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Eddie Salter Nationally-Known Turkey Hunter and Caller Tells About Tough Toms

More of Eddie Salter’s Most-Frequently-Asked Turkey-Hunting Seminar Questions

Click to enlargeEditor’s Note: Eddie Salter began hunting at the age of eight near his home in Evergreen, Alabama. After learning turkey-hunting techniques from his father and grandfather, Salter called-in and harvested his first gobbler at the age of 10. Salter began participating in competitive turkey calling and amassed an impressive list of titles, including seven Southeastern Open Turkey Calling Championships, six Alabama State Championships and two World Open Championships. Named one of the top-10 sportsmen in the U.S. in 1986 and 1989 and with almost four decades of turkey-hunting experience, Salter is recognized as one of the country’s leading authorities on turkey hunting. He’s appeared on ESPN, TNN, The Outdoor Channel and ABC’s 20/20 TV show and in numerous hunting videos and television commercials for Hunter’s Specialties and has been featured in many outdoor magazine articles and radio interviews.

1) What do you do on days that turkeys just don’t gobble?Click to enlarge
Salter: If I’ve hunted that area prior to this hunt, and I’m confident that a turkey is there, then I go to where I think the turkey is and call for 15-20 minutes. If I don’t hear a bird gobble, I’ll move into another region where I know turkeys are.

2) How do you determine whether or not you’ve got turkeys on your property?
Salter: I try to cover every inch of that land. I walk the main roads and look for a turkey sign. The reason I choose to walk the roads and creek banks instead of dried creek beds and/or fire lanes is because they’re cleaner. I can move through them more quietly. I can ease around, and I can stop and look. You really want to be out there the first 15 minutes of daylight, because generally the birds will gobble on their own then. You don’t have to make them gobble, since they’ll tell you they’re there.

3) Do you believe in using turkey decoys?Click to enlarge
Salter: Over the years, I haven’t hunted that much with turkey decoys, but here lately I’ve had a chance to experiment with many-different decoys. I’ve started using real-life mounted decoys, and I’ve been really successful with them. As a rule of thumb, I tell hunters to take two hen decoys and one jake decoy with them when hunting. That combination seems to work a lot better than only using one decoy. I suggest putting the decoys in open spots like fields, however, make sure you have your back to a tree when you have decoys out. Then you’ll always have a clear field of view, so you can see other hunters that may try to sneak in and shoot your decoys. Always think safety first.

4) Do you use multiple calls when hunting turkeys?Click to enlarge
Salter: Yes, I use many calls. Many times I’ll use a box call and a mouth call at the same time. At other times, I’ll use a slate call and a mouth call together. Using multiple calls to call in a gobbler seems to work best in the early part of the season, because that’s when you hear more than one hen calling at the same time. Often if you can sound like a flock of turkeys, that ability makes a gobbler feel really good. Instead of going to one girlfriend, he thinks he’s going to a sorority full of girls.

5) When do you call to a turkey?
Salter: Normally I like to let a turkey gobble on his own, and I enjoy trying to answer a turkey, instead of letting him answer me. I always ask people the same question, “Don’t you feel good when you call and a turkey answers?” Well, when you reverse that role, don’t you think that your answering a tom will make the turkey feel good? I think you get inside turkeys’ heads when you do that, and you can force the action, instead of waiting for it to happen. To answer this question more completely, if you call to a bird, he flies down, and he’s started your way, don’t call to him anymore. Let that be your last call.

Today's video tip from Eddie Salter


Check back each day this week for more about "Eddie Salter Nationally-Known Turkey Hunter and Caller Tells About Tough Toms"

Day 1: Eddie Salter’s Crooked Toe Tom
Day 2: Why Turkey-Hunt Pine Plantations with Eddie Salter
Day 3: When Turkeys Don’t Want Aggressive Calling
Day 4: Some of Eddie Salter’s Most-Frequently-Asked Turkey Hunting Seminar Questions
Day 5: More of Eddie Salter’s Most-Frequently-Asked Turkey-Hunting Seminar Questions

 

Entry 553, Day 5