Playing The Game
by Joe Drake
During the spring gobbling and mating season, the hens more frequently go to the gobbler than the gobblers go to the hens. Thankfully, gobblers can be enticed to seek out hens or what they think are hens IF they are not already over-blessed with the real thing.

Gobbling is more a territorial thing to warn other gobblers and get the hens’ attention. The visual strutting display is hardcore courtship and is the real deal for getting the hen. When close to a hen, the gobbler is looking for any opportunity to stop, strut and show his stuff.

If you call too much or too aggressively as the gobbler closes in, he might stop and strut, thinking the hen is on the way. Back down on the calling when he gets close, so that he's still a bit uncertain about the hen's location. Calling too much to a roosted gobbler can keep him up in the tree, waiting for the "hen" to show up.

Conversations With Gobblers
by Bob Foulkrod
Your turkey calling should match or seek to alter a gobbler’s mood. A hot, excited gobbler is best started with an imitation of a hot, excited hen, with a gradual tapering off. A less fired-up bird is generally also an initial candidate for some hot calling to see if you can get him more interested. With both, a lessening of aggressive calling is indicated as the gobbler closes in.

When the gobbler comes right back to your call or, even better, "cuts you off" by gobbling while you are calling, you've gotten his attention and you may well get him. Usually when a gobbler starts heading your way he quits gobbling or gobbles less frequently.

If you call at this time, you are making him stop coming to respond and he may "hang-up," waiting for the "hen" to come to him. When he gets in close, it's your turn to play hard to get. Call softly and infrequently to keep him interested and looking for you.

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