First time for everything!

 

As I closed in on the roost site this morning, I couldn't see any turkeys.  I just figured they must be roosted a little lower & that is why I didn't see them.  So, I continued to sneak closer.  When I got within 80 yards or so, I still couldn't find any!  I looked all around thinking maybe they roosted on the top of the ridge or off the point instead of where I normally find them.  But there wasn't a turkey to be seen!  I even stood cupping my ears, hoping to hear one of the gobblers spitting or a turkey dropping falling in the leaves...nothing!  I pushed on hoping they were roosted lower in the hollow because of the wind last night.  I dropped below the lip of the ridge & searched the treetops with my binoculars...still nothing!  Then finally, I found one turkey!  I scanned nearby trees for other birds, but from what I could see, that was the only bird roosted in there!  So I snuck to within 20 yards of it & slowly got situated as quietly as possible.  It was about an hour before sunrise by the time I was ready.  I was definitely a little late because I had trouble finding any birds.  I hoped that it was a talkative hen, but I knew there was a good chance that it was a gobbler, being alone like that.  I couldn't believe that was the only bird in there!  As it started to break daylight, I heard a hen yelp across the hollow to the west.  It sounded far & I wondered why they weren't roosted where they have been for the last 3 weeks.  Did something spook them last night or were they starting to split up?  When I could tell there was enough camera light, I zoomed in & hit the record button.  I could tell it was a longbeard after a while.  Then I could hear a turkey gobbling from time to time across the hollow to the south.  The gobbler in front of me never made a sound & to make a long story short, he pitched down & headed north into a pasture.  I lost sight of him as he dropped into a small sway in the pasture.  I was really surprised that the flock wasn't roosted in there this time.  I'm not so sure why, but they definitely weren't!  I ended up hearing 11 total gobbles & some hens yelping in the distance.  I guess I started to take this roost site for granted, KNOWING they would always be in there.  But I was wrong!  I guess there's a first time for everything!

 

Sunrise:  7:05 a.m.

 

Temperature:  43 degrees (cloudy)

 

Wind:  Calm

 

Barometer:  28.41 & falling

 

Location:  southwest PA

 

# of gobbles heard:  11

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