You’ve got the decoys in your truck. Mixing up the way you stake them can make all the difference. Check out these three set ups that have worked for me over the years.
Jake with a Harem: A longbeard and a jake fly down, walk to a nearby pasture, looking for turkeys. Mr. Tom is about to strut, but . . . There stands another jake about to breed a belly-down hen, with other hens looking and feeding around it. They’re all fake but the live gobblers don’t know that and come to crash Mr. Shortbeard’s party. That’s when things go suddenly dark for the longbeard.
All Hens on Deck: This same boss tom enters the field with the same jake and sees a half-dozen hens feeding and looking. Think those male spring birds need a second invitation? Say a hen or two pull a different strutter along behind them. You might want to use all turkey decoy setups to challenge the boss hen traveling with that gobbler you want. The boss hen might just check out your big hen spread in dominance or curiosity mode and pull the gobbler right in behind her. Decoy sets are always a gamble though. The risk? All those hen fakes might have the boss hen lead her gobbler away from the competition.
Gobbler Fight: Put two gobbler decoys face-to-face: a jake and longbeard fake. Hen decoys fill out your spread, leaving room around the two fighters. Fighting purrs and even wing thrashing at your setup add the finishing touches. Turkeys love a good fight and that gobbler you’re trying to kill might run in for a front-row seat. Hit him with a knockout punch.
Photo: Avian-X decoys