The Best Turkey Hunting Shotguns of 2024, Field Tested and Reviewed

Our editors made their picks for the best turkey shotguns
best turkey guns

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One of the hottest trends in the shotgun market is the “turkey gun.” Today, the best turkey shotguns are typically variants of a shotgun that was designed for waterfowl or small game hunters with stocks and barrels that are shortened to make the guns easier to carry and more maneuverable in tight cover. Gun makers added pistol grips for a more rifle-like shooting experience and many turkey guns have receivers that are drilled and tapped for optics. They all come with chokes designed specifically for printing tight, gobbler-killing patterns. 

There are as many variations of a turkey hunting gun as there are versions of turkey hunting styles. There are hefty, long range guns for hunters who want to sit in a blind and kill turkeys beyond 50 yards. Alternatively, there are compact, maneuverable guns for private-land hunters who want to crawl their way through the season, reaping turkeys at close range. And there are classic pump shotguns for traditionalists who believe the only way to kill a turkey is in the woods with your back resting against a tree. So our team of editors put together a list of the best turkey shotguns for all the different styles of turkey hunting and types of turkey hunters. Over the years we’ve hunted with most of these guns and we’ve extensively shot all the product lines mentioned here.

Best Turkey Guns of 2024

Best Pump Guns

Best Semi-Autos

Best Sub-Gauges

The best turkey decoys help you bunch a tag
Robinson and his hunting buddy Josh Dahlke after a successful spring turkey hunt. Alex Robinson

History of the Turkey Gun

Turkey-specific shotguns haven’t been around all that long when you consider hunters have been taking break-actions and repeaters into the woods to chase wild game for hundreds of years.

During the Depression, the turkey population dipped to 30,000 birds, so there wasn’t a need to build a platform that catered specifically to turkey hunters. For much of the 20th century, your turkey gun was whatever shotgun you owned. That’s not the case anymore. With the restoration of turkey populations across the U.S. and Canada (there were almost 7 million birds between both countries by the early 2000s), the dedicated turkey gun became popular.

Read Next: Best Camo for Turkey Hunting

Best Turkey Pump Shotguns

Best Pump: Mossberg 835 Ulti-Mag Turkey, Otics Ready

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Key Features

  • Receiver is cut for an RMSc footprint red dot
  • Tang-mounted safety
  • Ulti Full Choke
  • 3.5-inch chamber
  • 24-inch barrel
  • Weight: 7.5 pounds
  • Overall Length: 44.75 inches
  • Mossy Oak Greenleaf camo

Pros

  • Long history of reliability
  • Ambidextrous safety
  • Optics ready
  • Affordable

Cons

  • Heavy recoil
  • Has a plastic exterior feel

I’ve hunted across the country with my old beater 835 over the last eight turkey seasons and what I love most about it is that it always patterns well and never fails. It cycles consistently and always goes bang when I squeeze the trigger. It gets splashed with snow, rain, mud, and turkey blood every season and just keeps running (now that I think about it, I’m not sure that I’ve ever cleaned the gun). 

A turkey next to a camo best turkey hunting shotgun
Robinson used foam and duct tape to raise the comb height on the old Mossberg 835 Ulti-Mag. Alex Robinson

To get the proper comb height in order to see through the red dot sight I mounted on it, I stole a trick from Dave Petzal and taped a few strips of foam to the stock using green duct tape. It works wonderfully, and really adds to the aesthetic of the gun. But you won’t have to do this sort of redneck gunsmithing with the new 835 Turkey. Thanks to an ingenious design from Mossberg, its receiver has a little cut-out that fits any red dot sight with a RMSc footprint. Mossberg even offers a combo version of this gun with a Holosun sight installed. The result of this design is that the optic is mounted low on the receiver allowing you to make a solid cheek weld on the stock. It also makes for a slim rig. As far as out-of-the box turkey setups go, you won’t do better than this one. 

