The first day of spring signals a silence in my car that is answered by clucks, squawks and yelps from a mouth call as I prepare for the upcoming turkey season.
While most of the moms in the school carline think I have lost my mind, a few in the group give me a little nod as if they cannot contain their excitement either.
I wish more moms could experience the thrill of turkey hunting. I also wish they knew that moms make great turkey hunters due to their patience, ability to multitask and their talent to implement the same hunting-like tactics they already use with their kids.
According to the National Wild Turkey Federation, there are two species of wild turkeys, the Ocellated turkey of Central America and the North American wild turkey.
A quick tutorial on wild turkeys
The North American wild turkey species can be divided into five subspecies. Eastern wild turkeys are “the most widely distributed subspecies east of the Mississippi River, they can be found in 38 states and numerous Canadian provinces.” Male turkeys, or Toms, are typically bigger than the females and more colorful on their heads and necks.
Toms with the longer beards are bigger, older and are the target of this mom during the spring turkey season.
How the Patience of MotHerhood Parallels A Successful Turkey Hunt
From the moment our kids are born, moms are practicing patience. My kids rarely want to perform on my timeline. This same patience is a great asset during turkey season.
Turkeys can be fickle, and as soon as a hunter learns their pattern, they seem to change it up, just like my kids.
Or, many a hunter has expressed frustration on learning where the turkeys roost or sleep at night, only to have the turkey go in the opposite direction of the hunter after they fly down. Patience is the key to success when it comes to turkey hunting.
Moms also make good turkey hunters due to their ability to multitask
Having multiple children means wanting more than two hands on many occasions. Turkey hunting is no different.
I remember setting up for my first hunt and looking down at my firearm thinking “how is this going to happen?” If it takes two hands to use the slate turkey call and two hands to fire a shotgun, I don’t have enough. Thankfully, my two kids have prepared me for such instances and I just kept my firearm close while using the call.
Mind games Work As Well on Toms as They Do On Kids
The most widely debated topic while hunting turkeys are tactics. Some hunters like to sit in one spot for hours while others like to change location based on where the Toms are working an area. Either way, turkey hunting is about playing mind games with the Toms to make him think you are the most desirable female turkey.
While calling one morning, I found myself comparing these mind games to the ones I use on my kids at the dinner table. “Does this have cheese in it,” my oldest will ask. “Why? Do you like it?” I will reply. These same mind games that teach our kids independence and how to be little humans, can be applied to a successful turkey hunt to lure the Tom into thinking we are the most desirable female.
Turkey hunting can be exciting, especially when a gobble is heard close by. To make it successful, moms can implement skills they already have in their wheelhouse. Through patience, multitasking, and tactical mind games any mom can be a successful turkey hunter.
Plus, moms can even drop their kids at school, head out to hunt and have a fresh turkey dinner later that night.
Happy hunting, mamas!