From Xplor for Kids
April 2012 Issue

How To: Make a Turkey Call

Publish Date

Apr 01, 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.

Also in this issue

You Discover

April and May are Goldilocks months—not too hot nor too cold. Wildflowers pop up, songbirds migrate, and fish finally find their appetites. Here are just a few things to discover.

Predator vs. Prey: Bass vs. Crayfish

The struggle to survive isn't always a fair fight. Here's what separates nature's winners from its losers.

Giants of the Night

The moth flutters silently, mysteriously through the night. Her wings are impossibly large and glow green like an emerald in pale moonlight. She is a luna moth, named for the moon, for the night, and on this, her last evening on Earth, she’s searching for a place to lay her eggs.

The Adventures of Bionic Bird and Robo-Deer

Most hunters obey the law. When they don’t, conservation agents are pros at catching them. But to bust some poachers, conservation agents need a little help. That’s where we come in.

Wild Jobs: Collared-Lizard Researcher Amy Conley

Collared-lizard researcher Amy Conley snares skittish reptiles with a lasso of dental floss.

Strange But True

Your guide to all the unusual, unique, and unbelievable stuff that goes on in nature.

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

Stay in Touch with MDC

Stay in Touch with MDC news, newsletters, events, and manage your subscription

Sign up