Types of the Calls
Generally, it requires two hands to make a sound. Nevertheless, some can be made with one hand. Usually, it’s a wooden rectangular, hollow box with arched sides and is attached to the top paddle. To produce sounds, you need to scrape the paddle against slightly arched sides. Depending on the angle, you can produce yelps, clucks, gobbles, etc. For example, lightly rubbing and stroking of the paddle across the lip, leads to yelping.
Keep in mind that the sound quality is highly dependent on the shape of the box’s sides. Another disadvantage is that wooden models aren’t suitable for rainy weather. The moisture destroys the sound. It’s better to look for a waterproof alternative.
It allows you to provide realistic yelp, cackle, purr, and cut. This call is similar to a box one. The difference is that it creates vibrations by pushing/pulling the striker plate. All you need to do is rhythmically push or tap the button to provide different sounds. For instance, slow but firm push until the rod vibrates leads to purring.
An easy-to-use with one hand, the push-pull call produces a limited amount of sounds. Another disadvantage is moisture sensitivity: even a small rain is able to silence the call.
Pot (Slate) Call
It includes the base of the call and the striker. The slate is usually made of the slate while the striker is plastic. Unlike the other calls, this one is a bit difficult to operate and takes some time to learn how to use it correctly.
Usage difficulty is compensated for by a wide variety of sounds when mastered. To provide sound, pressure the pot with the striker. Experiment with the angles, rhythm, and amount of pressure for different sounds. Unlike others, this call isn’t afraid of wet weather. It requires both hands to operate.
Diagraph or Mouth Call
It’s a small, U-shaped tool with latex or rubber reeds. They vibrate because of the forced air that creates sound. Lightweight and waterproof calls are hands-free, allowing you to aim and call at the same time.
It is hard to master. Although a basic sound is created by deep blowing through the call, you need to work the jaw up and down to experiment with vibrations.
An electronic device that stores recorded sounds. A modern easy-to-use tool that takes up just one hand. There are different models: basic tools with pre-recorded sounds, or digital devices where you can upload any recording. A mere button push makes it work.
The main disadvantage is legislation: it’s prohibited in some states. Also, many hunters consider such calls to be unfair hunting practices.
Things to Consider Before Buying
- Learning Curve. If you are a beginner, it’s better to use a simple model – a friction turkey call. It includes tools like push/pull, pot, or box calls. They don’t require much practice to master several sounds. An electronic call is a care-free option. However, check if it’s allowed in your state.
- Season. Adjust the call choice to the season. It must be able to produce the necessary vibrations. For example, in spring – the breeding season – male turkeys can be lured out by hen calls. During the fall, they are pretending to be a gobbler yelps. For that, produce a coarse cluck and three slow-paced yelps after.
- Time of Day. If you prefer to hunt in the evening, choose the turkey call that will produce clucks, purrs, and soft yelps. For that, a pot call is an excellent solution. Increase the volume of the yelps at dawn, to attract a male in the spring. A powerful box call will facilitate the process.
- Type of calling. Each call pattern has a different purpose. They can excite, make asleep, or disclose the location of the bird. For example, putting is a primary alert of danger. It’s better used when you are ready to shoot as the tom will suddenly stop and go out of strut.
Usage of Turkey Calls
Before starting the hunt, check whether your call package is full. Some models require additional equipment to perform well. This includes the calls with the striker, which needs chalking. You need to chalk the bottom of the box to produce sharp natural sounds.
Different sounds imply a particular hunting approach. You need to adjust your choice according to your style. Go for turkey fanning or reaping with a mouth call if you prefer to go head to head with a turkey.
Don’t abandon two-hands calls when you are hunting from the ground or a blind. You can lure out a target by gradually increasing the sound of yelping. Also, pay attention to the risk of poor sound. Wooden constructions like box or push/pull will perform poorly in wet weather.
The calls can be operated with one hand, two hands, or with the mouth only. The easy-to-use push/pull or electronic devices require minimal movement. It helps to keep your place discreet. The best alternative in terms of physical activity is diaphragm calls. It’s operated entirely hands-free.
What Turkey Call Should Beginner’s Go for?
A beginner should choose an easy-to-use turkey call that will not restrict his movements significantly. A pull/push is an excellent solution. It’s easy to master and doesn’t require any specific skills. As it takes up one hand only, the device is a convenient option for emerging hunters. It won’t easily give away the location due to minimum physical activity.
Apart from that, it doesn’t take much time to master basic sounds like yelp, purr, cut, etc. They differ according to the rhythm and strength of the pushing. The construction is able to produce strong and natural sounds.
When Should I Change a Mouth Call?
Basically, an average period of mouth call usage time is two seasons. However, the period is highly influenced by storage conditions. It’s possible to prolong the life cycle for up to three to four seasons. It can be achieved by following the storage standards. After three to four seasons, the latex can get severely damaged; therefore, the tool will lose its efficiency in producing the sounds.
Wrong storage leads to bacteria emergence. As it’s put directly in the mouth, bacteria existence may cause diseases. In this case, it’s better to get exposed out of it immediately.
How to Clean a Turkey Mouth Call?
A turkey mouth call must be cleaned directly after the usage. Rinse the mouthpiece with clean water. Mouthwash is another decent alternative. You may even let it soak for a couple of minutes in the liquid.
After that, carefully semi-dry the tool with a paper towel. Insert a flat toothpick tip between the reed underneath and top. Leave it like that until the call is absolutely dry. Note: keep it away from the sun. Gently remove the toothpick after. Put it in a well-protected case to prevent exposure to bacteria.
How to Prolong a Turkey Mouth Call Lifecycle?
In order to prolong a turkey mouth call lifecycle, it’s vital to store the tool in a dark, cold place. The best alternative is a freezer. However, it’s possible to keep it in a cold basement. A particular case is essential for correct storage. It’s better if the container has some ventilation.
It’s advisable to put spacers between the reed and top for extra ventilation. Keep in mind to be gentle while washing, cleaning, etc. the diaphragm calls so as not to damage any material.
What Are the Basic Rules of Looking after a Diaphragm Call?
A hunter mustn’t leave a mouth call in a hot place or the sun for a long time. It leads to overall damage to the tool itself. Latex-related problems like a ripple may appear. This leads to poor sound. To fix it, try to bend the metal frame.
In order to avoid getting sick, regularly sanitize the mouth call. Soak it for 10-15 minutes in a liquid that contains 50/50 of water and mouthwash accordingly. Rinse it with water after and dry. Don’t put the tool in the case before it’s dried up to prevent mold and an unpleasant smell.
Nowadays, there are plenty of the turkey calls on the market. Whether you are a professional hunter or a newcomer, you should choose such gear very carefully. Use our descriptions of the items and compare them to select the one suitable call for you and your needs.