The Turkey

It felt like the chill forests breath was breathing on my unprotected hands. We had been out for about an hour waiting for the turkeys to come down from the roost. It was May 16th spring, turkey season. My dad had been doing a lot of scouting so I could fill my tags. Then we heard it, asound like no other thing almost alien a gobble, my dad had been calling for some time to get them in.

There was a hen that had come through the field but she had only stayed for awhile then left soon after she was there. This was probably going to be our only chance at a turkey. After the jakes, young male turkey’s, got out of the roost they would probably follow that hen we saw and hopefully would come to us.

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The group of turkeys we were hearing sounded real eager and ready to come in.

Then my dad looked at me smiled and took a picture of me.

He said “They should come in soon so get ready”.

My reply was not the longest but it got the point across of how I was feeling about the turkeys coming.

I said, with a nervous edge to my voice, “I’m excited”

After that when I saw the first turkey pop it’s head above the rise in the ground out of the woods I had chills. It was the hen we had that came in the first time. When the other two jakes stepped out it looked like a postcard from a nature center (just looking perfect). They still had a little way to come so I could get a good shot on one of them. All the trees looked like a kind of northern rain forest in Michigan. I don’t know how they didn’t here me, for as I was bringing my dad’s remington 870 shotgun up I made some noise, but they kept coming.

I had previously shot the 870 not that long ago at a target from twenty five yards gatting 33 bbs in the neck and head with my dad saying, “you did amazing!”

As we watched the birds coming up eager to follow the hen. Then they started to get a little more careful not coming in as fast but looking around the open field from fear of danger. The two jakes that had come in a couple feet apart just following the hen as she was walking in. I could feel the tension rising knowing I would have to shoot soon. I felt like a lion on the prowl waiting for the prey to come a little closer.The bigger jake was on the side close to us, so I put the bead right on it’s neck and squeezed the trigger. . .

I felt the impact of the 870 hitting my shoulder standing up with my ears still ringing as I ran up to the bird seeing the bird hitting the ground dead. The hen had disappeared into the gully underneath us before I had pulled the trigger, so she was just sitting there. As I stood up she fled. The greyish-blue earlymorning sky looked like the noise from the 870 hadn’t even touched it.

When I got to the turkey it was flapping from the nerves still working, so my dad ran up by the legs moved to the edge of the clearing and took some pictures. It had happened so fast I had no time to react to the events.
When my dad was sending the pictures I put my hand on the bird and prayed for it coming into the field. In the end I found It’s not the same as going into a store and buying one, but more exhilarating and loud.

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