Outdoor Journal: Hunt for second turkey continues

The latest on the outdoors with Ed Noonan

Since I shot my tom turkey this spring at Schroon Lake in Essex County several weeks ago, I have been working hard for number two.

It seems to have rained every day. I have called in several jakes and let them go. I am looking for beard dragger. I know, you don’t eat the beard, but I want a big one.

However, I have had some fun on these hunts. The funniest was on a windy and rainy day when I dozed for a half hour. When I opened my eyes, there were five turkeys, three of them were real jakes standing with my two decoys. Never got any answers the rest of that morning. 

Last Friday, when I received my Henry .410 Lever Action HO18 series shotgun, I didn’t waste any time testing it. At 25 yards, I put 20-plus pellets in the head and neck of a turkey target. The gun also has a full choke tube, which is perfect for turkeys. For more information, go to https://www.henryusa.com/.

This past Sunday, I decided to go deeper into the woods and set up and call. I started in at 4:15 a.m. and worked my way through a swamp and set up just before sunup setting up my two decoys about 20 yards from where I would be sitting.

Even before my first call “rain” and I was soaked in minutes. I packed up and, on the way out, I fell while crossing a swamp. The only thing that survived not getting wet was the Henry, which I had in a waterproof gun case.

Where was my rain gear? Hanging in the garage. I was wet, but not discouraged. Henry and I will continue to turkey hunt until the last day (May 31) or until we get a tom. 


I haven’t received any turkey tales this season. If you have shot a turkey, or even better, if you took a young turkey hunter who was successful, send me full name, city where you/they live, what you shot and where.

Also, if you got a good fish tale send me the info to. This past Sunday, there were at least 30 bass boats trailers in the Saratoga boat launch. Something must be biting.

My email address is listed at the bottom of the column.


NYS DEC ECO Maxwell Nicols (Essex County) received a tip about a Facebook post showing multiple turkeys killed prior to the season opener, with the subject claiming to have harvested the birds during the youth weekend.

The ECO located the photographer at his home, and he admitted to shooting three birds. When asked where the turkeys were now, they were cooking right then for dinner.

The subject had prior convictions barring him from possessing any firearms. He was charged with criminal possession of a weapon, taking turkey out of season and hunting without turkey hunting privileges. The meat was seized as evidence.

ECO Brian Canzeri received a call of individuals hunting turkey from the road in Petersburg along the Vermont border. When he stopped the vehicle, both the father and son had shot a turkey from the road, trespassed on posted property, failed to tag it and drove to Vermont to tag it and then returned to New York to continue hunting.

Nice way to teach you son to hunt.

Vermont Game Wardens were notified, and they continued the investigation. The two were charged with more than a dozen violations in both New York and Vermont; including loss of their guns.


Everyone has been waiting on news as to what is happening in Albany on the crossbow front.

Assemblywoman Carrie Woerner and State Senator Jen Metzger introduced crossbow bills. 

Although they are not full inclusion, if passed, they are a giant step forward for crossbow users. Although we have a lot of work left to get movement on this, it is believed to be a good starting point and stands a chance of moving these if we all work together.

Here is what Assemblywoman Woerner and State Senator Metzger bills want. 

  • Allow 12-16 year olds to hunt with a crossbow. It removes the prior prohibition on 12 and 13 year olds.
  • Changes crossbow to the bowhunting privilege and from the muzzleloader privilege.
  • Authorizes those 55 years old and older to use a crossbow in a special archery season (seasons to be determined by DEC).
  • Authorizes those physical unable to draw a longbow as determined by a physician to use a crossbow in a special archery season (seasons to be determined by DEC).
  • Adds crossbows and creates a special archery season (strikes special longbow season).
  • Allows youth to hunt wild small game and wild upland birds with a crossbow.
  • Changes bolt to arrow.
  • Removes the maximum peak draw weight.
  • Repeals the prohibition on the use of mechanical devise with a bow and authorization (permit) for disabled hunters to use crossbows which may be discharged only using one’s breath.
  • Authorizes DEC to adopt regulations authorizing the taking of wildlife using a crossbow and to include a summary of such regulations in the hunting and fishing syllabus.
  • Reduces the setback to discharge a crossbow to 150 feet consistent with a long bow.

They also have requested an amendment to remove the minimum 17-inch width restriction. Expect that to be introduced soon.  

I am all for these bills. Several years ago, I found out that I could not pull back my compound bow. As an avid bowhunter since 1968, beginning with a stick bow all way up to the compound bow. I never missed opening day. On Oct. 1, you would find me in a treestand somewhere. However, a few years ago, my right shoulder did not allow me to draw back and hold.

But when the crossbows came along with cranks to help me draw, I was back in the woods, but that season did not begin until Nov. 16. Why? I do not know.

Contact Ed Noonan at [email protected].

Categories: Sports

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