Mid-Morning Turkey Hunts

Can't bear to rise and shine at 4 a.m. again? No worries. Here's an hour-by-hour hunting strategy for the post-dawn hours.

I know turkey hunters, in states where hunting turkeys after noon is permitted, who swear they're never getting up early again, because the hunting from midmorning to evening can be just as hot as the crack of dawn.

9:30 A.M.

You're hitting the woods just as many hens are leaving the toms to feed or nest. That drives toms nuts, so they're back on the warpath, looking for receptive hens, and sometimes just shock-gobbling out of sheer frustration. This is the time to slip through the woods quietly, stopping every 10 minutes or so to yelp up a lonesome bird. Another bonus: This is also the time when many turkey hunters are packing it in, so you'll have less competition from here on out.

11 A.M.

Take a brunch break by setting up near a known loafing area, such as tucked away pastures, open ridges, green food plots. Have a few snacks (no foil or crinkly wrappers) and a camouflaged water bottle handy so you can wait out the birds, calling quietly every 15 minutes.

1 P.M.

Time to hit the road again. Early afternoon is a good time to team up on turkeys, as gobblers are more wary than ever if they've been pushed by other hunters. Plot a cut-off scheme by having a caller sit 30 yards behind the gunner. When a gobbler hangs up 75 yards away from the caller, he'll be in range of the shooter. As the afternoon stretches on, start making your way back toward known roosting sites.

4 P.M.

The last ditch effort can pay off big. Gobblers have been chasing hens all day, but during the peak of breeding, they might not give up until sunset. Set up 100 yards from a known roosting area, and yelp and cutt as the shadows lengthen. A lonesome gobbler might figure this is his last chance to find a hen before nightfall, and come in hot.