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Finally, it was time for me to head up to the farm for Missouri Turkey Youth Season. I went to northern Missouri right after school on the 9th and could not wait to get up there! I was excited that turkey season was finally here, and of course the four-wheeler riding always makes it fun too :) My dad scouted for birds the morning before and found several we could try to hunt. That night I got there we went to find some long beards for my hunt and ended up roosting 6 birds. It was definitely a motivation for me to get up! To be prepared, we got a pop-up blind and our chairs set up on the edge of the field where they all roosted. The weather was absolutely beautiful and we hoped our work would pay off the next morning.

The morning of the 10th we were up early and left the house by 5:40am! I was so excited. My dad and I got settled into the blind and shortly after day break the birds were going crazy! All 6 were close and gobbling their heads off the whole morning. Eventually they started flying down and 1 out of the whole bunch separated from the group and was headed our way. Unfortunately he ended up turning and going the other way and was out of range so I couldn’t get a shot. Thankfully, not even a few minutes later he came back headed straight towards the Shady Lady and King Strut decoys! I let him come into about 10 yards and made a perfect shot with my Thompson Center 20 gauge. Thanks to the decoys he came so close and made the hunt even more fun! It was one of the best turkey hunts I have ever had because of the show they put on for us!

My long beard ended up being 3 years old, with a 10 inch beard, 1 ¼ inch spurs, and 24 pounds! It was certainly a great bird to kill and it makes me look even more forward to when I can turkey hunt again!

I hope everyone has a great turkey season. Stay safe!
Taylor