If you’d prefer to shoot a 20-gauge or .410, Mossberg offers the same configuration in their 500 Turkey, see below. —AR

Best Pistol Grip Pump: Winchester SXP Long Beard

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Key Features

  • Pistol grip stock with adjustable LOP and comb height
  • Long Beard Choke (extra full)
  • 3.5-inch chamber
  • 24-inch barrel
  • Weight: 7 pounds
  • Overall Length: 45 inches
  • Mossy Oak Break Up; Obsession camo options

Pros

  • Adjustable stock
  • Fiber optic sight included
  • Drilled and tapped for optics
  • Great features for the price

Cons

  • Heavy recoil
  • SXP has middle-of-the road quality

The SXP Long Beard offers all the features that a turkey hunter wants at a very reasonable price ($550). The pistol grip allows you to better control and aim the gun while you’re sitting on the ground with your back against a tree. It comes with two comb pieces so you can decide between comb heights. This is important if you decide to mount an optic on the gun, which will sit higher than the open sights the shotgun comes with. The receiver is drilled and tapped for easily adding optics. The stock also comes with length of pull adjustments so you can fit the gun to you perfectly. The gun comes with a turkey choke, but it runs on the Invector Plus choke system so you could easily go with an aftermarket turkey choke if you so choose.
The SXP platform has proven to be reliable and durable over the years, but it’s by no means a fancy gun. Fit and finish on the SXP is typically a bit rough, even when compared to other affordable pump shotguns like the 870 Fieldmaster or Mossberg 500. But most turkey hunters don’t need or want a fancy gun. And for them, the Winchester SXP is a solid choice. —A.R.

Best Classic Turkey Hunting Gun: Ithaca Model 37 Turkey Slayer

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Key Features

  • Bottom eject
  • 24-inch barrel
  • Rifle sights

Pros

  • Reliability of a pump shotgun
  • Better accuracy with rifle sights
  • Manageable weight for a pump

Cons

  • Pricey for a pump
  • No wood and steel option
  • Cross-bolt safety on a bottom eject

The 37 has enjoyed one of the longest runs in pump shotgun history. Based on a John Browning design, the Ithaca Model 37 was originally set to debut in 1933 after the Browning patents expired. But it was discovered that gunmaker John Pederson also held some of the design patents, and so Ithaca had to wait four more years for those to expire. The 37 Turkey Slayer is still being made and available in a 12- and 20-gauge model with a 24-inch barrel. There are raised rifle sights just forward of the receiver and at the muzzle for better accuracy, and the Turkey Slayer comes in a black synthetic finish for added durability. —J.G.

Semi-Auto Turkey Guns

Best Semi-Auto: Benelli Super Black Eagle 3 Turkey Performance Shop

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Key Features

  • 24-inch barrel
  • Burris FastFire II red-dot
  • Mossy Oak camouflage finish
  • 3½-inch chamber

Pros

  • Pistol grip adds steadiness
  • Burris optic delivers better accuracy
  • Enlarged bolt handle and “slammer button” bolt release make the gun easier to operate

Cons

  • It’s light for a turkey gun, which means more recoil
  • Expensive

Rob Roberts is a master at getting the most out of shotgun pattern performance. The Arkansas gunsmith, known for his aftermarket choke tubes, teamed up with Benelli on the SBE3 Turkey Performance Shop. Roberts lengthens the forcing cones inside the 24-inch barrel and adds a custom .655 choke to deliver superior pattern density. The 12-gauge also comes with a Burris FastFire II red-dot so hunters can be more accurate with shot placement. A 3½-inch gun that only weighs 6.8 pounds, the SBE3 is inertia-driven, so 2-ounce turkey loads will sting your shoulder a bit more than if you were shooting a gas gun. An extended pistol grip allows you to better stabilize the gun, which is important in turkey hunting because you’ll be aiming the gun like it’s a rifle. —Joe Genzel

It’s not an overly heavy turkey gun in 20-gauge at 7.2 pounds but the 12 is over 8 pounds. A bottom-eject pump, the Turkey Slayer will keep the elements away from your shotshell, which is critical if you’re sitting through a spring rain or freak snow shower. It’s not unheard of for moisture to make its way into the action of side eject shotguns and contaminate a shell’s gunpowder, rendering it useless. Or the water can work its way into the firing pin, causing a light strike of the shotshell’s primer. —J.G.

