By Scott Ellis

As the excitement of striking a gobbler sets in, it is very common to haphazardly plant yourself on the nearest tree and begin calling to your tom. Resist this urge and methodically choose your setup position. It can make or break your level of success.

Choose a location that will offer the gobbler the path of least resistance on his way to your set up. If he is on the other side of a dense area, silence your calling and progress to the same side of the area to begin your conversation.If you’re getting a response from a bird but he is on the move, cease your calling and make a loop around in front of him. Then choose a good position and begin your calling sequences.

Placing yourself in an area that provides easy access or an area that a gobbler seemingly wants to go will increase your chances of luring him into gun or bow range.

Another thought when choosing your set up is visibility. Ensure when you take a seat at the base of that tree that you have an unobstructed view and can produce an accurate shot from multiple angles.

Scott Ellis with a longbeard Osceola gobbler.

I also position myself where the gobbler will not be in plain sight of the hen he is hearing, until he is in range. Utilize any undergrowth or scattered trees to cloak your position, but ensure you have the ability to get off a clear shot. Set up on the bend of a road or around the corner in a field.

We have no proof of a turkey’s reasoning abilities, but when he hears a hen and there is enough cover to obstruct her from view, he will often come closer to investigate and pinpoint his mate. Hence the many difficulties when hunting pasture turkeys, apply this method to them as well. Set up 20-30 yards inside the wood line instead of on the edge. Also, try muffling your calling by simply putting your hand over your mouth. This can also hinder his uncanny locating ability.

Scott Ellis
Woodhaven Custom Calls – Sting Team

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Member: Florida Outdoor Writer’s Assoc.