Hunting expert explains why third turkey season can be special


PARIS  —  Kyle Randall has been around turkey hunting long enough to realize there’s something special about the third season, which started four weeks ago and goes until the end of this month.

The Paris resident is an outdoor expert and executive producer of the Wilderness Journal television program.

“The third season is, in my opinion, is and can be the best season,” Randall said. “The third season is about frustration. Most of the hens had been bred, they get up off the roost, fly down. There’s a little bit of activity usually. They want nothing to do with those toms.”

Hens will go in different directions, Randall said.

“Frustration will come in,” he said. “The toms are still wanting to breed. It’s frustrating.”

Randall, speaking at a recent local seminar, further explains why he’s figuring the third season will be the best one this year.

“This spring is going to be a little late,” he said. “The turkeys aren’t talking. What can’t be changed is the cold air at night. If you’ve got the last season, you’re going to want to try three things: at least two hen decoys, and a whole bunch of calling. Later in the day is when that whole bunch of calling comes in.

“Put out every decoy you own, spend 15 minutes making a ruckus. By your watch, sit there silently for 15 minutes. You might have one of the best opportunities to kill one of the best birds you’ll ever see. They will come and they’ll wait for it to die down. The curiosity and frustration gets the best of them and they will show up. Most turkeys in this situation are spooked by the guy or gal getting out and picking up their decoy... and they run the birds off. By your watch, make it a minimum of 15 minutes. It’s one of the very best tactics for a big bird I know.”

Randall stresses that any turkey hunter, who puts in the proper homework, can have success.

“You can have fun with an animal that will respond to you,” he said. “If you want to learn how to call turkeys better, the easier and best way is find somebody that raises domestic turkeys and there’s still quite a few people like that around. Ask them if you can come and listen to their turkeys and talk to them. Take your box call. Make the sounds that they make.”