Season 8 of Raised Hunting Premieres in July on the Outdoor Channel

It is hard to believe that we are set once again to release a new series of  Raised Hunting on Outdoor Channel. Eight years have flown by, and sometimes I catch myself wishing we could go back in time to relive some of those special moments. Thank God we have Raised Outdoors where we can watch any episode from any season at any time. 

As I catch myself reminiscing in the past, I try to remind myself that we can’t have memories if we don’t continue to live our lives to the fullest, and that’s all the fuel we need to push us on to the next adventure, the next season and the next hunt. 

What to Expect this Season

Season 8 is going to bring you an amazing season of beautiful landscape and imagery, dozens of wild animals at close range and a plethora of highs and lows that seem to be synonymous with hunting. More important than all that, will be the stories that unfold from the hearts of a hunting family, leaving us with those gut wrenching lessons we learn from life and from hunting. 

Season 8 will take our family and friends to places where we have never been before, to hunt animals we’d only dreamed about, until this year. We will travel to the west where the mountains seem to stretch beyond the clouds, and where the plains are so vast that even the savviest of hunters would wonder how anyone could get within bow range of anything out here.

The bugle of the bull elk will pierce the silence of another beautiful New Mexico sunrise, the roaring gobble of a turkey will sit us up a little taller in our chair, and when an antelope continues to close the distance, you will feel like you are there with us. 

Shotguns will echo in the distance as birds fall from the sky, and arrows will find their mark as they silently but humanely find their way into the exact spot we had spent hours dreaming about.  

Season Highlights

Maybe the highlight will be the elk Warren calls in, the unique whitetail that David has been seeking his entire life, or maybe it will be the second mountain lion that Karin encounters at eight yards. 

Whatever it is, it won’t be the same for any of us, each of us will find that peace, that part of Raised Hunting’s Season 8 that will hit us when and where we weren’t expecting it. It will be that moment that will stick with us and remind us that nothing lasts forever, and soon that moment will be a memory, and we will be left once again wishing for more. God willing we will be working on providing just that, another season of moments and memories. 

Raised Hunting Air times 2021 Season 8 on Outdoor Channel

Monday 3:30 p.m.

Wednesday at 12:30 a.m.

Wednesday 12:30 p.m.

Thursday 6:30 a.m.

God Bless and Good Hunting-David “Dad” Holder

David’s 2020 Spring Solo Turkey Hunt

The other morning I set out to go turkey hunting, which is pretty much the norm for us at this time of year. But it was different this time, this time I was hunting by myself (no camera man) well that’s not exactly true, I would be filming myself. Which normally you would hear me complain about, but this time was somewhat intentional.

See years ago when I first started turkey hunting, Karin and I had no money and there wasn’t much of a selection of decoys and other fancy turkey gear like vests and box call holders etc…. if you wanted something like that you made it yourself.

Well the last two weeks or so, we have noticed that our Iowa birds seemed more educated than normal with several call ins, only to have the birds hang up just out of shooting range. Not wanting the turkeys to win these battles I began thinking how can I get close to them and be able to get a good shot? What I came up with surprised me at how good I thought it could be, but I would need to test it to be sure, and only having one I couldn’t take the chance of bringing someone else with me.

Which brings me to the other mornings hunt. I arrived 45 minutes before sun up and snuck onto a ridge I hoped still held some of the turkeys that had been whooping us the last couple weeks.

With my new decoy I snuck in closer than normal having the confidence that they would not know what was up. When the first booming gobble bellowed only 60 yards in front of me I felt my pulse begin to quicken and as the woods came alive and gobbles could be heard from almost every direction, all I could think about was “how can I properly thank God for a morning like this”? So, I did what I thought was the best thing I could, I bowed my head and said “thank you”, hoped that was enough and threw out a couple soft yelps only to be cut off by several gobbles that almost shook the ground.

Not only were the birds on the ground already, but I now could see them and they obviously had seen my new invention and were headed right at me. Only a couple minutes and they are now 40 yards and closing, I am thinking the big strutter at 22 yards is close enough, but I have to find a shot through a few brushy spots. As I am concentrating on getting a shot I never saw the other toms sneaking in at 7 yards.

