Hunter Safety Tips

If you haven't taken a hunter safety course, now is a good time to do so. Most jurisdictions require this in order to carry a firearm. If this is not the case in your area, or the area in which you intend to hunt, it is still a good idea to do so. Contact the local hunting club or out-fitters and they will be able to suggest a hunter safety course, or may have one of their own which you can attend.

Code of Conduct

As a Responsible Turkey Hunter, I will:

Not let peer pressure or the excitement of the hunt cloud my judgment.

Learn and practice safe hunting techniques.

Hunt the wild turkey fairly.

Know the capabilities and limitations of my gun or bow and use it safely.

Obey and support all wildlife laws and report all violations.

Respect the land and the landowner and always obtain permission before hunting.

Avoid knowingly interfering with another hunter and respect the right of others to lawfully share the out-of-doors.

Value the hunting experience and appreciate the beauty of the wild turkey.

Positively identify my target as a legal bird and insist on a good shot.

Share responsible turkey hunting with others and work for wild turkey conservation.

Courtesy of the National Wild Turkey Federation

Before the Hunt:

Check with your doctor if you have any medical concerns.

Hunt within your physical limitations.

Let your hunting partners know if you have any physical limitations.

Let someone know where you are hunting and when you expect to return.

Work to have a basic understanding of first aid.

Courtesy of The Caller Magazine

During the Hunt:

Never carry an uncovered decoy any distance.

Set up against a tree that is greater in diameter than the width of your shoulders and taller than your head.

From a seated position, identify the clearest line of vision to your front. Establish a sight line that allows you 100 yards visibility. Then set your decoy(s) approximately 20 yards from your position.

Should you see other hunters (especially close to your line of sight) call out to them in a loud, clear voice. Their presence has already compromised your location and a soft call may only confuse them instead of alerting them to your presence.

If you are calling over decoys and elect to move to a new location, check carefully to ensure that no one is stalking your decoys. Check before leaving your set up. Should you see someone in the area, the previous rule applies.

Courtesy of The Caller Magazine

Defensive Turkey Hunter Safety Tactics

1. Select a large stump, blow-down, tree trunk, or rock that covers the width of your shoulders and is above your head. Place your back against the stump or rock when calling; a hunter is more likely to spot another hunter when moving to the front or side than from behind.

2. Do not wear any white, red, black or blue on your hunting outfit; this includes handkerchiefs, socks, underwear and even items like candy wrappers.

3. When calling, select a spot that is in open timber rather than thick brush:eliminating movement is more critical to success than hiding in heavy cover.

4. Be discreet and careful when imitating the sound of a gobbling turkey.

5. Always be alert. A good woodsman can always detect movement in the forest by watching other game or listening for the alarm cries of bluejays, crows, squirrels, or woodpeckers.

6. Continue to be on alert. When songbirds, crows or your turkey shuts up—look out; there's a good chance another hunter is moving in on your bird.

7. When another hunter is in your presence, never move, wave or make turkey sounds to alert the other hunter. You need to remain still and call to them in a loud, clear voice to get his/her attention. These tactics are safer than quick movements. Use common sense.

8. If you are calling over decoys and elect to move to a new location, check carefully to ensure that no one is stalking your decoys. Check before leaving your set up. Should you see someone in the area, the rule above applies.

Hunter Safety Courtesy of NWTF

Remember, safe hunting rules and regulations apply to all. This is a great sport. Hunter safety is the responsibility of everyone involved. Let's have fun and enjoy the battle of wits with Ol' Tom Gobbler, but never let your hunting companions down by abusing the rules. We all want to be able to go out again another day.

Hunter Safety Rules!

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