Hunting spring turkey often leads to a medical condition called “turkey brain”, as hunting gobblers is
all you can think about, and all you want to do for several months. It is fun, challenging, and highly addictive. Avid gobbler fans are quickly picking up their best hunting crossbow to chase the elusive spurs and beards on their favorite feathered prey.

Why a crossbow? It is challenging and provides several advantages to hunters who have limited ground to hunt. Hunting crossbows are powerful, allowing to you shoot 40 yards or more with practice. When turkeys are strutting, and displaying their dominance they are not alarmed or spooked by the squeeze of a trigger or flight of an arrow. That means the remaining birds are usually not alarmed and can be successfully hunted again. Shotguns are noisy and can quickly educate birds and make them weary. Crossbows can be the perfect tool for taking multiple gobblers from the same
area without having them become decoy or call shy because of previous experiences with hunters.

When hunting out of ground blinds; a turkey shot with an arrow can be attacked by other gobblers looking to lay a licking on an old dominant bird flopping on the ground. If you have multiple tags that can be used on the same day, it isn’t uncommon to cock your crossbow a second time and shoot an honest double.

Make sure you know the anatomy of a turkey, as arrow placement is critical for a clean kill. These are incredibly tough birds and a poorly placed arrow often results in no turkey at the end of the trail. A sharp broadhead is imperative to success. It often amazes me to see an arrow fly straight through a deer, elk or moose, yet get hung up in a turkey upon impact. The layers of feathers, skin, and hollow bones act like the best crossbow target on the market to stop your arrow. Don’t be surprised to get good penetration, but no arrow exit.

Practice makes perfect and if you know the range and can be dead on target, there are broadheads designed to shoot the heads off big strutters. A shot in the vitals, through the wing is preferred by most archers.

Turkeys have incredible eyesight and don’t miss any movement or objects that look out of place. A crossbow with narrow, cocked limbs allows you to stay hidden whether you’re hunting in the open or on the ground, and allows you to maneuver appropriately when hunting in a ground blind. A good camouflage pattern never hurts either, since turkeys have such fantastic vision.

I’ve used the TenPoint Nitro RDX and Turbo XLT and love the front ends, because they are narrow and easy to maneuver. Success is often the difference of moving a couple inches to get on target undetected, or getting busted.

For more information on being successful in the spring turkey woods, go to

Brad Fenson is an avid outdoorsman who enjoys unique landscapes and outdoor adventures. His passion for the outdoors leads him across North America, collecting incredible photographs and story ideas from the continent’s most wild places. His passions are hunting, fishing, camping, cooking, and conservation. Fenson started writing over three decades ago and has been in print in over 65 publications in North America. Fenson co-authored several bestselling book projects and has earned over 65 national communication awards for his writing and photography.

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