Why are the gobblers always on your neighbor’s property and not yours? The answer to that could be a number of reasons. You must look at what a turkey needs and on the other hand, things a turkey doesn’t like, the solution may be easier than you think. Just like all wild critters, they need food, water, cover and space. What don’t they like? Pressure!
- Food sources like clovers (Clover Plus), corn and chufa (Turkey Gold Chufa).
- Bugging habitat – mowed open areas or oftentimes your whitetail food plots create excellent bugging habitat. Grasshoppers can make up 80% of a young poults diet.
- A reliable water source – every living thing needs water to survive and wild turkeys will be found close to a dependable water source.
- Grit – this is something many managers are missing, but don’t realize it. An old stream bed, a gravel county road or a wash-out on a ridge side can all be great grit sources for your birds. They need these small pebbles to grind down food so that it is more easily digested. If you don’t have this habitat feature, simply bringing in a load of gravel and putting it out in several locations should suffice.
- Cover – somewhere nearby they will need nesting cover. Typically the same type of edge cover that whitetails love will be adequate. Native warm season grass areas are also desired nesting habitat.
The above five habitat features are relatively easy to make or install on your property. One major problem could simply be you are lacking roost trees. This feature is obviously a bit more difficult to solve. Food, water and cover can all be added to a property relatively quickly, but roost trees will take years to come about. More information can be found at the NWTF.