Game Cameras for Turkey Scouting

Using a game camera to scout for turkeys can be more difficult that using a game camera for deer.  Deer are a lot more predictable when it comes to following defined trails or returning to a scrape.  Turkeys tend to wander more across a wide area, so game camera placement can be difficult when seeking out turkeys.

I like to use a game camera to scout for turkeys when I'm hunting a new piece of property or an area that I am unfamiliar with.  I will do this in the months prior to the season coming in.  I don't like disturbing any areas that I actually plan to turkey hunt as the opening day draws near.  Here are a couple of tips that you can use to help use your game camera to check for the existence of turkeys.

  1. Mount your game camera a little closer to the ground than you would if you were scouting for deer.  Turkey are obviously not as tall as deer, and this can help to keep your scouting camera's passive infrared sensor from overshooting a turkey that passes near your camera location.
  2. Try placing your camera in the woods in areas that contain a good amount of red and white oaks.  Turkeys love acorns, in addition to various insects, grasses, other nuts, seeds and clover.  You will often see leaves in the area turned up as a result of turkeys 'scratching'  in search of food.  You can often capture good pictures and videos in these areas as turkeys come to forage.  Good mature trees with lots of horizontal limbs are also prime areas for turkeys to roost at night.
  3. Try placing your game camera on trees or fence posts on the edges of fields that contain clover.  This is another prime foraging area, but fields are also a big draw for strutting gobblers.  More often than not, these gobblers will head to the highest point in a field to do their strutting.  This may even be just a slight rise or mound.  A game camera post mount is ideal for covering these type of areas in an open field.

I like to try to find areas that the turkeys are going to roost in on the evenings prior to the hunt.  A gobble tube is ideal for making a male 'shock gobble' and give up his location.  Unfortunately, these gobble tubes often fool other hunters, so I will either not use them (or use the sparingly) during morning hunts when other hunters may be in the area.  I'll never enter the woods when trying to locate birds heading to roost.  I'll stick to the outer edges of the fields.  The sound from a gobble tube will carry a long distance, and even a mature bird often can't resist gobbling back at them.  Once you locate turkeys in an area heading to roost, it's just a matter of quietly slipping into the woods before sun-up the following morning.  By doing this, you can cut the distance between you and a roosting bird, and the sound of your hen calls can be the first thing they hear when they hit the ground.  For this, I prefer a mouth call, as they require no movement and will lessen the chances of you being busted by their keen vision.  The only part of your body that should move is your finger as you pull the trigger and put that bird down.

I hope these tips help.  Best of luck this season, and let me know how you do!

PS.  Check out this link of some scratching turkeys that I caught on my Bushnell Trophy Cam.  I had to reduce the quality in order to upload it, but hopefully you enjoy.

One Response to “Game Cameras for Turkey Scouting”

  1. Game Camera says:

    Nice tips! thanks sharing bud.

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