• GUESTS

    If You  want access  to member only forums on FM, You will need to Sign-in or  Sign-Up now .

    This box will disappear once you are signed in as a member.

  • Join In - We Share Fishing Reports & Outdoor Information Here

     
      You know what we all love...

      The same things you do!!!! Share what you love & enjoy in the outdoors as well as thank those whose posts you 'appreciate.'

      Have Fun!!!

Sign in to follow this  
movern

Turkey feeding

Recommended Posts

movern

Any of you feed turkeys through the winter? If so what is their preferred food, corn? Or do you feed a specialized feed?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hammer Handle

Corn and oats. My dad feeds they away from his house.

He does put some feed in the yard...but he doesn't want them to "go tame". He just likes to see them.

If I could figure out how to post a picture, I would show you a picture of 10 young toms in his yard last winter...10 feet from the house.

Funny, if the yard is different at all, they won't come in. For example, if I leave my car in the yard...no turkeys. If I "hide" it in the shed...there they are.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
HateHumminbird

Feeding turkeys, like any game, should be done with great caution and care. By creating an "artificial" food source, you're concentrating their movements, both geographically and temporally (time). You open them up to increased predation both to/from the feeding sites, or at the feeding site if nearby cover for predators exists, and at times, create another hazard in the form of car/turkey accidents by leading them greater distances across roads.

At the same time, who doesn't like seeing turkeys! smile.gif I sure do, and have fed them during select winters in the past. My biggest beef with folks that feed is those who do it inconsistently. Just like any food source, they begin to structure their schedules around it, and depend on it more and more. If you're not prepared to go through some major corn or other feed, and feed continuously throughout the entire winter, I wouldn't start. Starting/stopping hap-hazzardly throughout the season doesn't do the birds many favors, and increases unnecessary travel (when they head all the way to your place for no food), costing them valuable calories during hard winters.

Make sure your feed is in good condition and isn't moldy leftovers from the elevator (a favorite low-cost option available at rural feed stores). Not that you can't use waste corn, I do, but make sure it isn't wet, moldy, and is as free of foreign material as possible.

Perhaps the biggest reason to avoid feeding revolves around the human psyche and our "ownership" issues we all so often have with wild game. Seeing the same tom, bearded hen, or group of jakes almost everyday during the winter makes one grow attached to them, whether we like to admit it or not. I know this as I feel many of the same things when I hear that the single spurred tom with a 4" beard was shot a mile down the road. He was never "my" turkey and I shouldn't have had feelings of disgust when he was taken, but I did. smile.gif

It's a fun thing, and perhaps no better way to keep tabs on your birds. It's also an incredible learning experience. I can't tell you how many dollars in excess heating I've paid because of wide open windows in March, learning to cluck/purr/whine like they do. However, think carefully about any feeding you do this winter for turkeys, and make sure you keep their best interests in mind as well as your own.

Joel

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Surface Tension

Like Joel says, once you start feeding you have to keep at it all winter. Something else you might not be considering is cost. How you feed will determine that. If theres and unlimited supply of feed you might be biting off more then you can chew as a huge flock develops. The farm I hunt had over 150 turkey's one winter picking threw his field. Turkeys from around the countryside heard of easy pickings at farmer Johns. Hard to believe but I saw the video tape from the DNR using nets fired by canons to catch a couple dozen turkeys that were relocated in Mille Lacs county.

If you put out a couple gallons of corn per day you might just get the local birds. I saw one county in another state that didn't have the winter feed to support turkeys so they had a winter feeding program. They had elevated feeders(old flat bed trailers) to keep the deer herd from getting into it. The ground predators couldn't get at them either.

If I had turkeys around here I'd be feeding them. I feed deer at home and its fun to have them around.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.
Sign in to follow this  



  • Your Responses - Share & Have Fun :)

    • Hoey
      Oh I forgot to mention is was b*#%hing cold.  Minus 33 Saturday morning and -36 on Sunday morning.  We had to leave one sled behind at the cabin on Saturday and it took forever to get the Solo started on the auger.  Maybe time for an electric.     Nice niece catching day Pro-V!!!
    • Mike89
      more slush for you!!! 
    • PRO-V
      My niece got a 28" walleye and a 44" sturgeon the same day a couple days ago. 
    • Hoey
      That is what we experienced too.  Three of us were up, fished Thurs, Fri, and Sat.  Lots of little ones, sniffers, the type that keep you busy, wear your arm out jigging on.  We only kept 15" eyes and 14" sauger or better and ended up just short of our limit.  Many 14" eyes released along with 13" sauger.  Others indicated a tough bite as well.  There was one group in the cleaning shack that had some, maybe a 1/4th of their catch, in the 16 to 19 inch range.  We fish with fatheads and some frozen emeralds.  Ice thickness-wise, the auger head was just above the shavings pile, so the ice is growing quickly.  Snow on the lake is hard.  Good Luck.  
    • smurfy
      😫 boy i feel the love here!!!!!!!! interseted to hear what this additional snow did to the lakes!!!!
    • CJH
      That is correct.  We were just up at LOW out of Zippel Bay and as far as we could tell, eveybody up there was out of live shiners.  We were able to stop on the way and pick up live emerald shiners @ Big Dicks Bait Shop in Kelliher.  This was on the 17th, so if you go that route, I'd call first to make sure they still had any.  Fishing was a little slow for us, but it was right when the cold front came screaming in, good luck!
    • Jplante
      Thanks for reply, problem is red door isnt letting anyone with wheel house or skid house out to the flat or past the heave,yet. So everyone is kind of pilled up on the first/second breaks. I am thinking once they start allowing more travel it will start to thin out by me. I may give it another week or so and see how it looks. 
    • gunner55
      Yeah, you better stay home, smurfy. 😉 Probably catch more. 😀  We got  a lot here too. NOT!!!  2 1/2 - 3" at most  
    • Parmer
      The key is emerald shiners. The ones you can get in the cities are not the same as emeralds up there. Frozen ones work great for jigging. 
    • Parmer
      Well I was out off the edge of a mud flat in 32 ft in a great spot away from People. 4 fish Friday through last Sunday. Missed a couple others. Really nice fish. 25 inches was the smallest.  It was a tough bite. I would say maybe a little deeper and I think a big key IMO is getting away from the groups.