Turkey reaping in MI
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Hello , I'm starting a petition on turkey reaping in MI. Turkey reaping is where a hunter uses a decoy to hide behind to close the distance on a turkey or getting the attention of a turkey by simply hiding behind a decoy and moving the tail feathers. It's legal in many states. Sometimes it works and sometimes it don't but the point is it can be an effective and fun method to harvest your spring turkey especially in pressured areas when they get "call shy" and won't come to a call or worse yet when they run the other way when they hear a call. As a turkey hunting guide the last 6 years I've helped in the harvest over 50 turkeys in MI I've pretty much seen it all. Sometimes you can call them right in without a decoy and sometimes calling at them can be your worst enemy. As the rule states now there is no using a mechanical decoy which leaves a lot of grey area in the rules of being able to use a decoy to hunt behind and or move in on, sometimes even tailfeathers without a decoy is all that's needed. So is carrying a decoy to your hunting spot illegal too? Does it need to be in a carry bag? Since the method of turkey reaping in MI has become popular the last few years there's been a lot of buzz about if it's lawful or not and even some MDNR officers have said its ok while other say it isn't. There was even a write up in the March issue of MI woods n water news about the method of hunting we know as turkey reaping and it misinformed a lot of hunters. Recently though Mike Avery had a MDNR officer on his radio show to where he stated that turkey reaping is not legal so here we are back to square one. As hunters I believe we should be able to use any tactic to harvest our game that we invest so much money into the economy with, just not license fees but gear, clothes, hunting blinds, decoys etc. We as outdoorsman contribute a lot and we need to be heard. Is the method of turkey reaping dangerous? Sure it could be if you are hunting public land or if you simply can't tell the difference between a decoy and a real turkey like the yahoos in Kansas where the only known accident earlier this year occurred from turkey reaping. Overall though it is far from a dangerous technique to hunt wild turkeys but more of a plan B to harvest your spring turkey when the traditional method of calling gets to be ineffective and you have to go to the last resort which is patterning them and then sit there and wait for them like you would a deer which is the most boring way to hunt a turkey but sometimes needs to be done to have success when they get educated to calling and decoys. Stalking without a decoy can be done which I used that method to harvest my first couple turkeys before I could call them in but the terrain must be right for you to close the distance and it's such a low percentage chance. To wrap this up I'm asking for the MDNR to rewrite the rule book and say that TURKEY REAPING IS A LEGAL METHOD to hunt turkeys and we'll probably need a lot of signatures for our voices to be heard so please sign this. There's not near as many turkey hunters in MI as there is deer hunters so the chances are slim but without trying there is no chance of succeeding or failing. Thanks and keep the fun in hunting , turkey reaping is fun :)
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