Best Affordable Semi-Auto Turkey Gun: Winchester SX4 NWTF Cantilever Turkey

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Key Features

  • Available in 12- (3½-inch) or 20-gauge (3-inch)
  • 24-inch barrel
  • Invector-Plus extended choke system, includes extra full turkey
  • Adjustable rear sight
  • Weaver-style cantilever rail design for attaching an optic
  • $1,150 MSRP

Pros

  • 24-inch barrel is convenient for running and gunning and tight hides
  • Semi-auto action runs without a hitch
  • A portion of sales goes to NWTF to support wild turkey conservation

Cons

  • The fit and finish falls short of what you would expect for the price—ran out of adjustment on the rear sight, which could’ve been solved by mounting an optic

If you want a dedicated turkey gun built around a reliable autoloader, you have to consider the SX4 NWTF Cantilever Turkey. Winchester updated the SX3’s ergonomics by including a rounder pistol grip and a textured grip, which makes this shotgun easy to handle even if you’re sweating or sitting in the rain. The chrome-plated chamber and bore keep the action running smoothly, and when the sun does start shining, the flat-finish camo doesn’t glare at all. Without the plug (you must have one in to legally turkey hunt), the magazine can hold four 2 3/4-inch shells, and the 12-gauge will accommodate up to a 3½-inch load. You can mount a traditional scope or a red-dot on the rail, or simply use the open fiber-optic sights. —Natalie Krebs

Lightest Recoiling: Savage Renegauge Turkey

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Key Features

  • Fully adjustable stock
  • Soft cheek pad and recoil pad
  • Monte Carlo style stock
  • 3-inch chamber
  • Barrel length: 24 inches
  • Weight: 7.8 pounds
  • Overall Length: 45.5 inches
  • Mossy Oak bottomland; Obsession camo options

Pros

  • Relatively soft recoiling
  • Stock configuration makes for accurate aiming
  • Drilled and tapped for optics
  • Beretta/Benelli Mobil Choke system

Cons

  • Heavy 

Shooting a 12-gauge turkey gun is not very fun. The recoil generated in a 3-inch magnum load is nothing short of punishing. If you’re looking for a little less kick but aren’t interested in stepping down to a sub-gauge, then consider the Renegauge Turkey. This gun has three main features that make it softer shooting: it’s gas-driven system, it’s hefty weight, and it’s cushy butt pad and cheek pad.

I shot the standard version of this gun during high-volume dove and pigeon hunts in Argentina last summer where I put thousands of rounds through the gun day after day. Most folks do not shoot 12 gauges on a hunt like this because even the light loads beat you up over time. But that was not the case with the Renegauge. To the surprise of our hosts, neither my shoulder nor my cheek were worse for wear. I was thoroughly impressed with the gun’s performance.

To those tough guys who say recoil doesn’t matter in a turkey gun, you’re only shooting once, I’d rebut with the point that recoil management isn’t about deflecting momentary pain or discomfort. It’s about preventing the shooter from flinching. Flinching is subconscious. And the worse the recoil, the more likely you are to flinch, even for experienced shooters. Don’t agree? Here’s what the great Jim Carmichel had to say about recoil.

The turkey version of the Renegauge gun comes with a shorter barrel (24 inches) but it’s still hefty at 7.8 pounds (that’s heavier than most turkey guns). The downside is that’s extra weight to carry through the woods and hold steady while waiting for that wary gobbler to finally strut into range. But on the upside, more weight does help reduce felt recoil. The stock is adjustable for comb height, length of pull and drop at heel. In short, you should be able to get this bad boy to fit you properly and hit where you aim. If you decide to mount an optic, the receiver is drilled and tapped. The turkey version comes with extended turkey, full, improved cylinder, modified choke tubes and it runs on the Beretta/Benelli Mobil system so you can easily find aftermarket chokes. —A.R.

Most Underrated Turkey Gun: TriStar Viper G2 Turkey

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Key Features

  • 3-inch chamber
  • Pistol grip
  • Picatinny rail
  • Gas operated

Pros

  • Price
  • Gas driven
  • Molded pistol grip

Cons

  • TriStar shotguns can be hard to find locally 

TriStar doesn’t get enough credit for the functionality and reliability of its gas-operated shotguns. They are modeled after Berettas, and I would argue you get more for less money in the G2 Turkey than you would in the A350. The G2 comes with a molded pistol grip, which helps keep the gun steady but also assists in mitigating recoil because all that force caused from the heavy shot charge is not going solely into your shoulder. A 3-inch gun, the G2 includes a removable Picatinny rail, so you can use an optic, and a fiber-optic sight is mounted at the muzzle. A Beretta-style extended turkey choke comes standard, and there is also a thick recoil pad affixed to the buttstock to help tame recoil. A five-year warranty is included. —J.G.

