• 50°

Local turkey hunters reflect on success this year

NATCHEZ — Natchez resident Byron Garrity has a saying about turkey hunting.

“They say all fisherman are liars, or all liars fish,” Garrity said. “The same is true for turkey hunters. No one will tell you what’s going on during the season, how many they took or how many they heard gobbling until the season’s over.”

But turkey season ended May 2 and the gobble gabbing has begun.

“This year, I took my limit of three, but I didn’t hear or see near as many gobblers as usual,” he said. “I just don’t think they were as vocal as they’ve been in years past.

“I saw several gobblers still in the tree at 8:30 in the morning, and that’s highly unusual. I think it has to do with the number of predators. I saw more coyotes and foxes when I was hunting than usual. They’re not going to gobble as much because they don’t want to call predators to them.”

Garrity also said hunters around the area thought hunting was more difficult this season due to it being colder for a longer stretch of time. However, he said he thinks something other than the temperature has a significant effect on a turkey’s activity.

“I think the atmospheric pressure has an effect on them. When it’s between 298.8 and 299.9, that’s when they tend to gobble more,” Garrity said.

“I don’t know why it’s that way, but I think it has something to do with their ability to sense pressure. They have a gland at the base of their skull, and I think that gland allows them to sense that change in pressure. That’s just a personal theory.”

And Garrity’s not the only turkey hunter who looks at atmospheric pressure. Natchez resident Danny Weeks said he also notices a difference in turkey activity depending on the atmosphere.

“When it’s overcast skies, they don’t seem to gobble as much,” Weeks said. “With a blue bird day and the sun shining, the birds will gobble their heads off, regardless of (the temperature).”

Even though it might have taken longer for some people this year, Weeks said most of his turkey hunting friends took their limit.

“Most people I’ve spoken to, people who turkey hunt a lot like I do, they said they were done taking three before the season was over,” Weeks said.

Even a local rookie took his limit this season. Blaine Lee picked up turkey hunting for the first time this season, and now there’s no going back, he said.

“My cousin Greg Cotten from Baton Rouge brought me opening day to the place we hunt in Meadville,” Lee said. “He called one from behind me, and it walked right by me to our decoy, strutting and gobbling, and I shot him.

Lee took his final two turkeys the final week of the season, when he took vacation time from work to dedicate the time to turkey hunting.

“From that first bird forward, I was up every morning at 3:30 leaving for the woods,” he said. “Next spring, I plan on using all my vacation days for turkey season.”

And he’ll have to live with the repercussions, he added.

“My fiancé was upset, because she wanted me to use some of those days so we could get married. I said, ‘Baby, we’re just going to have to work that out.’”

News

Trash collection one day behind schedule for Thanksgiving

News

Ferriday man sentenced to life for 2019 slaying of Natchez schoolteacher

Business

Mayor: Silver Street raising and dock plans moving forward

News

Tree lighting event is Saturday in Natchez

News

Former Natchez Alderman David Massey dies at 72

News

Stewpot ready to serve needy on Thanksgiving

News

Saturday high-speed chase began in Louisiana, ended with crash in Natchez

News

No print edition of The Democrat on Friday

News

Natchez school board cancels bid opening for new high school due to COVID-19

News

5 Miss-Lou residents die of COVID-19 over weekend

News

Remains found in Natchez neighborhood

News

The Dart: Natchez resident loves music

News

Coroner: A Natchez woman dies with COVID-19 Sunday

DEVELOPING NEWS

Suspect in high-speed vehicle chase arrested in Natchez

BREAKING NEWS

Natchez Police investigating Saturday shooting that injured two people

News

Coroner: Two Ferriday men died with COVID-19 Saturday at Merit Health Natchez

News

Natchez freedmen and women largely funded Emancipation Monument in Washington, D.C.

News

Adams County coroner loses 25-year-old granddaughter to COVID-19, urges compliance with health guidelines

News

35-year-old Ferriday resident dies with COVID-19 as cases, hospitalizations continue rising

News

‘American Pickers’ star Mike Wolfe picks Natchez

News

COVID-19 numbers spike locally just before holidays

News

Norm Yvon resigns as lead administrator of Cathedral School

BREAKING NEWS

ACCS falls to Leake Academy in MAIS Class 5A state championship

News

Second suspect arrested in Tuesday armed robbery