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Did I make the right call?

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Did I make the right call?

Old 05-15-2013, 11:30 AM
Giant Nontypical
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 5,425

Originally Posted by bghunter777
They had beards I promise! If they have a red head they have a beard. I understand someone making a personal decision not to shoot a jake but turkeys once they get to be 2 years old are all pretty much the same bird I hunted several states this season and shot a jake as well as a bird that was 25lbs with a rope of a beard but my favorite hunt was about an 18 lb 2 year old that gobbled 100 times for an hour before I was finally able to circle around for the 3rd time and get in a place he would commit to coming in.

I have met guys who pass on birds that are not big enough and that is fine if it makes them happy. That is why we are all out there to do it the way we want. Personally if its 18 or 22 lbs that doesn't change my enjoyment at all and I have shot many 3+ year old birds.

The OP had them at 15 yards and couldn't see a beard but you are in PA and saw those beards in CO???

Dang, boy, you have some sharp eyesight.....
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Old 05-15-2013, 08:38 PM
Fork Horn
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Turkey-Town Kansas
Posts: 344

100% Personal preference.... BUT, that being said, I have one property where I NEVER shoot jakes (5 years now. The birds I am shooting now are SO much more rewarding!! If you are a meat hunter or just looking to get a "win" I totally get that! But if you are hunting private land and think your jake may have time to grow... you might like a 26 pound monster with 1.5" spurs and a foot long beard in a few years!

But like I said.. personal call, and I have shot my share of good eatin Jakes!

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Old 05-16-2013, 08:43 PM
Thread Starter
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Colorado Springs
Posts: 2

Thanks to all for your replys! I understand about people taking the shot, but the deciding point for me was the lack of visible beards. I have taken a LOT of crap from fellow hunters around here that think I should have taken one and hope for the best if the DOW officer checked us. Not a way I wanted to take one this year.
I also want to teach my kids to value nature, learn about game management, and honor the wildlife. Ethics are a part of that. I might have been able to say that I got one, but if I have to sneak the bird out and hope I don't get checked, that isn't ethical to me.

If people have other views on this, I am interested in hearing them.
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Old 07-13-2013, 06:34 PM
Fork Horn
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 270

The way I see it the jakes you shoot won't be around
To gobble as 2 year old Toms. Personally I enjoy
Hearing the Goggles at least as much as I enjoy
Eating a bird. I think you'll. be happy you passed
Next spring.
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Old 07-14-2013, 08:26 AM
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Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Indiana
Posts: 7,182

I wouldn't have shot any of them. Even if it meant tag soup. That actually happened to me in Nebraska this season. I could have killed a decent jake but I was wanting a longbeard for my grand slam. So I passed on them. By passing means more longbeards for next spring. A lot of times its not about the kill but memories that you make.
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Old 07-25-2013, 06:31 AM
Fork Horn
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Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Kansas
Posts: 339

One thing about ethics is that its a decision you make on your own, whether its turkeys or bowhunting or whatever... asking other folks opinions on the matter doesnt do anything for you. Stash the memory of the hunt and go get them next year, it's not a competition.
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Old 07-28-2013, 05:24 AM
Nontypical Buck
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 1,926
Default A good long term hunter...

is going to remember shots he never took. All part of hunting past a couple of years.
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Old 08-02-2013, 06:10 PM
Typical Buck
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Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Hatton, Alabama
Posts: 520

I'm seeing a lot of the jake myths come up here.

First one is that shooting jakes is like shooting spikes. For one the reason for not shooting spikes is to improve deer herd health. Shooting jakes does not affect the overall health of a population. The other reason to not shoot spikes is to improve the gene pool. This is not a concern with turkeys.

Second myth is that there will be more big gobbling birds next season. If a bird comes in gobbling hard and turns out to be a jake what have you lost in taking him? Nothing. Also the mortality rates for turkeys tell us that a jake has no better or less chance of surviving than any other bird. Just because he was there this year doesn't mean he will survive till next season.

Having said all that I usually won't take a jake if a big bird is around. I will shoot one if I am wanting some turkey meat though. You can't cook spurs and beards.
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