Rifle Hunting Turkeys; Anyone here do it?

Gone Ballistic

Well-Known Member
LRH Team Member
Joined
Aug 25, 2010
Messages
494
Location
Orofino, Idaho
Don't shoot at anything but the head. It's dead or you missed.
What happens when you miss the shot low? To say that you miss the headshot, you missed the bird is amazing. Apparently you only miss high, left or right but, never low.
It's legal to shoot blue grouse with a rifle in Idaho and I have seen more than one large area covered in bloody feathers when I was elk hunting. I imagine that it was supposed to be a headshot as well!
 
Last edited:

swe123

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 10, 2017
Messages
230
Location
Texas
What happens when you miss the shot low? To say that you miss the headshot, you missed the bird is amazing. Apparently you only miss high, left or right but, never low.
It's legal to shoot blue grouse with a rifle in Idaho and I have seen more than one large area covered in bloody feathers when I was elk hunting. I imagine that it was supposed to be a headshot as well!
How many turkey poorly hit with a shotgun go on to die?
 

86alaskan

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 8, 2014
Messages
1,134
Location
Central Missouri
I would try it, but in Missouri it's illegal. I imagine it's mostly due to safety reasons, as people seem to get shot with shotguns during the season, so a rifle would only be worse.

I can see where it would greatly improve your odds of harvest, but I can't say I've ever actually turkey hunted with the intent to harvest for harvest's sake. I turkey hunt in MO to get out out after a long winter, see the woods come to life, and to get up close and personal with one of the wariest of game species around. I like to carry a light 20ga SKB o/u and wait for them to get close. You get way more of the caveman adrenaline rush when you're 10yds from a turkey than you do plunking one at 200yds outside of their danger zone.
 

Gone Ballistic

Well-Known Member
LRH Team Member
Joined
Aug 25, 2010
Messages
494
Location
Orofino, Idaho
I would try it, but in Missouri it's illegal. I imagine it's mostly due to safety reasons, as people seem to get shot with shotguns during the season, so a rifle would only be worse.

I can see where it would greatly improve your odds of harvest, but I can't say I've ever actually turkey hunted with the intent to harvest for harvest's sake. I turkey hunt in MO to get out out after a long winter, see the woods come to life, and to get up close and personal with one of the wariest of game species around. I like to carry a light 20ga SKB o/u and wait for them to get close. You get way more of the caveman adrenaline rush when you're 10yds from a turkey than you do plunking one at 200yds outside of their danger zone.
Actually it's an over-harvest issue here in Idaho and I agree about the rush you get from decoying and calling them in. Quite a rush! I've had them within a few feet from me and to watch a Tom pounding a Jake decoy for 10 minutes is crazy...
 

J E Custom

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 29, 2004
Messages
10,168
Location
Texas
I'm all for using a rifle if you are under 14 years old. It would be one way to get kids into hunting, easier to get their first or second bird. Center of mass above leg joint, makes a happy kid. How about shooting copper bullets at geese on a pond with a rifle? Or ducks? How would that be different?

It would be illegal and it would not be fun at all if the game warden saw you and besides, it is dangerous to shoot a rifle at water level.

I killed my first turkey with a red rider BB gun and that was definitely sporting at sever years old.

Where I hunt, the turkey's are wary from being hunted and will run from a call during the fall.
And if you are lucky enough to get one within 40 or 50 yards, a head shot with your carry pistol will challenge your shooting skills.

It's all fun.

J E CUSTOM
 
Last edited:

wyowinchester

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 2, 2012
Messages
405
Location
N. WYOMING
What happens when you miss the shot low? To say that you miss the headshot, you missed the bird is amazing. Apparently you only miss high, left or right but, never low.
It's legal to shoot blue grouse with a rifle in Idaho and I have seen more than one large area covered in bloody feathers when I was elk hunting. I imagine that it was supposed to be a headshot as well!
We shoot prairie dogs at 200yds plus. Know you rifle, your load, your distance. Don't miss low. The hardest thing to do is getting their head to hold still long enough for a quality squeeze.
 

Equalizer

Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 19, 2019
Messages
85
Location
Gods country
I believe it was Jack O’Connor who wrote that the 22 Hornet was the best turkey hunting round in his opinion.

Ok guys y’all shoot those toms with whatever you like but you are missing the true art of turkey hunting. If you have some many that they are a pest , please contact one of us good ole boys and we will help you with that problem
“I remarked, a man who shot game with a shotgun was no good.” Tom Horn

Just hackin on ya man no harm meant. Me personally I’d rather use a rifle over a shotgun any day. I do like shotguns but I like rifles a lot more. I do realize it’s not legal to use rifles in some if not most places and I’m not advocating illegal behavior.
 

budlight

Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 30, 2004
Messages
931
Location
Nevada
I've taken more turkeys with my 270 from the time I was kid. Stands and feeders in Texas. You just use FMJ or hard copper bullets and go for body shots. Later I shifted over to my super accurate 243 win. Nothing like watching the toms fanning in a feild so far away that they don't even know that you are there and you pull out the legs on your tall Harris bypod and just start taking them all out
 

Pulpwood

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 7, 2016
Messages
341
I've taken more turkeys with my 270 from the time I was kid. Stands and feeders in Texas. You just use FMJ or hard copper bullets and go for body shots. Later I shifted over to my super accurate 243 win. Nothing like watching the toms fanning in a feild so far away that they don't even know that you are there and you pull out the legs on your tall Harris bypod and just start taking them all out
The only thing about that is you miss what turkey hunting really is and yes it all taste the same
 

budlight

Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 30, 2004
Messages
931
Location
Nevada
The only thing about that is you miss what turkey hunting really is and yes it all taste the same
Yes I have done my share of calling and stock in the forests. What you don't have is biting down on a piece of bird shot, destroyed birds, and actually having feathers pushed down inside the beautiful breast meat. I've managed to do some head shots with my 12 gauge.:) Oh, I almost forgot. My dad had an Olympic model bull barreled High Standard 22. Always had it in the pickup for what ever might wonder across the road. So I got some with 22's
 

Trending threads

Nightforce has great tracking capabilities, they are rugged, a bunch of elevation, holds zero forever, and reticles are designed for long range shooting. So if you are looking to shoot long distances constantly, then you need a scope that can take the abuse. -- gilmillan1


Culture Of Excellence At Nightforce Optics
By Len Backus

A high level of quality both in production and in service. Read More


Nightforce is such a solid combo of reticle, available elevation, glass that is good enough to shoot at the longest range you can dial. Nightforce has bullet proof construction that can handle the incidental horse rolling or some other rodeo action. -- bigngreen


Nightforce ATACR Scope Review
By Jeff Brozovich

The new NightForce ATACR is for sure a top choice for any long range shooter. Read More


The total package. Nightforce is the best I have used as far as turret feel and solid detents. I have never had one that didn't track right on and always return to zero. Nightforce NXS is the best value for everything I need. -- Broz


Nightforce Velocity 1000 Reticle Review
By Scott Shreve

I think Nightforce knocked it outta the park with this reticle! Read More

NightForce


Top