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I've been hunting public land in preble County hard this year and since the start of season have only heard 4 gobbles this year. Last year I hunted the same areas and would hear at least 20 to 30 gobbles a day for most of the season. Any one else been experiencing this silence this year or is it just me?
 

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I can't really respond about this year as I only hunted 3 days & had 1 bird gobble several times before he made a mistake. I didn't hunt last year but 2019 & 2020 heard almost no gobbling & no sightings. This was all on private property where, in years past, it was nothing to her 6-8 or more birds.
 

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I have only been out 4 days this year. Two of the days heard no gobbling. The other 2 days had some birds gobbling on the roost and then nothing after they hit the ground.
 

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Worst season ever. Not one bird out of nine of us. Heard maybe 5 birds total. Even the birds we got in real close on didn't respond to calling. They'd just keep going. I'm no expert turkey hunter but dang. I can usually get a shock gobble or some kind of response.
 

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Two properties I hunt I heard hundreds of gobbles...the other two, one bird. The bird I killed had a lot to say...couldn't resist my naughty hen talk...even with a real hen between us!
 

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Any ideas on why that would be happening like that?
Well, in my observations...one farm has too many raccoons. I bowhunt that farm and I know. I truly think they have the greatest impact on nest survival there and are removed when possible. There are lots of coyotes and birds of prey, too, though their impact is probably minimal. The place used to be crawling with turkeys, but has sadly been trending down for many years. There a few birds around and I just keep praying for good hatches and poult survival...and try to help remove predators. The only real change to the woods itself was tree loss from storms that the landowner decided to remove in Jan & Feb and some in Mar. That made some birds relocate as tree removal interrupted roost time.

Second farm is beautiful with several rolling fields, but the woods are too thick and choked with honeysuckle and multi flora rose. There are birds on adjoining farms, but in many places they'll run into fences to get to me, so...you know how that works. It happened my first hunt there. Phenomenal deer property with some real toads on and around it.

The other two places, and a couple of adjoining properties, are prime habitat and virtually undisturbed other than farming. I've never seen a raccoon there in the 10+ yrs I've hunted there for some reason? There are plenty of coyotes and hawks, but the hatches and poult survival have been exceptional. There are more birds present than when I started hunting it.

Crazy thing is all 4 of these properties are inside a 6-7 mile radius. Who knows? Im sure its no different than any other place. It has been interesting to watch...the good and the bad.
 

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Very silent for me this year. I know for a fact I will be trapping some raccoon this fall on at least 1 property I hunt if not more. I’m not just gonna complain about the poor turkey population, I’m gonna try to help it however I can.
 

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All we can do is help how ever we can as conservationists and hunters.
 

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The farms I hunt seemed normal as far as gobbling activity this year. One thing I did notice was a lot of hard gobbling jakes! Couple mornings I worked a bird that gobbled good but came in with a little stub where I was expecting a longbeard! The gobbler I killed didn’t gobble much, I believe it was partially to avoid a gang of 4 jakes that ran together. The morning I killed him he gobbled once, I didn’t try to fire things up cause I figured we’d have 4 unwanted visitors. Scratching and soft calls brought him looking. I am in full agreement with Limbhanger , raccoon populations have the greatest impact on nesting success. A raccoon finds a nest and no other factor matters, that nest is gone. I wish Ohio would take all restrictions off of killing them. Most of the **** hunters I know have went to squirrel dogs, and the few that **** hunt, seldom kill one.
 

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I've been hunting public land in preble County hard this year and since the start of season have only heard 4 gobbles this year. Last year I hunted the same areas and would hear at least 20 to 30 gobbles a day for most of the season. Any one else been experiencing this silence this year or is it just me?
You've heard more gobbles than I have and I hunt secluded private land. I almost hit a raccoon in the road the other day but it made it to the ditch . When it climbed the tree I swear it had a poult in it's mouth. My uncle still slays them every year , as soon as I find a day shift job I plan on getting back into it .
 
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The pop is defintelty down in many areas. If you were hunting and can remember the days back in late 90's early 2000 it seemed like there were birds on every point in the big hill country of SE Ohio. Now they are in pockets. on 500 acres it might hold a bird or two. My buddy and I hunt some phenominal farms (usually) and this year is has been very quiet. Maybe it's just bad luck, but when we do hear them they are just off where we are legally allowed to hunt. Back in the hay day it wasn't like this whatsoever. I am sure hoping it turns around. This will be the first year I have ate tag soup in as long as I can remember (which I did miss so that's one me, but it wasn't like I had several opportunities).
 

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The pop is defintelty down in many areas. If you were hunting and can remember the days back in late 90's early 2000 it seemed like there were birds on every point in the big hill country of SE Ohio. Now they are in pockets. on 500 acres it might hold a bird or two. My buddy and I hunt some phenominal farms (usually) and this year is has been very quiet. Maybe it's just bad luck, but when we do hear them they are just off where we are legally allowed to hunt. Back in the hay day it wasn't like this whatsoever. I am sure hoping it turns around. This will be the first year I have ate tag soup in as long as I can remember (which I did miss so that's one me, but it wasn't like I had several opportunities).
Oh I remember the late 90s-early 00s...on the best mornings your problem was deciding which of the 8-12 birds, that were gobbling in the holler, you were going after. I'm grateful I got to experience those days!
 

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Oh I remember the late 90s-early 00s...on the best mornings your problem was deciding which of the 8-12 birds, that were gobbling in the holler, you were going after. I'm grateful I got to experience those days!
savor it. I seriously wonder if those days are gone. My buddy thinks the turkeys will be the next grouse story. I hope not.
 

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I don't think that will be the case. There are a lot more conservation efforts for the wild turkey than grouse. The NWTF leads the way.
Though I do remember the grouse numbers long before the turkey numbers grew. They were thick in those same hills back then. They scared the hell out of me uncountable times...and hearing them drumming during turkey season. Of course I lived in Madison Co and remember the hoards of pheasants and quail before the blizzard in '78, too, not to mention all the cottontails! Sucks that the best of things have to end.
 
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I don't think that will be the case. There are a lot more conservation efforts for the wild turkey than grouse. The NWTF leads the way.
Though I do remember the grouse numbers long before the turkey numbers grew. They were thick in those same hills back then. They scared the hell out of me uncountable times...and hearing them drumming during turkey season. Of course I lived in Madison Co and remember the hoards of pheasants and quail before the blizzard in '78, too, not to mention all the cottontails! Sucks that the best of things have to end.
Thick in the same hills....like the turkeys were....I hope you're right
 
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