Sub-Gauge Turkey Guns

Best 20 Gauge: Benelli M2 Performance Shop

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Key Features

  • Custom work by Rob Roberts
  • Includes Burris FastFire Red Dot
  • Extended Extra Full Turkey Choke
  • 3-inch chamber
  • Barrel length: 24 inches
  • Weight: 5.7 pounds
  • Overall Length: 45.3 inches
  • Mossy Oak bottomland camo

Pros

  • Light 
  • Ready to hunt with out of the box
  • Promises high-end patterning performance

Cons

  • Expensive

With the popularization of TSS turkey loads, a lot of the hardest of hardcore turkey hunters are switching to 20 gauges. They are generally more maneuverable, lighter to carry, and don’t give up much patterning performance inside 50 yards. If this sounds appealing to you, the most tricked out 20-gauge turkey gun you’ll find is Benelli’s M2 Performance Shop.

This is essentially a custom shotgun that has undergone performance enhancements by Rob Roberts and a RR turkey choke. Each gun is pattern tested with Federal ammo. The shotgun comes with a Burris FastFire—a very good red dot for turkey hunting—already mounted to the receiver. At 5.7 pounds this shotgun will be a dream to carry in the woods. In other words, if you want the ideal turkey gun without having to build it yourself, the M2 performance shop is for you. But you’re going to have to pay handsomely for it. The MSRP is $2,949.

Best Value 20 Gauge: Rem Arms 870 Fieldmaster Compact

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Key Features

  • Reliable pump action
  • 3-inch chamber
  • Barrel length: 21 inches
  • Weight: 6 pounds
  • Overall length 40.5 inches
  • Walnut stock

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Compact

Cons

  • You’ll want to get aftermarket chokes

Who knows how many turkeys the beloved 870 has taken over the years. America’s most popular shotgun is a do-it-all tool, but the new Fieldmaster has a 20-gauge configuration that makes it perfect for turkey hunting. Rem Arms (the new version of Remington) offers a 20 with a 21-inch barrel that weighs just six pounds. This will make for a light, compact, no fuss, no muss turkey rig.

Historically, Remington shotguns pattern well, which is key for a turkey gun. This model comes with IC, M, and F chokes, but I’d recommend going with an aftermarket choke to get top performance out of your 20 gauge. Even factoring in the aftermarket addition, this will be an affordable setup. MSRP is $540.
As for overall quality, the new Fieldmaster is a step up from the old 870 Express but not quite as nice as the Wingmaster. Still, it won our review of the best pump shotguns

Best 28-Gauge Turkey Gun: Mossberg SA-28 Tactical Turkey

Best 28-Gauge Turkey Gun

Mossberg SA-28 Tactical Turkey

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Key Features

  • Gauge: 28
  • Chamber: 2 ¾ inches
  • Capacity: 4+1
  • Action: Semi-auto, gas
  • Weight: 5 pounds 11.8 ounces (measured with no base)
  • Length: 41 7/8 inches
  • Barrel: 22 inches
  • Choke: Extended Turkey
  • Trigger: 5 pounds, 9 ounces (measured)
  • Sights: Fiber optic front and ghost-ring rear
  • Stock: Synthetic pistol grip
  • Finish: Mossy Oak Greenleaf
  • Price: $902

Pros

  • Light Recoiling
  • Handy

Cons

  • Chambered in 2 ¾ inches

The Tactical Turkey comes with a camo stock—done in the stylishly retro Mossy Oak Greenleaf—with a pistol grip. The pistol grip is made of rubber with finger grooves that gives a very secure grip. Because the shotgun is so light—with the Picatinny rail attached and the reflex sight mounted it weighed 5 pounds 15 ounces—it is easy to control and support the gun for long periods of time. The shotgun is also easy to wield one-handed in case you need your lead hand to run a call or otherwise mess with your gear. I hunted with one in Florida for Osceolas and it performed nicely. (Read my full review of the Mossberg SA-28 Tactical Turkey here).

The author completed his North American turkey slam with this beautiful Osceola turkey.
The author completed his North American turkey slam with this beautiful Osceola turkey. Oliver Rogers

The gas system is soft shooting and requires little in the way of special maintenance other than occasional cleaning. Officially, Mossberg labels the SA-28 Tactical Turkey as a “Mossberg International” gun. Shotguns in that line are produced in Turkey, while the others Mossbergs made in the U.S. But still, my sample is well made, which is encouraging regarding Mossberg’s arrangement with their Turkish partner.

