Well the NYS DEC is projecting a lackluster year for 2018 due to low birthrates in 2016 & 2017. But my season started out exciting. I started off the day on time for once. I was setup and sitting in the woods by 5:20. Shortly thereafter they started gobbling. I called one down from the roost and brought it in. He came in all nice and strutting and put on a great show.
But he like the rest of the birds this morning hung up on the ledge about 25 yards out. Not that I can't shoot that distance it just wasn't a great shot with the golden rod there. Plus where he was there were some saplings in the way. I decided to wait for him to hit a small opening on the other side of a tree, as I could see he had enough of a beard to be a shooter. He went behind the tree I drew up from behind my Mojo Scoot-n-Shoot but he never came out. He had been stretching his neck and looking down at me. Must have seen something he didn't like.
So after a couple of minutes I realized he was gone and I decided to try out my new Scoot-n-Shoot. Well the emphasis with that thing is definitely on the Scoot. I'm not Scooting on my hands and knees for 100 yards. I did the crouch and walk and it didn't work. I didn't know exactly where he had gone but figured he was just out in the field on the other side of the road. I was right. I was creeping across and he saw me before I saw him. All I saw was him running off into the woods.
Now it's 6:30, so I went back and sat down. I quickly got another bird going off to my right by the river. A little while later a pair of young Tom's came down the road. They stopped about 60 yards out stretched their necks and went off across the road into the woods.
Now I know there's something they see they don't like. Maybe its the orange safety tags on the Mojo. I think I'm going to try to drill the rivets and replace them with snaps (I just took a closer look and realized they are snaps, they're off now). But they kept talking and I brought them around to my left where the first bird had been. They again hung up on that ledge. This time I decided to take the shot at the bigger one. Well patients is not my virtue. The Golden Rod ate up my shot, and maybe I was a little off too. I'll own it, it was a miss on a poor shot. So they flew off. (7:30)
Now I figure I've got to get into a better spot. So I headed down the roadway to the cut corn field at the end. There was a hen playing peek-a-boo at the end of the road. She did not find me holding up my Scoot-n-Shoot as I walked towards her very funny. She ducked off into the woods and I got set up. (8:30)
About 9 I see the hen come back out to my right. She's hanging out in the cut corn about 100 yards. About 9:30 I see a Jake come out to join her. Neither was paying any attention to the calls. So I sat until about 10 and called it a day. I was hungry and had some work to do. Here's to tomorrow.