When you decide to go turkey hunting, it’s a sure thing you also need to buy some good turkey decoy. But, wait, what makes a good turkey decoy? Does it matter where you placed it? Is it important how detailed the turkey decoy is, or is placement more important?
A specific decoy body posture might be important and birds might act towards a Jake or a gobbler decoy in a different way. As helpful a turkey decoy might be, it could ruin a good hunt just as well if you make some small mistakes…
How turkey decoys work
It’s important to know something about the hen and the gobbler before you go ahead and place your turkey decoy.
For instance, when a tom gobbles, he practically announces to all the hens around that he is there are ready to mate. So, no matter how great the turkey decoy is, there’s always the risk that a bird would lock up on a decoy and wait for her to come to him.
So you need to look carefully to the body posture of the turkey decoy. A head up means alert position which isn’t that bad as there’s always a bird that looks up for the others.
The relaxed head position bird is something to look for. As it’s not alert, there should be no reason for the gobbler to think something is wrong. This position is also related though to a walking bird and you can’t have the movement involved in this position as it’s not natural at all. It’s a good thing to have it and you may use it in high grass.
When a turkey decoy has the head down, it’s the feeding position. This is a decoy especially for late season when hens aren’t breeding as much and get ready for nesting. You may also use it for the shy gobblers as a feeding bird isn’t very vocal.
Of course you may take a combination of turkey decoys and a Jake decoy may make it all a little funnier.
Keep in mind that you might not be the only hunter out in the field so place yourself safely, away from the decoy and always pay attention when transporting a decoy resembling a gobbler or Jake.
Nowadays the realism of the new decoys is amazing as they are not lifelike but also longer lasting. The new turkey decoys are made of plastics so you may use it year after year, even though they take abuse of a gobbler fighting with them. So find the right turkey decoy that fits not only your likings but also your wallet too.
Some steps matter also
No matter how great your turkey decoy might be, there are some steps you need to follow in order to be successful.
You need to be sure that your turkey decoy is not a turnoff and adjust the decoy to the season. In the early season, the birds are looking to secure their status so a strutting tom isn’t the best choice.
Don’t hide your decoy, but do hide yourself from the scene. You want the turkeys not to see you, but only the turkey decoy.
It’s better to set your decoy system close to you, at maximum 35 yards and go closer when you use a bow.
Keep in mind to secure the decoys from wind and from other hunters or predators also. Turkey decoys are so realistic that you can’t tell the difference from a live turkey from far! Animal or human, as well.
Stay safe and seek not only to protect yourself from other hunters but also to protect the other hunters.
Top 5 Turkey Decoy Reviews
Even though it’s made of plastic, the Primos B-Mobile Decoy is flexible and long lasting at the same time and it’s efficient for your hunting experience. It gets the job done, but it can’t shoot for you. Here’s our list of pros:
- There are only high quality Primo materials used on the decoy
- The decoy is 100% designed and tested for the toughest situations and environments
- The decoy may be used by amateurs and professional hunters just as well
- The decoy is a full-strut gobbler decoy
- The decoy is compact and foldable for an easier carrying
- The Primos B-Mobile simply pops into place after being rolled-up
- The decoy has a fan holder for attaching a real fan
- The setup is very easy to do
- There is a metal stake for the decoy, giving it stability
- You may carry around the decoy in the carrying bag that comes along
- You also get an instructional DVD with the decoy
- The decoy is very well thought out
When it comes to the parts we don’t like that much, there are some. These cons aren’t deal breakers, though:
- The decoy is a bit large
- The plastic leaves a bulky feeling
All in all, the decoy is efficient and realistic but…it’s only one piece of the puzzle of your success when turkey hunting.
If you’re a fan of inflatable decoys, the AvianX Breeder Turkey Decoy might surprise you with its realistic appearance and durability. Here’s the list of pros on the Avian XBreeder:
- The decoy is a breeder hen in receptive posture
- The decoy has one piece folding stake that gives movement without spinning
- It’s very easy to setup and take down the decoy
- The rubber is very quiet
- The decoy is lightweight
- The Avian XBreeder comes with a carrying bag which makes it very easy to carry around
- The decoy is made of Dura-Rubber
- The shell of the decoy is durable and very thick
- The decoy is long lasting and for heavy duty use
- The Avian XBreeder is very detailed and has a lifelike appearance
When it comes to the cons, there are few to mention:
- Some complained about some air leaking
- The decoy might need constant air maintenance
- Some consider the decoy to be a bit pricey
But, for the quality and realistic feel, the AvianX Breeder is surely a good “catch” for your hunt.
You also need a Jake Quarter Strut for your turkey hunt so the AvianX Jake Quarter Strut Decoy, Camo seems to be a good option. Here are the pros:
- The decoy displays non-aggressive pose to bring in dominate and subdominant birds
- The AvianX Jake Quarter has one piece folding stake that gives movement without spinning
- The decoy comes with a carry bag, stake and turkey hunting DVD
- The decoy has an impressive realistic appearance
- The AvianX Jake Quarter is a collapsible decoy
- The decoy is very detailed and has no-flake paint
- The decoy is made of Dura-Rubber
- You may use the decoy for long time as it’s durable and doesn’t crease or dent
- It’s easy to setup and take down the decoy
- The decoy is very efficient, according to some
- The AvianX Jake Quarter is very sturdy
As for the parts we like less on the decoy, here they are:
- Some observed some air leak problems
- The decoy isn’t low priced
All in all, the decoy is very efficient and even the most inexperienced hunters appreciated its efficiency out in the field.
An efficient Strut decoy is the Flambeau Turkey Master Series King Strut Decoy. Here are the pros on our part:
- There are high quality materials used on the decoy
- The Flambeau Turkey is a collapsible foam decoy
- The decoy is lightweight and easy to carry around
- It comes with a carry bag
- The decoy come with photo realistic cloth tail fan, synthetic beard, stake, blaze orange carry bag and real tail fan holder
- The unique two-piece folding stake has metal tip that pierces even hard ground and gives movement in breeze
- The tail fan holder lets you use a cured or “green” tail
- You also get a 20-minute instructional DVD
- The decoy has crush-proof PillarLock system so it can take heavy use
- The latches are sturdy
- The head looks pretty good
- The decoy is really efficient
As for the parts we are not very fond of, here they are:
- The decoy doesn’t look durable
- The decoy has some flat spots
Efficient and quite reliable, the decoy might be an accessory to consider the next season.
For a better success on your turkey hunting, a combo pack might be the final touch. The Avian-X LCD Rio Grande Combo Pack – Lookout Hen Jake Turkey Decoy has many good things related to it, so here are the pros:
- The decoy is lifelike collapsible, especially designed for Rio Grande turkey country
- The decoy is very realistic
- The LCD Jake Quarter Strut and LCD Lookout Hen have a realistic Rio Grande look
- The LCD Lookout Hen has a dominant pose with an upright head and higher profile to draw gobblers ready for courtship and bring in other hens
- The LCD Jake Quarter displays a sub-dominant pose to bring any big gobbler to your spread
- The decoys are made of Dura-Rubber
- There is no-flake paint scheme on the decoys
- The decoys fold and fit easily into a vest
- The decoys don’t dent or crease from folding
- Each decoy comes with a carry bag so it’s easy to carry them around
- Each decoy comes with a folding motion stake that creates life-like motion in the easiest wind
Along with the good things, come some minor aspects that sure count as cons:
- You need to inflate the decoys so you need some good lungs for it
- There’s a slight of bulkiness to the decoys
All in all, the combo pack is efficient and realistic and might serve you good out in the field.