One important thing to consider if you opt for a 28-gauge turkey gun is that 28-gauge TSS ammo isn’t overflowing on the shelves of your local big box Mart. You’ll need to turn to specialty outfits like the Federal Custom Shop, Apex, Boss and Rogue to find these shells. —John B. Snow

Best 3-inch Chamber, 28 Gauge: Benelli SBE 3

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Key Features

  • 3-inch chamber
  • Barrel length: 26 inches
  • Weight: 5.6 pounds
  • Overall length 47.5 inches
  • Mossy Oak Bottomland, Sitka Optifade Timber, Realtree Max, Black Synthetic options

Pros

  • Versatile
  • 3-inch chamber
  • Light

Cons

  • Might shoot high
  • Not drilled and tapped for an optic
  • Pricey

There aren’t many 28-gauge shotguns on the market that have 3-inch chambers, but the best one we’ve shot is the SBE 3. This shotgun won our review of the best shotguns of 2023 with its slick action, natural pointing, and good looks. Even the 26-inch-barrel version of this shotgun is not a true turkey gun, but it could definitely be used for this purpose. A few ammo makers are now offering 3-inch 28-gauge loads in tungsten, lead, and bismuth options. This is an ideal rig for turkey hunters who want a light gun that hits like a hammer at close and mid distances. Relative to other turkey guns, the SBE 3 in 28 gauge is a super-soft shooter. 

Plus the SBE 3 28-gauge could certainly pull duty as an upland bird gun or waterfowl gun when paired with the right ammo.  

I’ve hunted with the 28-inch-barrel version of this shotgun for two seasons now and have been impressed with the lethality of the little 28 gauge (read my full  review of the 28-gauge SBE 3 here). It won’t replace my 12 gauge, but when I expect to shoot at closer distances and want a light gun to carry and a sweet gun to shoot, it’s the shotgun I grab.  

The only downside we found to this gun is that it patterned high during our testing. This is problematic for a turkey gun, especially considering it’s not drilled and tapped for mounting an optic. If you choose the SBE 3 as your turkey gun, I recommend patterning it diligently and using the included shim kit to get on target. 

Best .410 Turkey Gun: Mossberg 500 Turkey .410, Optics Ready

Best .410 Turkey Gun

Mossberg 500 Turkey .410, Optics Ready

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Key Features

  • Action: Pump
  • Average Pattern: 127.5 (@40 yds inside a 10-inch circle)
  • Best Pattern: 156 (Apex)
  • Chamber Length: 3 inches
  • Barrel Length: 24 inches
  • Weight: 6.25 pounds (measured)
  • Trigger: 3 pounds, 6 ounces (measured)
  • Length of Pull: 13.9 inches
  • Choke: X-Full extended
  • Sights: Fiber optic, optics ready with Shield RMSc pattern
  • Price: $650 (with Holosun Optic)

Pros

  • Shot the best patterns of the .410 
  • Optics ready
  • Affordable

Cons

  • Creepy trigger
  • Description

The .410 Mossberg 500 Turkey produced the best patterns in our test of .410 turkey guns, putting an incredible 156 Apex No. 9 pellets on target from 40 yards. For reference, that’s a denser pattern than 12 gauge shotguns produced with some loads during our evaluation of the best turkey loads. With its extended extra-full choke, the Mossberg also shot Boss loads nicely as well as a bunch of the other best .410 turkey loads. It liked everything I fed it. 

Apex turkey load pattern
Apex Ninja loads put 156 pellets inside a 10-inch circle at 40 yards through the Mossberg 500. This was the best pattern of the test. Alex Robinson

The coolest feature on the new version of this shotgun is a small cutout in the receiver that allows you to mount a red dot sight with a Shield RMSc footprint directly to the gun (no rail needed). This allows you to keep the sight low on the gun, which promotes a solid cheek weld and creates a sleek profile for the rig. It’s a simple, ingenious design. At the time of publication Cabela’s is offering this gun plus a Holosun red dot sight for $650; that’s a screaming deal. 

The only thing I would ding this gun for is its creepy trigger. Even in the world of turkey guns, where precision is more of a luxury than a requirement, there’s a noticeable amount of slop in this trigger. Despite the trigger, this is hands down the best performing .410 turkey gun I’ve shot. —Alex Robinson

Best Affordable .410: Stevens 301 Turkey .410

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Key Features

  • 26-inch barrel
  • 5.07 pounds
  • 3-inch chamber
  • Removable one-piece rail
  • Extra-full choke tube

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Easily fitted with optics
  • Matte finish

Cons

  • Single shot
  • Less room for error with a .410
  • .410s aren’t legal to turkey hunt with in all states

Advanced turkey loads and chokes have turned the .410 from a small game gun to a deadly accurate turkey slayer. The Stevens 310 Turkey Obsession makes a great, lightweight option—even with its 26-inch barrel—if you tend to put dozens of miles under your boots every turkey season. And your arms shouldn’t shake after holding your gun at the ready for several minutes when you’re waiting for a shot opportunity.

