So much of turkey hunting is being at the right place at the right time. To be successful you need to spend time in the field scouting and locating birds to increase your odds. My husband Chad and I were in my home state of Tennessee filming an upcoming episode of our show Shoot Straight. We had watched a gobbler strutting in the field three days in a row but there was no way to get to him without being spotted. We decided to roost him and try and get him right off the roost the next morning. Arriving extra early in the dark we set up on the edge of the field where he roosted the night before. As the sky started to backlight the tree we could see the gobbler standing on the limb. The songbirds started to sing and he decided to join in the choir. His thunderous gobbles resonated the morning air. We knew this was it. As the morning progressed he pitched 100 yards from our decoy and started to strut moving towards us very, very slowly. As he reached 70 yards we knew he just needed to make it a few more yards. I was ready. Then it happened a hen walked in the field and took him the opposite direction. We crawled around the point of the trees but she took him the other way. We sat and waited to see if he would come back but not a chance. Thirty minutes later we made our way back to pick up our decoy. Knowing there were other birds in the area we snuck to the edge of the tree line. Sure enough there was a turkey at the decoy. It had it’s neck wrapped around it and was attacking it. I could see the beard hanging down but something didn’t look just right. Just then it hit me. It was a bearded hen. I had never seen a hen with such a long beard. What a unique opportunity. I leaned my CVA Apex with the Bergara 12 Gauge turkey barrel on a big oak tree and looked through my Konus Atomic Site. The red dot made it easy for me to take quick aim. I cocked the hammer and squeezed the trigger. The turkey dropped. After I recovered my bird I measured the beard. It was a bearded hen with a 7 ½ inch beard. I had a biologist tell me only about 1 in 3000 hens will have a beard and usually they are only a few inches. Though I didn’t get the gobbler I truly took a bird of a lifetime that morning.
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