Alabama Gazette - The people's voice of reason

Another Alabama Turkey Season in the Books

 

Dr. Ryan McWhorter and his daughter Iyla, on a recent morning in Bullock County Alabama

Folks, it's been a pretty interesting turkey season this year! The Alabama thunder chickens were gobbling and thundering the first part of the season, but that quickly changed, as it always does. The first three weeks of the season were outstanding, with the toms running everywhere. If I had been just hunting for myself, I probably would have hit bag limit in the first two weeks alone.

Of course, after those first three weeks, the season took a turn for the quiet, as the birds had had their fill of talkin, and decided to hang out with the hens. Sure, some days you could get one to gobble back at you, but between the silence and the frequently changing weather, it could be a bit discouraging to head out in the woods this year. Still, some folks persevered, and were rewarded for their effort! I've been taking folks out to the woods as a guide throughout the season, and we did get to see plenty of birds. Some mornings, we got good looks, and managed a few hits and misses. Other days, nothing but the sound of boots marching through hardwood bottoms and across the edges of fields. Throw in the amount of sign we've seen of predators like coyotes into the mix, and it's no wonder that these birds have been scarce.

Despite the ups and downs, I got to spend a lot of time hunting with a whole range of folks, some who were old friends, and others who I met for the first time. That's one of the greatest parts about the sport of turkey hunting, and being an outdoorsman in general; it's a unique opportunity to bond with all of the folks we take with us. A lot of folks I took with me had never been turkey hunting in Alabama before, and they quickly discovered why the sport down here is seen as a challenge. Those toms can be like ghosts, and if you're hunting for a big one, you better be ready. Those birds didn't get old by being dumb!

Of course, wrapping up the season, Outdoor Alabama has sent out a survey for a lot of hunters, and it'd be pretty nice of folks to answer it by May 5th to help out the folks that keep our state a hunting paradise. Of course, like any survey, there's always that one question. For me, it was "Do you think there are too many turkey hunters?" in regards to limited turkey populations. It cracked me up pretty good! That natural competitor in me says, "Of course! Too many fellas I've gotta share those birds with!" But in all truth, I don't think that'll be an issue for a long time. In fact, back when I started turkey hunting decades ago, I would drive to the property, and would hardly see any trucks or vehicles out on the road. Nowadays, I can't hardly pass an iron gate without seeing at least two trucks parked at it! Organizations like the NWTF and other conservational efforts have been tremendous in growing the sport, and it's with their help that we can continue improving the state's turkey population, and of course, the hunting! So be sure to check out the NWTF, Outdoor Alabama, and other great groups to help with the sport!

Now, even though Alabama's season is closed, keep in mind that there is still some hunting left to be done elsewhere. As for myself, I'll be headed to South Dakota with a few buddies, like Duane Cochrane and Greg Cole from Huntsville. We'll have the pleasure of being guided by my longtime friend Terry Sieveke in his own backyard of South Dakota. It's always a blast to visit other parts of the nation and see what kind of hunting they offer.

But hey, tell me all about your season! If you've got some stories to share, or some birds to show-off, drop me a line at slong1960@hotmail.com. It's always great to hear about an exciting hunt, even if I wasn't there!

So good work on another season finished, and if you're gonna be like me and travel for a little more fun, be safe and enjoy the trip! Go get'em!

 

Reader Comments
(0)

 
 

Powered by ROAR Online Publication Software from Lions Light Corporation
© Copyright 2018

Rendered 08/13/2018 19:46