GUEST BLOG: Tommy Ellis, Turkey Introductions
Tommy Ellis of Following Ghost reminds us of the the traditions and memories that are passed along with learning how to hunt and sticking with it.
For years kids tagged along with Dad or Grandpa to the squirrel woods to learn the art of hunting. This was how generations fell in love with the sport, a .22 rifle or .410 shotgun were the tools of the trade to get started when I was a kid. Now things have changed, turkey hunting became extremely popular and turkeys are now the game of choice to introduce many new hunters to the woods.
Another great thing is more women are getting into the sport and turkey hunts provide one of the best ways to be able to mentor these new hunters. Ground blinds are plentiful, comfortable and provide enough room for a new hunter to sit with an experienced hunter and learn. Our hunters can sit and talk quietly while waiting on the birds, talking about equipment and techniques.
The rise of archery in turkey hunting is another step forward in getting some new hunters involved. Some don’t like the heavy loads and recoil of shotguns but the idea of taking a bird with some type of archery tackle is very appealing. Backyard practice with family and friends helps to encourage and get them excited for the hunt plus it doesn’t require a trip to the gun range.
While spring season is over in places and winding down in others many states have fall seasons or include a bonus bird in the archery deer season. Here in Tennessee the fall limit is liberal to say the least with the bonus of being able to take either sex. Fall hunting might even be a better time to get someone started if you have either sex hunts since the pressure to only take a mature tom is off. To a new hunter a jake or hen means just as much, later they can think about that big ol’ tom that struts in the back field.
If you have someone that is interested in hunting this would be a wonderful way to get them involved. Give them a call or two so they can practice, take them out to scout fields and teach them what to look for. Take a camera along to video their trips and save those memories. Encourage them to practice and teach them all you can before going to the woods.
The folks we start today will be mentors in the future.