While you might think that you should call off your turkey-hunting trip when it starts raining, you don’t necessarily have to do that. You’ll just need to change your hunting strategies a bit to make the day a success.
It’s a misconception to think that turkeys will run for cover when it rains. In fact, they tend to form groups in open fields and meadows.
Turkeys move around when it’s raining, so you can still hunt them. If you’re hunting turkeys early in the season, they will be ready to breed, so they’ll be more responsive to decoys and calls. To ensure you bag turkeys on a rainy day, here’s all you need to know.
Can You Hunt Turkeys In The Rain?
You can certainly hunt turkeys when it’s raining. You’ll need to follow some important tips, such as dressing for the weather so that you stay comfortable, especially if your turkey hunting session is a long one.
You’ll need to know how turkeys behave when it rains, adjust the way you approach the turkeys so you don’t alarm them, and have the right equipment.
One of the most important things you should do when hunting turkeys in the rain is stay alert. The rain or wind could cause you not to hear when a turkey is moving closer to your hunting site, so focus on your surroundings as much as possible.
How Do Turkeys Behave During The Rain?
When it’s raining, turkeys tend to flock to open areas, such as fields, so that they can feed on corn or bugs. It might sound strange for turkeys to make the most of rainy weather by foraging for food, but it’s actually the perfect opportunity for them to do so.
When it rains, insects and bugs come to the surface, so this enables turkeys to find food without putting in much effort. As they have an excellent field of vision, turkeys also feel safer during rainy weather by remaining out in the open.
If the rain is a bit heavier, you should move to the closest trees. This is where some turkeys will go to find cover from the pelting rain. They might even respond to your turkey calls from this area, so don’t hesitate to try this method.
How To Find And Approach Turkeys In The Rain
You can find turkeys in open areas, such as fields and pastures, when it’s raining. However, turkeys will sometimes spend time in their roosts. If you know where the turkey roosts are, try to set up your blind within close proximity to them.
When approaching turkey outdoors in the rain, there are some important tips to bear in mind so you don’t scare them away.
You might not even have to approach the turkeys. Once you’ve scouted the area, you will have a better understanding of where the turkeys like to feed, loaf, and roost, so you can set up your blinds there. This will ensure you can ambush the turkeys when they move.
If you do want to approach the turkeys, the rainy weather can help you by concealing the sounds you make. Use the nearby vegetation, such as creek beds, ditches, or brush, to keep yourself out of sight.
If there’s fog, this is your friend! It will make you less visible to the turkeys. These birds also do various activities during foggy weather, such as feeding, breeding, preening, and loafing.
Equipment Needed For Hunting Turkey In The Rain
You might need a few extra accessories and items for a rainy turkey-hunting trip. Here are the essentials you’ll need.
- These should be resistant to fog and moisture, so you’ll be able to see through them clearly on rainy days.
- Wear lots of layers, such as thermal underwear. Finish off the layers of clothing with a breathable, waterproof rain jacket.
- Wear waterproof pants so that you can crawl along the wet ground if required.
- Ponchos over clothing are recommended if it’s rainy and cold.
- Wear rubber boots. These will protect your feet from the cold ground and make you more comfortable.
- A pop-up blind is essential for giving you protection against the elements and offering you concealment.
- Ensure it’s light, portable, and easy to set up within seconds.
- A camo blind will prevent turkeys from detecting you.
- Set up your turkey hunting blind before it starts raining so it’s ready for you.
- Take turkey calls in your backpack to help you attract turkeys to your hunting area.
- Increase the turkey call volume so that the sound is carried by the wind and can be heard during heavy rain.
- Using turkey decoys in the rain can be useful because it attracts turkeys to areas where you want them to go.
- Set up some decoys in open areas, this may cause turkeys to land in your spread as they flock together in the rain.
- Choose a mix of different turkey decoys, such as hens and gobblers, and some that are standing and feeding, so you get a realistic spread.
Should You Just Wait For Better Weather?
Although turkey hunting during rainy weather can work, you shouldn’t do it if the weather’s really bad. If there’s heavy rain, hail, or a thunderstorm, this can make your hunting trip miserable.
It also doesn’t help that turkeys will find areas to hide when the weather’s really bad. Even if they don’t, you won’t have decent visibility, so you’ll be wasting your time out there.
But, if there’s a cloud burst of rain, don’t pack up your hunting gear just yet. Wait it out a bit. If the sun peeks out from behind the clouds, this will energize the turkeys and you won’t want to miss the opportunity of bagging them then.
Below, we’ve answered two frequently asked questions regarding hunting turkeys.
Is stalk-hunting turkey legal?
You’ll have to check your state laws when it comes to stalking turkeys as it’s not legal in every state. Some states prohibit this hunting method.
What are good turkey calls to use in windy conditions?
Friction or box calls are recommended when hunting turkeys in windy conditions. They produce a loud volume and high pitch, so the turkeys will hear you.
If you want to hunt turkeys in the rain, you’ll need to adjust your strategy and get different equipment.
In this article, we’ve featured the most important essentials to carry in your backpack, how to dress for the weather, and when you should call off your turkey hunting adventure for a day of better weather.