A Summary Of The Season And Statistics of All Gobblers Harvested During Our 2017 Season
2017 - A Mighty Fine Turkey Season
Despite the super-early arrival of spring, our turkey hunters did mighty fine.
How could we tell that spring came early? A couple of reasons: leaves appeared on our mesquite trees at least 30 days before their traditional arrival. And in mid-April, a hunter spotted three or four poults with their mother - easily 40 days too soon. Of course each year/season is different. That's the trait of Mother Nature As it turned out, being here early was the thing to do. Thankfully, we had no turkey hunters during the last three weeks of the season. By then, from all indications, the turkey games were mostly behind us.
Hunter success was the best in years. Each and every hunter collected at least one Rio. The forty turkey hunters took 68 birds, a whopping 170% success. Here is the breakdown:
Home Camp 32 hunters 54 birds 169% success 22 took 2/each 10 took 1/each
McManus Camp 8 hunters 14 birds 175% success 6 took 2/each 2 took 1/each
If we included the number of missed shots and DNF's (Did Not Find), the numbers would be even better.
Hunters reported seeing numerous jakes. Indeed, several jakes were taken and are included in the numbers above. But there are still many, many yearling males left over after the season concluded - good news for the 2018 season when they will be the easily-callable two's.
Due to the favorable hatches over the past three springs, the age mix of the gobblers was good. There were plenty of two-year-old toms, and there was an impressive number of older gobblers, as well. Spur length measurements confirmed this as 54% of the birds taken sported two spurs of an inch or more.
Range conditions have been quite favorable the past few months, but even so, the weights of the gobblers were, perhaps, a pound or two or three lighter than we have seen in other years. Only a few hefty ones over 20 lbs. were weighed. As we all know, gobblers lose considerable weight during the breeding season. Indeed, those carcasses brought into our processing facility rarely-ever show much of anything in their crop - maybe a few grains of milo and perhaps something green, but that's about it. So could it be that the 2017 gobblers were lighter because their breeding activities came earlier? It would seem to be a valid explanation.
The Texas spring turkey season in our part of the state begins the first Saturday in April. As the calendar falls, in 2017 that date was April 1. For 2018, the kickoff will come April 8. We were lucky for the early date. We will hope for a delayed spring next year. It is virtually impossible to predict when the calling will be at its peak. But since we hunt tens-of-thousands of acres, we can usually move hunters around to take advantage of whatever the birds might be up to at any given time.
As the season was drawing to a close, re-bookings accounted for pert-near half of next season's slots. So here is what to do:
Book your spring turkey hunt now, just to be sure you get in on the action.
Our open dates are listed elsewhere on this website. There will be no price change for 2018 - still $1500 for three days to take two birds with lodging, meals, bird cleaning, and airport pickup all included. Here's how to reach us:
Phone 325 374-7024 email@example.com
Best Gobblers of 2017
Best Beard - 12 Inches - Brad Milner, Kennesaw, GA
Best Spurs - 1 1/2" x 1 3/8" Scott Milner, Charlotte, NC