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Tips and Tactics for Late-Season Turkey Success

When it comes to late season turkey hunting, you’re dealing with some very wary birds! These guys have heard and seen it all, so tread lightly!  Less is more!

One of the first tips I will try late season while hunting turkeys is to get out of the blind.  The more mobile you are, the better off you’ll be in the long run.  Also try to use any vantage points to your advantage so you can potentially see what’s going on.  If the birds are talking use your eyes to find them and make a plan.

Tips and Tactics for Late-Season Turkey Success

Scouting becomes even more beneficial the later in the season it is.  I believe putting in the time to understand what the birds are doing is extremely important, especially late in the year.  By knowing exactly where they like to roost, strut, feed, etc., your odds of success are going to go way up.  One of the biggest problems I run into late season is hearing the birds gobble and then they just go silent.  If you know what their routine is, even if they go silent, you may still have a fighting chance.


When all else fails, bring a fan and get aggressive if hunting private land.  Although a fan works wonders on birds that won’t commit, safety has to always be the number one priority.  Check to ensure fanning is legal in your state and make sure to only do it in open fields where you are crawling out after birds.  My favorite way to do this is to find a field with a strutter and wait until his hens get slightly away from him.  That’s the time to get aggressive and it’s unbelievable how well this can work.  Remember to get down and crawl and keep that fan in front.  To add a little more realism, move the fan and also flip it around backwards.  Once the gobbler locks in, get ready because they usually come in pretty fast!

Lastly, late season can be one of the most beneficial time for your LongBeard XR as shots tend to be a little longer.  Ensure you’ve spent time at the range so you know what your gun, choke and your capabilities are as a shooter.  It’s no secret birds are a little more call shy this late in the game; so, make sure you’re getting the most out of your setup by shooting LongBeard XR.  So what gives it extra range?  Winchester has incorporated the Shot-Lok technology which delivers the tightest patterns and longest shot capability of any lead turkey load. If you’re going to take a longer shot, ensure you have a good rest whether that be on a tree, shooting sticks, or a knee.  Do your best to take human error out of the shot and let the LongBeard XR handle the rest!

In the end turkey hunting late season can be difficult, but the most important thing is to get out there and enjoy your time afield.  Keep your eyes open for good deer trails that you may have missed, watch for morel mushrooms and sheds and just enjoy the beautiful spring weather.  As the season warms up remember to spray your clothing for ticks to avoid and unnecessary contact if at all possible.

Melissa Bachman
Melissa Bachman
With a degree in broadcast journalism, Melissa set sights on a career in the outdoors. Traveling over 300 days a year to shoot for Winchester Deadly Passion, Bachman considers this her “dream job.” With a love for children, industry trade shows and the great outdoors, she films around the world for her adrenaline-pumped series.