Taking pictures at a turkey with shotgun couldn’t be extra easy: Put the bead on that glowing pink head and neck and pull the set off. The place to shoot a turkey with bow, nonetheless, is extra difficult. You possibly can shoot on the head and neck or on the heart-and-lung important space, which is in regards to the dimension of a softball and requires completely different aiming factors relying on what angle the gobbler is going through.

However don’t fear. I’ve chased turkeys all throughout the nation for 25 years with archery deal with and have dialed within the perfect aiming factors for clear kills. Under is a full breakdown of the place to shoot a turkey with bow, every spot ranked from my favourite to my least advisable. All will kill, however some are higher than others.

1. The place to Shoot a Turkey With a Bow: Head-On

For this shot, purpose dead-center, simply above the beard. John Hafner Pictures

That is my favourite shot of all as a result of it’s one hundred pc deadly, and the beard offers you a exact aiming level whether or not the hen is in full strut or not. It’s a typical angle within the area, too. Typically a tom will strategy a gobbler decoy from behind and stroll up alongside the imposter, supplying you with an ideal head-on shot. Additionally, 90 % of your pictures will likely be frontal if you happen to use a bow-mounted decoy. 

Whereas at full draw, discover the beard and settle your pin about an inch above it. In the event you’re somewhat excessive, you hit the neck, which is deadly; if you happen to’re somewhat low, you chop via the beard and drive the arrow via the vitals.

2. The place to Shoot a Turkey With a Bow: Broadside

illustration showing the dark triangle of a turkey
Discover the “darkish triangle” (proven at proper) and purpose simply an inch or so behind it on a broadside strutter. John Hafner Pictures

If the turkey is in strut, which is frequent if he’s attempting to intimidate an imposter, discover the darkish triangle. That is the place the darkish line of feathers on the facet or neck and chest meets the purpose fashioned by the higher and decrease wing. Discover this triangle, come again on the physique an inch, and the hen will die in seconds. Some bowhunters prefer to purpose proper on the darkish triangle, whereas I purpose and inch again, however both is lethal.

If the hen is just not strutting, purpose in step with the legs somewhat greater than midway up the physique. Search for the darkish bar of feathers that separates the higher and decrease wing and shoot on the entrance portion of it.

3. The place to Shoot a Turkey With a Bow: Quartering To

photo of where to shoot a turkey with a bow
With quartering-to tom, run your pin up the far leg till it’s even with the bottom of the beard and shoot. John Hafner Pictures

I might have simply be ranked this shot primary, however I do know too many curmudgeons that will get their shorts in a bunch if. Right here’s what I do know from many years of doing this: If I get a quartering-to shot, I’m capturing.

With a strutter, put the arrow into the vanguard of the darkish triangle described within the Broadside part above. If the hen is just not in strut, discover the offside leg, and raise your pin straight up till it’s even with or barely above the bottom of the beard. In the event you do your half, that gobble is nearly as good as tagged and should drop in his tracks. 

4. The place to Shoot a Turkey With a Bow: Head/Neck

photo of where to shoot a turkey with a bow
In the event you get a face-on head shot, purpose somewhat low on the neck, so your arrow can punch via and hit vitals as a backup. John Hafner Pictures

Don’t draw back from this shot, and don’t fear if you happen to don’t have a decapitating-style broadhead on the tip of your arrow. Sure, decapitating broadheads like a Magnus Bullhead provide you with extra room for error due to their big blades, they usually kill like loopy—however chopping off a turkey’s head isn’t my fashion. Plus, if I must take somewhat longer shot, I might slightly have an ordinary 2-inch lower expandable broadhead on the tip of my arrow, which is able to fly a lot better. 

That is an all-or-nothing shot, which is an effective factor. Hit, and it’s sport over. Miss, and also you largely seemingly miss the hen altogether, with no hurt finished. I want the hen to be in full strut for a head shot, as a result of that method, the top rests towards the darkish black again feathers, supplying you with clear goal. I don’t thoughts a head/neck shot if the hen is just not in strut; however for this, I just like the shot distance to be 10 yards or much less. 

5. The place to Shoot a Turkey With a Bow: Dealing with Away

photo of where to shoot a turkey with a bow
The outdated “Texas coronary heart shot” is deadly on a gobbler. Simply take your time. John Hafner Pictures

Some bowhunters want this shot to all of the others, and it’s certainly very deadly. The one purpose it comes final on my record is as a result of there’s an inclination to hurry this shot. When a hen is strolling away, you may get the sense that your alternative is disappearing, and that it’s important to shoot quick.

That mentioned, if you happen to resolve the shot is for you, shoot on the base of the fan, on the vent. Just like the “Texas coronary heart shot” on deer, your projectile will drive via the hen and attain the vitals for a fast kill. 

Finest Setup for Bow Pictures at Turkeys

The very best setup for getting a deadly shot at a tom turkey is with a floor blind mixed with extremely lifelike decoys, like a Avian X or DSD, fitted with a pure tail fan within the case of a strutter. You definitely can pull off a profitable bowhunt from a pure blind, particularly if you happen to sit in deep shade and have nice blocking cowl from the route you assume turkeys will come. That mentioned, nothing hides you higher than a pop-up floor blind. And lifelike decoys will focus all of a tom’s consideration on it’s “rival” or potential “mate” and take it away from you, particularly whilst you draw. A tom that’s busy beating up a faux jake or tom, or mounting a hen decoy, isn’t more likely to see you draw.

Watch for Your Shot

Be affected person when a tom is available in. Now that you realize precisely the place to shoot a turkey with a bow, let your hen get shut and watch for the shot you need. I lot of hunters, understandably, get very antsy when there’s a tom within the decoys. It’s fairly thrilling stuff, particularly if there are a number of longbeards in entrance of you. However do your greatest to remain calm. So long as the hen or birds should not clearly spooky, there will likely be loads of time to observe them strut and spin and gobble—and ultimately provide the good shot.

Finest Broadhead Alternative for Bowhunting Turkeys

photo of turkey broadhead
The writer prefers a superb expandable head with a 2-inch slicing diameter, like this one by SEVR. Jace Bauserman

Too many bowhunters shoot fixed-blade broadheads at turkeys. Doing so is an absolute no, in my view. A hard and fast blade reduces your slicing diameter, supplying you with much less error margin, and also you’re not capturing a heavy-boned bull elk, so that you don’t want a ton of penetration. Put a Titanium SEVR 2.0 or a Rage Hypodermic NC on the tip of your arrow and kill birds stone lifeless. Bowhunting turkeys is a blast, and you’ll hit the woods earlier than the shotgunners in lots of states. Observe this shot-placement information, and also you’ll be filling out an archery turkey tag earlier than you realize it.

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