“Spring Thunder” Approaches!


 Don’t make this common mistake as the “Spring Thunder” Approaches!

by Amy Lignor

No doubt, there is an endless amount of advice, information, and opinions when it comes to turkey hunting. This wealth of knowledge also includes the thousands of websites, videos, and more offering tips to consider when gearing up for the “Spring Thunder” of gobblers.

Oddly enough, however, there’s still a common mistake that is made too often.  Even though the vast majority of deer hunters head to the range before the season opens to “sight-in” their firearm and practice their shooting skills to bring down that trophy Tom successfully, many hunters will “skip” this crucial step when getting ready to bag their gobbler.

“Spring Thunder” Approaches! No doubt, there is an endless amount of advice, information, and opinions when it comes to turkey hunting.

It is a fact that every hunter should have a plan set in place, which requires practice and prep work to determine how your firearm and ammunition performs in the field. Practice at the range is critical. So not only should preseason calling practice and gear prep be on your “to-do” list, but making sure ahead of time that you can shoot accurately is also a definite must. Shooting over a turkey’s head is a very common mistake as well as misjudging distances in the field. Prevent a “miss” by making time to practice shooting now.

Prep begins by increasing your knowledge. As turkey hunters know, a 12-gauge may shoot further than a 20-gauge, but the 20-gauge has less recoil, which is perfect for youth hunters.  Although a 12-gauge with a smooth bore is considered by some to be the “standard” turkey gun,  the most important thing to remember is to go with the one you’re most comfortable shooting.

Of course, this just scratches the surface. With the menu of factory sights on shotguns, plus the available scopes, red dot sights, and more, there’s a lot of options to choose from, so make sure to invest in the tools that will give you the best chance of success. Regardless of the “sight,” you choose, knowing how it performs in the field is key.

Plus, you might be of the mindset that a shotgun will pattern quite well directly out of the box; this is not the case. You will need to determine what loads, chokes, and shot sizes are best for a shotgun. Simply put, this means heading to the range and getting the “feel” of your chosen shotgun is incredibly important. Taking the time to see how a variety of these tools work allows you to settle upon just the right combination for that solid, quick kill.

By using an anatomically correct turkey target to practice aiming, you will also determine a good pattern and know your shotgun’s range. Try the loads you’re testing at 20, 30, 40, and even 45 yards to see how your choices perform so that you know ahead of time what ranges you’re capable of shooting at with the tools you choose. Practice makes perfect, and going to the range to be “ready” for the season is not only fun and enjoyable, but it will pay off big!

You have put the work in getting ready for the season, scouting, planning, and much more. Don’t leave your “shot” to chance…hit the range today!


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