Skalicky_turkey season

Hailey Hindman, age six, and her dad Jake Hindman on a turkey hunt during youth weekend. This was Hailey's first turkey.

The spring woods burst forth with new life. Birds are singing and morel mushrooms push through the leaf litter around where I sit. 

The old gobbler gobbles and is searching for me. I’ve done a good job making him think I’m a hen. He’s literally tripping over his beard as he comes in looking for love. His bronze feathers shine in the light of the early morning sun and the red, white and blue of his head stands out against the emerging spring greenery. 

I give a soft purr with my mouth call and he comes in a little closer. To show me how handsome he is, he puffs out his body and spreads his tail feathers. My heart is pounding out of my chest as I stare down the barrel of my 12 gauge and slowly move to click off the safety. 

Suddenly there’s a buzzing in my ear. What is that? The biggest gobbler I have ever seen disappears as I reach across my body to shut off the alarm clock. It was just a turkey dream. 

MOREL TIP

If you’re lucky enough to have more fresh morels than you can eat, just dehydrate them for later use. One cup of fresh morels withers to about a half cup dried.

To reconstitute, place dried morels in a bowl of warm water for 5 minutes or until soft and then drain on a towel. 

SPRING WALLEYE

When spring walleye fishing, a jig tipped with a minnow is hard to beat. The great thing about a jig or minnow approach is the versatility. 

Jig fishing in the springtime normally occurs in water between 1-15 feet. The depths are not set in stone, and can change from lake to lake, but basically, that range is a good place start.  

DID YOU KNOW?

You are about nine times more likely to die from being struck by lightning than you are to die from being bitten by a snake.  

WE ARE THEIR ROLE MODELS

We are the role models for kids. Our lifestyles and attitudes will be copied by future generations. It is up to us to us to make the difference and set the proper examples of right and wrong.

A great way to improve communication with kids is involvement in outdoor traditions like fishing, hunting, camping, hiking, and a multitude of other outdoor activities from bird watching to mushroom hunting. Outdoor activities take kids away from the distractions of everyday life and put them in touch with nature.

There are no TVs or electronic games to interfere in the great outdoors. Smartphones are also quiet, if you don’t turn them on. This creates the perfect environment for listening and talking. 

SOMETHING TO THINK ABOUT

“Parents don’t frame pictures of their kids playing video games or watching TV. They won’t make memories doing that either. Kids belong in the great outdoors.” 

—Author unknown

Larry Whiteley was born and raised in Nixa He was inducted into the National Freshwater Fishing Hall of Fame in honor of his more than 40 years of communicating the great outdoors all over the world through his outdoor articles and radio shows.

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