Locating a place to hunt an Osceola is more difficult than the other three sub species, because they are only found on the Florida peninsula. Some of the more northern areas of Florida have highbreds instead of true Osceolas.
The south Florida area we are hunting has only true Osceola wild turkeys.
We are south of Arcadia, Florida hunting with David Mills at William’s Wildlife Preserve. This area has an abundance of Osceolas as well as Alligators, Whitetail Deer, Quail and Pheasants. David Mills is as knowledgeable a turkey hunter and guide as there is. He is the absolute best for Osceolas. For information on his Osceola and Alligator hunts call David Mills at 863-303-4726. Visit his web site at www.teamsrr.com.
Alpine Archery F1 Fireball – I received this new Alpine Archery parallel limb bow a week before we had to leave for the Florida hunt. I immediately went to to my friend Jim Mitchell’s ranch and Gene Curry set the bow up so it was all that it could be. And that was plenty.
When Gene was finished the F1 Fireball was quieter shooting than any bow I’ve ever owned. Quiet is important. A smooth draw is important too and this bow is extremely smooth and comfortable to draw. The bow’s rosewood grip fits perfectly. Speed is a good thing too and the Fireball is rated at 337 FPS. My setup has plenty of speed — the arrows rocket out of the bow.
So when the gobbler came in and I eased the Fireball into the stops the bow was ready to do its part. I just had to do mine and put the arrow in the boiler maker.
Grim Reaper Broadheads – I shot the 100 grain Whitetail Special with a 2-inch cut and a cut-on-impact tip. I like to shoot expandable broadheads for wild turkeys and the bigger the cut the better. I do not take head shots, in my opinion a broadhead in a gobbler’s vitals is the shot to take. That’s where my arrow went and the longbeard went down right away. Grim Reaper broadheads are awesome.
WannabOutdoors Bowstix – This is a new product for 2011 and I really like it. In a ground blind there is no convenient way to keep your bow ready to shoot. Enter the Bowstix. I screwed it into my stabilizer hole and its bi-pod legs supported my bow upright in shooting position. I nocked an arrow and my Alpine was ready to go when I reached for it.
Victory Arrows – I’m shooting Victory V Force carbon shafts. They group tight and fly fast. They are tough too, I’ve shot wild hogs, deer and an alligator with them and have never had one break. Victory makes excellent arrows.
ThermaCELL – Florida is notorious for mosquitoes and they were out this morning. But the ThermaCELL kept them out of the blind. It is truly amazing, just turn it on and watch the pesky rascalls fly away. You can see them all around but not where you are.
I fletched my own arrows with the Arizona EZ Mini Fletch. It does 3 feathers at a time and is easy and fast to use. The vanes were white Bohning Blazers and I use the super fast drying Goat Tuff glue.
On The Bow – Gene Curry installed a string loop and a Whisper-Peep on my bowstring. My bow quiver is the Alpine Soft Loc 5 arrow model. It is quiet and can easily be taken off the bow (for hunters who want to do that). The arrow rest is the Alpine Whisperflite fall away rest. It is silent and gets out of the way in a mili second. I’ve used this rest for 4 years and it is excellent. The bow sight is the Cobra Archery BoomSlang. I got the one with the largest pins available, those tiny pins are difficult to see inside a dark ground blind.
Decoys – C.J. White set up the Zink Avian X LCD Lifelike Collapsible Decoys, he used 2 hens — a feeding and watching one. They are blow up decoys that are realistic looking. The feeding hen had a motion system and lended realism to our decoy setup that was irresistible to the gobbler.
Our ground blind was a Double Bull Dark Horse by Primos. Wild turkeys don’t notice it and if you keep your motion down they can’t see you inside it. I also had Nikon Binoculars and Rangefinder.