What’s the shortest shot you’ve ever fired at a turkey? 15 yards? 10 yards?
Me? From a sitting position with 12 gauge in hand, I once (15 years ago) whiffed a walking jake at 7 yards. My closest kill is exactly 5 yards, but because I was bowhunting from a pop-up blind, that doesn’t really count.
As this video shows, using the belly crawl method behind a tail fan can get you super-duper close—even too close—to wild turkeys, especially territorial toms.
Obviously there are serious safety concerns whenever you stalk a turkey, and doing so behind a tail fan is, in the mind of some hunters, “asking for trouble.”
What turkey-killing techniques you decide to employ this spring, provided they fall within the letter (and spirit) of the law, are solely your business. Have I stalked turkeys? Yes. Will I do so again? Probably. Have I belly crawled during shotgun season behind a tail fan toward a turkey? No.
But every situation is different, and each person has to weigh “risk vs. reward” every time they shave, drive to work, climb a treestand, parachute from an airplane—or stalk a strutter.
Until next time, be safe out there.
Editor's note: If you're unable to view the video, click here.