Youth hunters try to bring in turkeys

CorrespondentApril 10, 2013 

The turkeys ventured within earshot but out of range, then loose hounds ended any chance of bagging a gobbler. But none of that mattered.

“I was expecting to kill a turkey, but it was fun to hear the turkey gobble and all kinds of stuff,” hunter Noah Cooper, 11, of Raleigh said.

Noah hunted on private land near Louisburg on Saturday, opening day of North Carolina’s new youth wild turkey season. The season ends Friday, and the regular season runs Saturday through May 11.

“We went to several places, but the field that we went to was best,” Noah said by phone Monday night about a hunt with Bryan Perry, a family friend who is president of the N.C. National Wild Turkey Federation State Chapter.

Mike Cooper, president of the West Raleigh Baseball Association, observed his youngest son’s first hunt. Cooper has hunted deer and other species but not turkey.

“I knew that Bryan was an expert, and there was no one better to teach me and him,” Cooper said. “I think we both learned a lot.”

Perry and NWTF members throughout the state will continue to guide youngsters. Youths killed 832 turkeys during the one-day youth hunt in 2012, according to the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission.

On Saturday, “we were doing great right up until the deer dogs ran through,” Perry said. “We had a bird working. We had a bird coming up the field. I thought we were going to be able to close the deal.”

Noah hopes soon to call in a turkey with a box call that Perry gave him.

“It kind of sounds like a chalkboard when I draw on it,” Noah said. “But it’s pretty cool. I’m getting better.”

Youth hunt on film: One turkey hunt on the border of Franklin and Warren counties was filmed. On E.B. Harris’ farm, youths Jonathan Hopkins of Youngsville and Daniel Baxley of Zebulon were guided by Michael Marciniak of Louisburg and Branden Shearin of Louisburg on a hunt won in the Franklin County Chapter auction. Jeffrey Tillitt, co-owner and video producer/graphic designer for “The Rut Life,” said the video shoot was donated to NWTF. The video is at www.rutlifellc.com.

Corbett will shoot at nationals again: Rose Hill Plantation farm manager Larry Corbett of Nashville will represent the United States in the April 23-28 World English Sporting Clays Championship in San Antonio. Corbett has moved into the Super Veterans category for ages 65 and older. Last year, he won gold medals for Team USA and individually in the 55-64 age group.

Deer camp for novices: Anyone who wants to hunt deer but lacks a mentor will find a chance to learn May 4-5 when the Cape Fear River Branch of the Quality Deer Management Association and Drake Landing preserve in Fuquay-Varina conduct their interactive Deer Camp.

The cost is $125 for adults and $100 under 17 with an adult. Contact Guy or Judy Gardner at (919) 552-9449 or info@capefearriverbranchqdma.org. Learn about Drake Landing at www.huntdrakelanding.com.

Send your outdoors news and announcements to outdoors@newsobserver.com.

Boggess: boggess.teri@gmail.com

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