First Blood

Share your tales (tall or otherwise) of hunting adventures.

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John Bly
Posts: 794
Joined: Thu May 13, 2010 12:32 pm
Location: Stephens City, VA

First Blood

Post by John Bly » Sat Dec 31, 2016 5:27 pm

My son Jacob and I went to cut wood today on our property. We had seen 7 bearded gobblers on a game camera and today was the last day of turkey season so we took a gun along. On the way to the woods my son spotted some turkeys near the fence but they disappeared. I went on to cut the wood and he went looking for the turkeys. Shortly he came back with a 19 lb gobbler with a 10" beard and 1 1/4" spurs. It was the first kill for a new barrel on one of my Maynards. I had just made it up and had not blued it nor made a forestock yet. It is a 17 HMR on my favorite 1882 back half of a Maynard. It shoots darn good with 20 grain bullets. The turkey was traveling away from him and he shot it just below the neck right in the spine and the bullet came out right where a wing is attached. Meat damage was minimal.
17 HMR Maynard turkey.jpg
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"Perfection consists not so much in doing extraordinary things as in doing ordinary things extraordinarily well"

BFD
Posts: 2027
Joined: Mon Jan 21, 2008 7:36 pm

Re: First Blood

Post by BFD » Sat Dec 31, 2016 7:26 pm

Nice job! That's a really nice bird for sure, but he seems light for a beard and spurs like that. In Iowa, that bird would weigh 25-28# in the spring.

We can't hunt them with rifles, here, but in the fall/winter, that would be a lot of fun.

John Bly
Posts: 794
Joined: Thu May 13, 2010 12:32 pm
Location: Stephens City, VA

Re: First Blood

Post by John Bly » Sun Jan 01, 2017 8:35 am

Brent, 19 lbs is a large bird here in VA. A few get larger but not many. The best eating is a 12-14 lb young gobbler. This one will be a little tough. He was in good shape, nice and fat, cleaned up very well. Yes, rifles are allowed here in VA and fall hunting is also. The best thing VADGIF does is close the turkey season during the deer season. This prevents lots of turkeys being shot by hunters with deer rifles that probably go to waste because of severe meat damage.
"Perfection consists not so much in doing extraordinary things as in doing ordinary things extraordinarily well"

BFD
Posts: 2027
Joined: Mon Jan 21, 2008 7:36 pm

Re: First Blood

Post by BFD » Sun Jan 01, 2017 8:41 am

Our birds run big for some reason, but that makes them good trading stock with other state G&F agencies. We traded a bunch of them for otters, for example. a bird that weighs anywhere in the midteens will be a jake here and a really good eating bird for sure. I hunt for the big ones, but I do have to chew a bit more. I usually fix one in Raton every summer. The biggest I've killed was 28#

This one would have been around 26# as I recall.
Image

I wish we could do fall hunting for turkeys with rifles - esp. .22 rimfires. But I'd build a .25-20 just for that purpose if they were legal.

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