Posts tagged #hunting

To Kill a Turkey With a Turkey Wing, Bone Hunting Call


The beautiful, if somewhat goofy, Wild Turkeys are residents of my part of the country.  Apparently they are relatively recent immigrants, but they are well entrenched and seem very well adapted to the country.  In spite of the name, the Turkey is a native of North America.  They are a popular game bird, fun to hunt, and delicious to eat.  The feathers could hardly be surpassed for use as both quill pens and as fletchings for arrows.  I also use the tail feathers to make quicky disposable paint brushes of two different kinds.  All in all a very useful creature in traditional living.  One of the most fun crafty things to do with a dead turkey though is turkey wing bone calls.

It seems a poetic injustice that you can call a turkey in with a call made from a turkey, but these calls are quite effective.  I get the majority of my turkeys by calling them to me with these calls.  Others I just locate with the call, or failing to call them in, I am able to sneak up on them, or head them off as they travel.  The call is meant to imitate a turkey hen.  They don't sound exactly like a hen (at least not when I'm using them!) but hey, the proof is in the pudding and if they didn't work, I'd eat a lot less turkey.  No doubt I could refine my technique, but I lack incentive, because my technique is effective enough for the time being.  A horny turkey that has been working itself up into a turkeystosterone fueled frenzy for weeks is often less than discriminating when something resembling the plaintiff cry of a Turkey hen in need a of a good mating pierces the air. 

The calls are made from three of the wing bones on one side of the Turkey.  There are three sections to a bird wing. The outermost, smallest, pointed wing tip section is discarded.  The middle section contains two of the bones used and the large base section contains the third bone.  I have never used domestic turkey bones to make one of these, but I imagine you could make one well enough to at least bag a wild turkey to make another.  No doubt a mature wild turkey's bones will be more developed and substantial than a young fast grown turkey fed on a diet designed to achieve eating size as quickly as possible.  Same as a chicken.  You can eat the ends off of a domestic chicken bone and crush the remainder with your teeth, but try that with one of my mature free range chickens and you'll break a tooth.  If domestic turkey bones would work, this could make a great project for kids.

12 years ago when I first moved here.

12 years ago when I first moved here.

Dealing With Meat Under Varied Conditions, Heat, Aging, Spoilage Prevention

I filled my second deer tag recently and had a carcass to deal with just on the very evening that we entered into a heat wave in late September, with warm nights on top of it.  Fortunatley, I have dealt with this sort of thing enough to know not to panic.  My deer is all in the freezer now and I've been chowing down on delectable venison for days and will be for months to come.  Last night I was chowing down on raw venison that had hung through a warm night with no chilling right after being killed and then through most of a day that reached 103 in the shade, delicious!

For anyone of a homesteady mentality that will be planning to raise and slaughter animals, or who hunts much could probably be helped by this information.  It takes time to build confidence doing this sort of thing and to begin understanding boundaries, but it's great knowledge to have. Everyone used to know this exact type of stuff, because that is what everyone needed to know.  people used to get fresh meat from the butcher and needed to keep it without refrigeration or know how long they had to use it all up before it went bad.  I was looking through a cookbook recently from way back and it had a section on judging meat at the butchers to suss out how fresh it was.  Important skill to have at the time and also now if you choose to put yourself in positions where you need to make due under varied conditions.  I have more to say about this whole subject and things I'd like to expand on or that got missed in the video, but I have to go get ready for rain this weekend.  This video will have to do for now.  It's not a how to kind of thing as much as an expansion of what are probably most people's perceived boundaries regarding this subject.  It is certainly micro-niche information, but very important when you need it.

I also tagged in some neat footage at the end of a couple of yearling bucks play fighting near my house.  Very lucky to have the chance to capture that!