Missouri Spring Turkey Season
Missouri spring turkey season is characterized best by being called fast.
A quick three week season, a lot of wild turkeys and much cover habitat. However, it is the large number of turkeys and the timing of the season right during the peak breeding period of hen receptiveness that make the Missouri spring turkey hunts go fast. Fast to succeed and faster to fail.
During the three week season the toms are hard and fast on the hens. Right at first light the courtship begins with the toms gobbling and strutting on the roost itself.
At fly down this is the period in the year when the hen's first priority is to visit the toms before food or drink. The toms fired up at the quick action continue after the hens as they depart to lay an egg, eat and drink. Throughout the day the toms seek the hen with the hens concerns lie elsewhere than a repeat of the morning's activities. The toms, being typically male, refuse to quit trying and it takes a good wild turkey hunter to call or decoy one off the hens.
Then the 1 PM Missouri spring season daily limit hits and it's over for the day. The unsuccessful turkey hunter reviews the mornings events attempting to develop more effective tactics for the next day while those with tag filled find a check-in station.
Not all is lost for those that are not initially successful. We offer more lease land and more roosts are available for hunting to make every trip a good turkey hunt. If that first flock just won't cooperate the hunter has the option to pick up and move to another farm and try another and that one move to new ground may be all that is necessary to get things working. Or, that same hunter may stay setup on that same flock learning from every encounter and near shot until either making or breaking his of success or failure. In either case the hunter make s his own hunt. A far greater experience than any guide service could offer.
The real value is that from all the hunters than we have observe having the most success they are the ones that seek the hunt quality first, the mature tom second while passing on the jakes. If a turkey hunter is in that learning stage the jake is fair game and that is the turkey hunting we offer, that which is within the skill level of the hunter. Hunt to each hunters' skill level and build from there. No one is watching or keeping score and the frustration will always be part of turkey hunting regardless of the refinement a hunter may achieve.
Those same wild turkey hunters that have the most success will always tell how hard it is and when they achieve what may seem like mature toms far too easily it is they have more effectively disciplined their selves to the demands of wild turkey hunting. It is not that it is easy, it is that it is so very hard to be good.
Over the years we have observed many wild turkey hunters during the Missouri spring season tell a similar story theme about their hunts. A lot of birds, a lot of action and success well earned. Some are over in two day hunts while others, many others some springs, have gone into double digit day hunts getting close without closing the deal.
This is the time when there are far fewer lucky hunts and a greater degree of separation between those in learning and the dedicated and skilled hunter. Those that do believe they have the skill necessary to successfully harvest a Missouri tom will be well tested during the peak of the breeding cycle as that is when Missouri's season is scheduled. Many others will use the rationale that there was too much hunter pressure, or the birds were spooked coming off of the roost or any other excuse for their hunt failure. In all regard of a spring hunts success or failure in each case it is well earned by the hunter.
These wild turkey hunters need not despair as the sport of wild turkey hunting is the pursuit, setup and decoy of a highly and singularly motivated animal attracted by only the sexiest and most receptive of mates. For any human to believe he can match that of a sexy hen is simply arrogance. For even the most skilled Missouri spring season turkey hunter revels in the day when a lone tom is spotted and competition for his attention is unevenly split between no hen and that which may be a second choice under other conditions of a decoy and a poor excuse for a lonely hen call. On these days the dedicated hunter will recognize his luck and remain humble. However, it is the hunter that during the spring season that does truly call a tom off a hen to his call that has exceptional skill and the bragging rights we all desire to have. One way by which to define a trophy tom hunter.
Missouri spring turkey hunts are a great time to be in the field and a great test of any turkey hunter. DIY success is rightly earned and failure is plenty. Have a read of the turkey hunts in the testimonial section and below. Or, by continuing with the links at the page bottom for increasingly greater detail on our Missouri turkey hunts.
Let us recapitulate:
Peak breeding season.
Lots of wild birds.
Thickest habitat of our three states.
Half day hunts.
100% wild hunts.
Missouri is the toughest turkey hunting we have to offer. Exactly what the do it yourself turkey hunter wants. Otherwise, go to a guide service and hunt over a feeder.
Turkey Hunting & Habitat
A lot of parts to this picture. The first is habitat. Crop field, beans from last fall, along a currently dry intermittent wooded creek bed that looks thicker in the picture than it is up close. This is typical habitat found in that region where agriculture land use accounts for 55% of all land cover. This picture is also classic for watersheds within the agriculture area where many small valleys are farmed with the fields flanked by timbered ridges. Where are the flocks found? On the crop fields more often than in the woods. They go where the food is. In our case waste grain and not last fall's acorns.
Why the agriculture regions does us well is not just the large number of flocks it is also their size. Farm field fed toms typically weigh 22 to 27 pounds.
Another aspect of this picture shows how scouting with binoculars is very effective in this terrain.
An enlargement of the same turkeys showing a bachelor flock. These pictures were taken in late February, prime deer scouting time. This brings up the question of when is the best time to deer and turkey scout. It is unlikely these toms will be present at this spot or farm come breeding season. They will go where the hen flocks have anchored themselves.