Day four came with a bird gobbling near me. I called and it started coming to me. The bird was on the move, but it was also a county road and on posted land. I had to get it to me; I could not go toward it at all.
So there I was with the dilemma of choice. Like a biblical temptation of Adam and Eve’s apple. The temptress of that gobbler trying to lure me to the other side was strong, and I had to fight it off. I had to make a decision. Do I fight the good fight? Do I cross the line and slip into the darkness?
I admit, I thought about sneaking across the line and going after that bird. The temptation was there. At 5 a.m. in the morning who would know? I would be out of there before anyone would realize it. I fought it off and stayed true to my values of the sanctity of private property ownership and property rights. I don’t want people hunting my land without talking to me, so I do the same. I honor those posted signs. There are folks out there thinking: “What a stupid jerk, you should have done it, I would have.” Well, I didn’t and that’s the way it is.
Anyway, back to the bird. I called and it started coming to me, gobbling and gobbling for some girly action. Well he got near the road and did a dead stop. He strutted back and forth, but would not cross the road.
I was back in the woods a legal and safe shooting distance so I never saw the bird, just heard him wandering and strutting back and forth up and down the roadway. I tried my best to get him to cross, but he was hung up and waiting for me. The next thing you know, a car went by, and ended it all. He was spooked and the party was over. After that it was dead silence from him. I waited for about another half hour just in case, but he was gone.
I’ll be back out in the woods tomorrow, trying to lure in a bird. I like to wander about, “run and gun” hunting, so who knows where I’ll be. One thing’s for sure, it won’t be on posted land.
That’s hunting! Good luck to all you turkey hunters out there. Enjoy the day and be free!
Rich Redman is a retired District Conservationist for the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service and an avid outdoorsman. His column will appear regularly. He may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.