun rise, and reflecting on past successful hunts, and the splendor the springtime woods.

Since I had to be at work at 10am, I was going to quit hunting at about 8:30am. As I was working my way back to the truck, I was making calls about every 50yds trying to elicit a response from a gobbler or any turkey. All morning, I had been fairly low key with my calling, but near the end, I figured Id go for broke and really get excited with it. I started several excited strings of yelps, and cutts, and wouldn't you know it, I got answered back by a likewise excited hen, followed by a gobble. I looked at my watch, it was 8:12am. I decided I needed to see this through but I was going to need to make a move first. I was already at the highest point on this farm and the turkeys were below me, and I assumed they were near the old hay house where there is another small field. I began a several hundred yard move and was using the terrain and foliage to conceal myself. I called again en route, and the gobbler answered and he was more interested this time. I got set up within a hundred yards of where I thought the gobbler was, and called again, but got nothing back in return. I called again and nothing. I was scanning the small hay field looking for movement, when I caught sight of a hen, then another, and another, then a strutting gobbler, then another hen, and a jake. He had a whole haram and wannabe with him. I called again and he gobbled and the hens yelped back, and started moving my way. I put the call down and got the gun up and just waited. The hens were leading the strutting gobbler right to me. When the gobbler got to about 50 or 55 yds I put my finger on the trigger but I realized if I pulled the trigger I was going to kill a hen or possibly that jake. Since I had a good backstop for the bullet, I was going to use the rifle barrel, and I figured if I didnt kill him I wouldnt get any collateral damage and kill an innocent bystander bird. I placed the cross hairs on his wing butts and squeezed.

The gobbler went down and the rest of the birds just stood there. I was almost in shock that this all panned out like it did, so I took a sec to collect myself. Of course when I stood up, the turkeys still standing there quickly flew, run, and got out of there. I walked over the the gobbler, then it hit me.... the season is over. Don't get me wrong, I was happy, but also sad a bit if that makes sense.
The gobbler had a beard which measured out at 9 and 7/8in but his spurs were very short in relation to his beard with the 1 just under 3/4in and 1 exactly 3/4in. This is the 5th gobbler Ive killed on this farm and all of them have had decent beards, but none of them have had spurs over 7/8in.

For those that care, the call in the picture is a Pecker Wrecker Physco Hen made by Kevin Farr of GA. Its a metal surface set in a yellowheart pot. The surface is claimed to be a proprietary callmaker's secret sauce type of thing, and when I ordered it, I asked him what it was, and he woulnd't tell me. I think its titanium, as its not copper, brass, or aluminum and its not magnetic. Regardless, its a fantastic sounding pot call that is super responsive to striker pressure and has a great raspy, henny sound that helped me take this gobbler.

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truck driver

Ammo Smith
Mar 11, 2013
6,880
164
Congrats on the good-looking bird. Short spurs are generally a sign of a young bird so he will be good eating.
I've killed male birds with long spurs and short beards which usually have been frozen off during a hard winter.
 

DrMike

Ballistician
Nov 8, 2006
35,014
1,403
I really appreciate you taking me along on this hunt. I've never hunted turkey, and it is a great experience for me to go with you vicariously. Congratulations on the bird, even though it did end your season. I can definitely understand the mixture of feelings when a successful hunt means the end of the season.
 

noslerpartition

Handloader
May 26, 2018
886
144
Congratulations on your hunt!
I feel with you - I guess we would all like to go one after the tags are filled...

One question: what kind of combination-gun is that? They have a long tradition over here, but I wasn't aware that there is much use in the US.
 

6.5_sWv

Beginner
Mar 5, 2019
142
57
Congratulations on your hunt!
I feel with you - I guess we would all like to go one after the tags are filled...

One question: what kind of combination-gun is that? They have a long tradition over here, but I wasn't aware that there is much use in the US.

NP,
That's a cheap (compared to your merkels and furlocks) Baikal IZH 94. It was russian made and imported through European America Arms in Florida. It's a 12ga / 223rem. I currently load 55gr Sierra SP over 23gr BL-C2. The 12ga barrel patterns very good with the choke tube I have in it right now which is a COMP n CHOKE.

I wish the combo gun would become more popular here in the US. I specifically bought this one for Turkey and I've used it to its full potential this season by using both barrels in each specific situation. For other uses I could see a plethora of use for lots of hunters but unfortunately they don't have a following here and I imagine it has to do with lack of manufactures or affordable options here in the US
 

noslerpartition

Handloader
May 26, 2018
886
144
I used to have a Drilling from the 1950s.
16 ga shot 22 Hornet inlay barrel in the second shot-barrel, 8x57 IRS for the big bullet.
Great gun for the time as hunting was back then.

Shot for small game and predators up close, hornet for a bit farther, 8mm for boar and deer. Or a slug in one shot-barrel, if you want to have two bigger ones.
But due to changes in agriculture, we don't have much small game these days, so I sold it.
But it was a beauty and shot very well.
I guess export to you won't be easy. They are not in high demand here and prices for used guns are reasonable.
Biggest problem with the old guns is the scope mount. Most have a Suhler Einhakmontage. While they are a piece of art, they make changing scopes difficult and expensive. I don't know if your average gun Smith knows them at all. Even here the ones that make a good one slowly die out...
 
Last edited:
Apr 17, 2020
198
159
NP,
That's a cheap (compared to your merkels and furlocks) Baikal IZH 94. It was russian made and imported through European America Arms in Florida. It's a 12ga / 223rem. I currently load 55gr Sierra SP over 23gr BL-C2. The 12ga barrel patterns very good with the choke tube I have in it right now which is a COMP n CHOKE.

I wish the combo gun would become more popular here in the US. I specifically bought this one for Turkey and I've used it to its full potential this season by using both barrels in each specific situation. For other uses I could see a plethora of use for lots of hunters but unfortunately they don't have a following here and I imagine it has to do with lack of manufactures or affordable options here in the US
I really wish double barrel rifles of all sorts were more popular in America. I would be tempted to get one if I can ever afford it. Hard to justify it, but I love them.
 

KinleyWater

Handloader
Jun 15, 2019
345
285
I really wish double barrel rifles of all sorts were more popular in America. I would be tempted to get one if I can ever afford it. Hard to justify it, but I love them.
I've frequently fantasized about building my own double in something like 460 or 500 S&W; something perhaps akin to the TC Katahdin, but with an immediate second shot. Every time I get the idea, though, it strikes me just how expensive it would be.
 
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