All of us have listened to gobbler’s gobble in the spring, but how do we know what he wants to hear?
I like to call this “checking his temperature”.
It starts with him on the roost. If you’re lucky, you can close enough to get a visual of him strut on his limb or close enough to hear him drum. These are given indicators that he is hot.
If he’s roosted with or close to his hens he may not be that hot.
Once he flies down and you know for sure he’s on the ground and he’s gobbling repeatedly on his own, I’d say he’s looking for his hens.
If the gobbling stops and you hear a lot of purring and kackling he’s more than likely with his hens.
Then comes the hard part, “what does he want to hear”?
If he’s gobbling on the ground after he flies down, he’s usually telling his hens “Come to me”
Now it’s time to get a little aggressive with him but be careful not to overdo it. You don’t want him to think you’re too excited.
If you do not here him gobble after he flies down try to get him to shock gobble with a locator call ex: (crow, owl, woodpecker, whatever works for you) he probably will not answer you if you talk turkey to him considering he’s more than likely with his hens. After you have located him decide whether you can move closer to him. Sometimes it’s best to wait him out. After he’s finished with his hens, he will usually start back gobbling.
Turkey hunting is trial by error. Sometimes it works and a lot of times it doesn’t.
Always try to put yourself in the turkey’s shoes. It may get him to come that extra few yards you need to get a shot at him.
These are a few of the steps, I use to “Check his temperature”