The Stevens 310 comes with a rail that you can easily remove with two screws or equip with an optic. I shot a Truglo red-dot on this gun and it produced deadly patterns at 30 yards with the stock choke. But when I switched to a Carlson’s TSS choke and Apex Ninja 3-inch loads, I was able to get plenty of pellets on paper at 40 yards. Even though it’s a single shot if you have a shell holder on the stock you can quickly reload thanks to the fast ejector that doesn’t stick like the old Stevens model. At just over $200, it’s a screaming deal.—A.M.

Read Next: Best Turkey Loads

How to Choose a Turkey Shotgun

With the right choke and load combination, any turkey gun on this list will shoot excellent patterns at realistic hunting ranges. So if your primary interest is to buy a turkey shotgun for reliability, you can’t beat a pump-action. But that platform is also likely to produce the most recoil (along with break-action options) unless the gun has more weight to it.

Gas-driven autoloaders are soft shooters, but are also typically the most expensive. Inertia shotguns are light —and less expensive than gas guns—but they don’t handle recoil as well. And if the gun has a rotating bolt head, it may not send the shotshell into battery if you ease the action forward like so many turkey hunters do to load their shotguns (it keeps noise at a minimum). If you’re buying a dedicated turkey gun for the first time, it’s smart to start with an affordable model, and work your way up. 

Read Next: The Best Turkey Loads

A shotgun pattern
A good turkey gun with modern TSS loads shoots tight patterns beyond 40 yards. Alex Robinson

FAQs

Q: What’s the best turkey shotgun platform?

Most turkey hunters like to shoot a 12- or 20-gauge pump-action shotgun. The most common models are a Remington 870 Express or the Mossberg 500 or 835. The 870s are fairly light and like with any pump gun, you can also easily remove a shell from the chamber if you need to make a move. With the rise in popularity of TSS shotshells, many hardcore turkey hunters are opting for 28-gauge and even .410 shotguns because they are so light and manuverable—and they’re lighter on recoil. These days you’ll find plenty of sub-gauge guns in pump, semi-auto, and brake-action platforms.

Q: Do you need an optic?

I shot “open sights” on my turkey shotgun for a long time, and still do. But I have also shot turkey guns with a red-dot reflex sight and they will greatly improve your accuracy. Red-dot sights also help you get on target more quickly because there’s only one point of alignment compared to an open sight (or iron sight) which has two—rear sight to front sight to target (though some hunters, myself included, shoot turkeys like they would a duck and don’t use a sight to line up the shot at all). 

This concept also helps if you have to take a shot from an awkward position. For example if the turkey comes in behind and you have to twist around to shoot. Even if your head isn’t perfectly mounted on the gun and you’re not looking straight down the barrel, put the red dot on target and you’ll drop the bird. Lastly, new turkey hunters—just like a new handgun shooter—will benefit from a red-dot, because all they have to do is put that ball of fire on the turkey’s neck and squeeze the trigger.

Q: What’s the best turkey shotshell option?

If you can afford TSS, I would recommend buying it. You don’t need tungsten to kill a turkey, but I’ve shot most of mine with straight TSS or tungsten-iron shotshells in the last 10 years and they are absolute hammers. I’ve done some penetration testing with TSS, and it will go through two sheets of ½-inch drywall with ease at 40 yards. Lead will also make it through, but with far fewer pellets. 

Final Thoughts on Turkey Guns

Many hunters will put a turkey choke on a shotgun they already own and take it turkey hunting. That certainly works, but dedicated turkey shotguns come in all shapes and sizes with a wide variety of features. When you’re shooting a shotgun like a rifle from the ground amongst the trees, it’s better to have a raised comb and shorter barrel. You don’t need a turkey gun to kill a longbeard, but modern turkey-specific shotguns have earned such popularity because they’re more effective.

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Alex Robinson

Editor-in-Chief

Alex Robinson is Outdoor Life’s editor-in-chief. He oversees an ace team of writers, photographers, and editors who are scattered across the continent and cover everything from backcountry sheep hunting to trail running. He lives in Grant, Minnesota, with his supportive wife, well-mannered duck dog, and feral toddler.

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