Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 18

During my freshman year, I stumbled
through the turkey woods somewhat how I
stumbled around campus - kind of confused
and not sure what to do or where to go.
But with VHS tapes and audio cassettes,
I studied hard to learn the language of the
wild turkey.
I'll confess, it was a struggle for a college kid to wake up so early amid so many
competing interests. I dabbled with the
box call and a simple push-button call, and
occasionally would hear a gobbler answer,
but nothing seemed remotely close to
coming in.
Sophomore year brought me to locator
calls. Many " who cooks for you " notes were
sounded through a plastic owl call in the
predawn hours. As daylight settled in, I'd
break the silence with what seemed like an
obnoxious attempt to sound like a crow. And
on some mornings, out of sheer desperation,
I'd even honk with my goose call.
But these calls, and my poor attempts
to sound like a hen, all proved ineffective.
I continued researching and reading what I
could to help make myself a better hunter.
During my junior year, I tried to get
serious with what seemed to be one of the
few options I had left - a diaphragm call.
Up until that point, I only heard obviously
over-embellished horror stories of hunt-

ers choking on these weird calls that are
placed awkwardly against the roof of the
mouth. In my effort to avoid that dire fate,
I followed instructions and paid close attention to recordings. I forced myself to learn
something new, and I did - I practiced and
didn't choke!
Then it happened; I began receiving
frequent responses from lovesick toms.
Birds came in, but did so silently, and by not
staying still, I upset my chances of taking
one. Back to the books, articles and videos.
Obviously, the sudden change in gobblers answering back wasn't solely due to
the diaphragm call. I now had nearly three
years of accumulated experience hunting
and calling spring turkeys.
I listened, I tried, I failed, I learned. And,
as I look back now, I matured.
I began college not fully committed,
unsure of where life was taking me, and
ready to quit shortly after I began, just
because it was difficult.
I began spring turkey hunting thinking
it would be easy, wanting to succeed for all
the wrong reasons, and ready to quit out of
frustration.
Thankfully, and as they should, those
years taught me a lot about life and turkeys.

Cover Painting by Melissa Gayman Ball
Daylight breaks with gobbling on the ground. It sounds like two
birds, in the exact spot they'd been during scouting forays the
previous week. Now hunting season has opened. If the stars align,
a bird might be bagged, and some of those morel mushrooms, too.
A limited edition of 150 signed-and-numbered giclee prints of this
month's cover, " Breaking the Silence, " are available from the artist.
Each 14- by 18-inch print costs $95, plus $12 shipping. Please add PA
sales tax, if needed. Framing is available for an additional $120. For
more information, email Melissa at melissaballart@msn.com. Visit
her website at www.turkeytails.com to learn more about her art.

18


http://www.turkeytails.com

Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021

Contents
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - Intro
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - Cover1
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - Cover2
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - Contents
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 2
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 3
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 4
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 5
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 6
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 7
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 8
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 9
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 10
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 11
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 12
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 13
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 14
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 15
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 16
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 17
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 18
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 19
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 20
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 21
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 22
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 23
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 24
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 25
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 26
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 27
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 28
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 29
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 30
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 31
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 32
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 33
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 34
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 35
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 36
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 37
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 38
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 39
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 40
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 41
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 42
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 43
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 44
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 45
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 46
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 47
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 48
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 49
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 50
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 51
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 52
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 53
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 54
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 55
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 56
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 57
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 58
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 59
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 60
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 61
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 62
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 63
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - 64
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - Cover3
Pennsylvania Game News - May 2021 - Cover4
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