Outdoor Journal: Bow hunting carp can be challenging, but enjoyable


Besides a turkey hunt, I like bow hunting for carp this time of the year. I have a little body of water where I can sit under a tree and shoot my bow as they swim by.

Now, before I get calls and emails of what I do with the dead fish, I may eat one or two, but the rest I give to several others who like them.

It is definitely different, but challenging. You can shoot them from now to Sept. 30, and you must have a license and a bow. You are allowed to use a compound or recurve bow, and are allowed to bow fish bodies of water where it is legal — and the bow is legal.

I was all set for the bow fishing hunts, but I had one thing that held me back — this 77-year-old man could not pull back and lock the arrow on. Well, I am sure there are guys/gals out there that also find that tough. What I am going to do is add the Barnett TTX P 380 to my hunting closet; the bow comes with a crank. That will definitely do the job.

Now I will be able to bow hunt for deer, turkeys and right now my favorite — carp in Saratoga Lake.

I am going to see if there is going to be a carp contest, and I will let you know where and when. They usually have these all-day-and-night hunts and, believe me, it is a lot of fun.


After calling for a half-hour, Steve Zahuraka of Schenectady was ready to move back to the field where he started before sunrise. One last call, and he heard the gobble at 9:45 a.m. Talking back and forth, he realized there were two in the field. One had a bright red head, and the other was displaying magnificently. Ever so cautious, scanning the area, they were seeking the nonexistent hen.

He placed the red dot on his sight over the red head so the bottom of the shot pattern would do its work and no pellets would penetrate the breast meat. The shot pattern was high and the bird too close, so the pattern never expanded and the two birds spun around and were gone. It was the first time in decades of spring turkey hunting that Steve had missed.

Live and learn.

Place the red dot on the base of the neck as the breast feathers are like Kevlar armor and seldom will a pellet ever penetrate them.

Let me know if you need help.

Earlier this spring, a turkey broke into the upstairs bedroom window of an Erie County home. According to the DEC’s report, the “turkey had busted through a glass window,” and was eventually trapped in a bathroom where it was “crashing into mirrors and walls, leaving broken glass everywhere,” until ECOs Timothy Machnica and Tom Koepf were able to use a fishing net to pin down the turkey before removing it from the home and setting it free.

After finishing an unsuccessful turkey hunt, I put the shotgun in the truck and decided to try my Heritage .22 pistol. I call it my “Matt Dillon Gunsmoke.”

It would be my first hunting trip out with it, and my main target, I hoped, would be squirrels.

While I was turkey hunting, I saw quite a few, but when I came within shooting range, they ran off — but, I guarantee, I will try it again.

Maybe I should buy a bag of peanuts.

Categories: Sports

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