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This happened more than 20 years ago but a good lesson none the less. Some good points from the article that should be reinforced whether this is your first season or you've been turkey hunting for many years.

Hunt defensively

The following eight tips will help you hunt more defensively in the turkey woods this spring. And besides making you a safer hunter, these suggestions will also make you more successful:

1)Never stalk a turkey — Trying to sneak up on a wild gobbler is a hunting method that could easily result in you being involved in a hunting accident. Always attempt to call a turkey to your location.

2)Dress for success — Eliminate the colors red, white, and blue from your hunting clothing, the colors of a gobbler's head. Wear complete camouflage when calling from a stationary position, including head net and gloves. When moving through the woods, display some hunter orange.

3)Remain still — When approached by another hunter, don't move, wave, or make a turkey sound to alert him/her of your presence. Instead, yell or speak in a loud voice. And always assume that any turkey sound you hear may be another hunter.

4)Don't use a gobble call — Gobble calls are great for locating birds prior to the hunting season, but should be left at home once the turkey season begins.

5)Choose a safe calling position — Whenever possible, select a large tree or rock to sit against when calling. The object will not only break up your outline, but will protect your back as well.

6)Positively identify your target — In most states, only bearded birds are allowed to be harvested during the spring turkey hunting season. Make sure you see a beard before pulling the trigger, and never ever shoot at just a sound or movement.

7)Know your range — Pattern your shotgun prior to the turkey hunting season, using the same ammunition with which you plan to hunt. Numbers 4, 5, 6, or 7 1/2 size shot are good choices. Know your gun's effective range, and keep in mind that most turkeys are killed at 30 yards or less.

8)Where to aim — Always aim at a turkey's neck and head. Wild gobblers are large, heavy, big-boned birds that are seldom killed by a body shot.
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