Digital Scouting NM Turkeys

DougP

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 9, 2016
Messages
235
Location
Lafayette, LA
Hello Rokslide,

I'm headed out to Mesa country in NM for my first Western hunt. I have a good idea of a general area, but I'm hoping for some pointers on digital scouting.

My plan for now is to drive where I can and use locator calls. When I run out of areas for the truck, walk along the tops of canyons and use locator calls or look for sign. Am I going at this right? Should I just pick some canyons and walk the bottoms? Are all canyons created equal, or is steep or gradual better? North or south slopes?
 
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DougP

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 9, 2016
Messages
235
Location
Lafayette, LA
I've already talked to biologists, game wardens and park rangers and have a good plan. I'm probably just over thinking it at this point. Hopefully I'll be posting some pictures of our success in a few weeks.
 

JPD350

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 25, 2012
Messages
482
Location
Abq NM
like always they are where they are, the biggest thing IMO is food, I keep moving and covering lots of terrain looking for fresh scrapes in areas where there are pinon, oak and of course big ponderosa roosting trees.
Another thing is the wind, it blows like a SOB! So if it is windy look for canyons that are out of the wind they also will roost right below the tops of ridges out of the wind.

Just get out and have fun, you will find them if you cover enough ground.
 

jlhois

Senior Member
Joined
May 9, 2015
Messages
374
Location
Boise
I have to get out of my truck to really hear the responses to my locations. It was just too noisy. Walked the roads and trails, even rode my mountain bike, to locate pre-sunrise and post sunset on roads.

I start fairly close to where birds were at when I set up in the morning. Then I move to the ridge tops for locator calls after I felt birds had already finished their morning festivities. The calling gets slim, but the ones that respond are more receptive than the birds surrounded by hens for the morning strut.

Not all canyons are created equal. The birds will roost in deciduous trees more often than not. They move up to flat areas to strut. This area does not have to be big. When looking for signs try to find dust bowls to determine if a Tom has been utilizing the area for strutting. Many times I find the Birds roost in the bottoms, and then move up to these areas after fly down. Many times these a very inconvenient, out of range, locations. Wide open and lots of vantage points to spot danger. Then they disappear into the thicker evergreen type timber for the rest of the day.

Also, When up on the ridge tops give some time to glassing. More often than not I am rewarded with spotting birds as well as all kinds of other critters.

Good luck and hope to see some limb hanger pictures.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 
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DougP

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 9, 2016
Messages
235
Location
Lafayette, LA
Thanks fellas. That helps a lot. I'm not afraid to wear out some shoe leather, I just figure I'd cover more ground in the truck. I have 3 days to hunt.
 

JPD350

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 25, 2012
Messages
482
Location
Abq NM
where are you going? maybe I can help shorten your search if I know the area.
 

Fitzwho

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 18, 2017
Messages
274
Location
Midland, TX
I'm in the same boat. Headed up to Unit 37 next weekend to chase turkeys and do a little "way too early" scouting for my elk tag. Maybe find some sheds, etc. I haven't been in the unit before, so just need to get a lay of the land and figure out some spots to check out later this summer.
 
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