Even though my decoy was working perfectly it couldn’t hide the oh _ _ _ _! look on my face when they saw me moving to adjust the camera. Fortunately the decoy played such a key role they never spooked completely, they just moved out to 15 yards. Time to really test the new decoy I came to full draw and they never had a clue, now all I needed to do was pick out the best shot. I began to focus on the head of the closest tom since they had gone down hill just a bit I couldn’t get a good shot at the shiny spot. The head it is, I thought, you got this just put the pin right on his head and you got him, I squeezed the trigger and he ran off.

What the heck that shot felt awesome, but I could tell it was a clean miss. Wait a minute they only ran 80 yards and they are already gobbling again at other distant toms. I wonder if I could use this decoy to sneak in on them again?

Wanting to do the ethical thing first, I needed to be sure it had been a clean miss, so I snuck over found my arrow, licked my wounds, and moved on. It wasn’t until later that I reviewed the footage and found the little limb just in front of the red head that saved the turkeys life.

So now I am heading after them once again, and as I move across the ridge with the decoy held in front of me, as it is mounted securely on my bow I am positive they will have no idea a hunter is approaching, and I was right, but before I can get to them another tom has seen me and is running right at what he thinks is an intruding tom on his turf.

“Damn cameras” as I caught a glimpse of the tom running at me I sat down immediately and began trying to set the tripod, the tom makes it to 18 yards as I am still fiddling with getting the camera situated with only one hand.

The extra movement confuses the tom and he turns to leave, but a few yelps and he is now walking around me. At 18 yards we square off with a thicket of brush between us. I can see him strutting, feel him drumming and hear every spit as if he was spitting on me, but I can’t shoot through the brush. Eventually he walks up the hill toward the other gang of gobblers. So I follow, and then like magic there they are, I can see a bird strutting at 45 yards and the other toms walking around him. I contemplate my next move with the worst thorny thicket between me and the big gobblers I think I an stuck where I’m at.

Then I look again and there is a very faint deer trail going through the thicket, only problem is, it ain’t gonna be quiet at all. I figure I got nothing to lose and I bale off into the tangle of thorns busting my way through. As I cuss and squirm and put my hat back on for the 3rd time is when I realize these turkeys are gobbling more at what they must be able to see as an approaching tom making a ton a racquet coming through the brush. This is crazy and incredible. I now realize I have closed the distance to 25 yards, but again I only have a small opening to shoot through.

I am within bow range and this morning has been more turkey action than I can remember in years, so there’s no wonder why my heart is racing and I am frantically trying to get the camera set and find a clear lane to send an arrow down range at the big strutting tom. So here I am again, farting with the camera just about to get it fully focused on the 25 yard toms when I hear a “CLUCK”, the kind that says something is wrong hear!

You got to be kidding me, again a tom has popped out at 7 or 8 yards and has seen something with this intruding tom that doesn’t look quite right. Well this time I come to full draw and none of of the others no whats up, but the “Clucker” reminding me of the doe that blows at you repeatedly 30 yards away from your favorite deer stand is making my blood boil more and more. If you do that one more time I am shooting you!- I thought. CLUCK, whack I shot him square in his back and he only took a step or two and fell over.

The other turkeys never had a clue and took several minutes to finally work off. It wasn’t until they had worked off a 100 yards or so, that I felt I could crawl up and find what I thought was one of the big toms. To my surprise my big tom was actually a clucking Jake. But I couldn’t get the smile off my face and the thought of all the encounters and how I had been hard hunting for several hours now and how many encounters I had been in.

Hunting Afternoon Turkeys

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Hunting Afternoon Turkeys

Nothing can compare to the sound of turkeys gobbling at dawn. The anticipation of when and where they will fly down and listening to the forest awaken around you is an experience that can be described as being surreal. Not every morning is a success though and who wants to stop hunting when the morning is over?

Many hunters don’t like to hunt turkeys in the afternoon because they feel that their success ratio is better in the morning. I agree with that thought process, however we also realize that the turkeys are often up feeding and making their way back to their roosting spot in the late afternoon.

Our family has killed many birds in the afternoon including the one Karin killed in the photo, and it just happened to be an evening hunt. Here are a couple tips I have learned that will help your afternoon hunts.

1. Know the land (Feeding/Strutting and Roosting areas)

It’s imperative to know the land whenever and wherever you hunt anything, but afternoon turkey hunts make it an even more critical piece of the puzzle.

