Archery Talk Forum banner

1 - 18 of 18 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,258 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Being my first year turkey hunting, I wanted some opinions on turkey size :darkbeer:!

With Whitetails we have benchmarks, 130 P&Y being a great deer, and 170 B&C being an exceptional animal.

What are these benchmarks for a turkey? Or are there any!? And if not what do you consider a "big" turkey, and what is a "great" turkey?!

For instance, I just shot my first bird yesterday! I didnt weigh him but he had a 9.5" beard, and about .75"-1" spurs, how where does this rank on the "size scale" haha. Just looking for some input as this whole turkey thing is new to me :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,086 Posts
if you shoot a bird with 1 1/4 spurs, you shot a good bird! 22-23+ lbs is a big bird too. beard wise, anything over 10+ inches.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,340 Posts
last post said what I was gonna say
 

·
Prairie Ghost
Joined
·
1,943 Posts
Any turkey with a bow is a great turkey. Congrats!!! :darkbeer:

I know I'll rub guys the wrong way with this, but for the life of me can't understand the whole scoring of turkeys. It's a bird. Can I score my mallards, canada geese, mourning doves? Just another way for guys to prove they're better hunters IMO.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,478 Posts
The only true way to judge a turkey in my opinion is the spurs. When you get one with 1 1/4 spurs or longer, you are getting into the older ones. Beards look cool but really mean nothing since a two year old will most of the time have a 9 inch plus beard. Some of the oldest turkeys I have seen taken had beards less than 8 inches. Spurs are the way to judge age.
 

·
BIG FRANK....
Joined
·
8,248 Posts
Trophy turkeys!!!

Every turkey is a trophy, it's just some turkeys are bigger than others. I'm located out in Oregon, cut my teeth turkey hunting in California 34 years ago. I killed an old bird once that was 23lbs.1inch spurs and 2inch beard,complete rounded fan. Biologist said the beard was short because of a parasite.A lot of birds i have killed, there spurs are long and rounded off.Even though they are old birds. I believe they wear them off on the rocky terrain. A mature bird has a full rounded fan.Some birds have multiple beards, i've killed 2 with 2 beards.Saw 1 bird killed with 5 beards, some with 2 spurs on 1 leg.Heard of a bird that was killed with a 16 in. beard,he had an injured leg to where he could'nt bend over an wear the beard off.Don't know how true that is ha ha?Point is everyone says it"s a 2yr.3yr.4yr. because of that size spur that's a bunch of crap. To many variables in the turkey world.That's my experience for 34yrs. an about 60 turkeys, and i'm sticking to it.:darkbeer::darkbeer::darkbeer:
 

·
BOW ONLY!
Joined
·
2,590 Posts
Any bird that scores 65 or better using the NWTF scoring system is a trophy bird.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,633 Posts
I agree with this post

if you shoot a bird with 1 1/4 spurs, you shot a good bird! 22-23+ lbs is a big bird too. beard wise, anything over 10+ inches.
For my area this is about right. However, I understand that in other areas the birds are generally smaller?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,573 Posts
The only true way to judge a turkey in my opinion is the spurs. When you get one with 1 1/4 spurs or longer, you are getting into the older ones. Beards look cool but really mean nothing since a two year old will most of the time have a 9 inch plus beard. Some of the oldest turkeys I have seen taken had beards less than 8 inches. Spurs are the way to judge age.

X2......


Since a beard can have "beard rot", can be worn off and few other things, I don't consider a beard to be the trophy.

The weight of bird doesn't mean much to me either. I've killed gooblers as small as 18 lb. and as big as 25 lb. When they came strutting in I couldn't tell you which is which.

It is cool to roll that bird over for the 1st time and see those long pointed hooks.

I love trying to kill a mature whitetail but I just love turkey hunting. It no big deal to me if it's a 2 or 5 year old bird.



.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
28,624 Posts
1 1/4 spurs = good bird.
 

·
Team 32
Joined
·
2,524 Posts
Dang, using the NWTF score, my first bird was 70.5:

19.5 lbs
1.5" spurs
10.5" beard

Do you get credit for a second beard? Mine had a second beard that was 6.5"
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
17,587 Posts
Beard length varies by region and subspecies/hybrid.
Spurs are a better measure of a "trophy bird".

I'm kind of in the same camp as the previous poster. It's a bird. Any legal turkey with a bow is a trophy to me. :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
444 Posts
Dang, using the NWTF score, my first bird was 70.5:

19.5 lbs
1.5" spurs
10.5" beard

Do you get credit for a second beard? Mine had a second beard that was 6.5"
Thats a good turkey. Congratulations!!!!!! as far as the weight of the bird goes the birds i kill early in the season go 20 plus pounds if i kill one after about mid season it will weigh less that 17.5pounds the one i killed this year with 2days left in the season had 11inch beard 1 inch spur and weighed 14.5 pounds lightest turkey i ever killed he wasnt sick he had a lot of hens he had to take care of......
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
576 Posts
Why must we turn everything into a scoring contest?

Any Tom with any method is a real trophy. Is one guys bird 'more' of a trophy because its spurs are a quarter inch longer?

Not in the Kid Vicious 'book' of scoring. :smile:

Don't hate.
 

·
Another day in paradise!
Joined
·
3,711 Posts
My brother shot a bird 2 years ago that weighed 26# and had 34mm spurs. He was told at the check station it was the biggest they had seen there. The beard was a touch over 10".
 

·
Another day in paradise!
Joined
·
3,711 Posts
Beard length varies by region and subspecies/hybrid.
Spurs are a better measure of a "trophy bird".

I'm kind of in the same camp as the previous poster. It's a bird. Any legal turkey with a bow is a trophy to me. :)
Ditto that! My first was a jake and I worked hard for him. I haven't had much time to go this year so we'll see.
 

·
Another day in paradise!
Joined
·
3,711 Posts
Best overall eastern typical!!

Hunter's Name: JAMES E. LEWIS
Home State: KY
Species: Eastern (Typical)
Harvest Date: Apr 22, 1999
Harvest Location: FRANKLIN, KY, USA

Total Score: 104.8125 #1*

Longest Beard: 13.7500" #39*

Number of Beards: 1

Longest Spur: 2.2500" #1*

Other Spur: 2.1250"

Weight: 33.5625 lbs. #5*

Method of Take: M Firearm

Calls Used: Slate, M Diaphragm
* Rank for Eastern Typical taken with a Modern Firearm for ALL locations
 
1 - 18 of 18 Posts
Top