How To: Make a Turkey Call

By | April 1, 2012
From Xplor: April/May 2012

In April and May, male turkeys gobble and show off to attract a mate. While their minds are preoccupied with finding girlfriends, gobblers can be lured in close by mimicking the sounds of a lovesick hen. Hunters use a variety of homemade or store-bought turkey calls for this. You can make your own turkey call out of recycled kitchen trash.

Gather These Supplies

  • Empty yogurt cup (Make sure it’s washed!)
  • Drinking straw
  • Scissors
  • Duct tape
  • Brown, green or black paint

Put your call together

  • Trim the straw so it’s a couple inches taller than the yogurt cup. > Tape the straw inside the yogurt cup. Leave a space about the width of your pinky between the bottom of the straw and the bottom of the cup.
  • Paint the cup with dull brown, green or black paint, or use camouflage duct tape to cover the cup as we’ve done in the picture. Turkeys are wary and have good eyesight. If a turkey spots a plastic cup shining in the sun, all you’ll see is the southbound end of a northbound bird!

Learn to talk turkey

You’ve probably heard turkeys gobble, but the sound you want to make is a yelp. To a turkey, “yelp, yelp, yelp” means “here I am, come on over.” To make this sound, hold the tip of the straw in your lips and suck in like you’re giving someone a kiss. With practice, you’ll soon be able to produce a sharp yelp.

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This Issue's Staff

David Besenger
Bonnie Chasteen
Chris Cloyd
Peg Craft
Brett Dufur
Les Fortenberry
Chris Haefke
Karen Hudson
Regina Knauer
Kevin Lanahan
Kevin Muenks
Noppadol Paothong
Marci Porter
Mark Raithel
Laura Scheuler
Matt Seek
Tim Smith
David Stonner
Nichole LeClair Terrill
Stephanie Thurber
Cliff White
Kipp Woods