With that being said, here is what I am referring to. Knowing where your birds are roosting and where they typically spend their days can lead you to travel routes and corridors, which can lead you to places where you can set up to get a shot.

In western states this can be easily figured out because roost trees are hard to come by and it’s not uncommon to see dozens of birds roosted in one tree along a fence line or field edge. This is obviously with the exception of areas like “National Forests” but for the rest of the country finding an exact tree can be more difficult.

However, finding a general area is usually possible with a bit of pre-hunt scouting. During my scouting trips I am looking for droppings, feathers, roosting areas and feeding areas.

Keep in mind on sunny days turkeys prefer to scratch around in the hardwoods often times spending all day never leaving the timber.

On rainy days, turkeys will often be found in fields, looking for worms and other insects that have been uncovered by the rain. These rainy days can be great days for scouting by simply driving dirt roads in your area and glassing turkeys from the truck. (Caution: don’t blow calls at them just to hear them gobble or for any other reason, this is just educating turkeys).

Now, on either day the birds will start their day by flying down into their favorite strutting area and spending the first few hours strutting and breeding, but the afternoons are most often quite different with the birds not returning to this area until just before dark to fly back into the roost trees.

So, for us the key to killing afternoon turkeys is finding the feeding areas where they will spend a couple hours before heading back to the roost.

Knowing what fields your turkeys will head to before dark or where they will be heading to fly back up for the night, might be more key than the best decoy or call, because if you find that feeding area you will find turkeys doing turkey things long before dark.

One last tip on location is once you find the right field or area they are feeding in during the afternoon hours, is key in on the west side of the field or anywhere that gets shaded a few hours before dark. This is where big toms like to strut around along the edge while the hens grab dinner. The hotter it gets the more important the shade becomes in picking your set up spot, on overcast or rainy days anywhere in the field can be the right set up.

2.Change your Calling for the afternoons

Use locator calls more in the afternoon. Don’t get me wrong we use locator calls throughout the day, but they become even more important in the afternoon when you don’t know exactly where you want to set up. The reason they are so important is by using a crow or owl call you can keep from setting up like a mad man after you blew the perfect cutting sequence only to get a gobble closer than expected. Had you used a crow call and got the same response you wouldn’t have to worry about the gobbler headed your way and catching you before you’re ready. Therefore, remember that a locator call can help find birds without giving away your position.

Some of David’s favorite calls : https://woodhavencustomcalls.com/shop/the-cherry-real-hen/

https://woodhavencustomcalls.com/product-category/turkey-calls/friction-calls/purr-pot/

For more information on hunting turkeys visit? Raised Outdoors

When it comes to making the sexy sounds of seductive hen, afternoons need a little more thought. This one might be the most important tip but if your like me it’s also the most difficult. That is limit your calling. Typically turkeys aren’t as vocal in the afternoons as they are in the mornings, and over calling and pressuring the birds to respond can cause them to not respond or even work away without you ever knowing they were around. So I do most afternoons is limit my calling meaning I often never make any sounds until I hear or see turkeys first. This way I know that are up and somewhat receptive to my calling. The other is when I feel like I need to call I tone it down and call less often lot’s of times only yelping a few times every 30 minutes or longer. If they are around they usually will let you know and then you can start responding to them and increase the intensity as they dictate.

How to Locate Turkeys in the Spring

How to Locate Turkeys | Tips and Gear for Turkey Hunters

Locating turkeys is half the battle of hunting them. Some days they are plentiful, other days it seems like you can wear out a pair of boots just trying to find a feather. There are many tricks to the trade to find one of these giant birds. Cameras, glassing, calls; it is the ritual of springtime to hunt these birds and the thunder they emit keeps us coming back for more year after year. Taking the time to plan to locate birds will greatly increase your chances of success and overall enjoyment in turkey hunting this spring.

Roosted is not roasted. However, locating turkeys the evening before your morning hunt drastically increases the chances you have of closing the distance on your target gobbler. Knowing where they are on the roost the night before allows you the chance to strategize from multiple angles on how and where to make your plan of attack under the bleeding rays of first light. Locating turkeys is possible in various ways and with a variety of different calls. Provoking a mature tom to give away his position can be the difference between success and tag soup.

Shock gobbling is a common term used in turkey camps across the country. The term is used since it is an act of forcing a turkey to instinctually gobble because of a loud sound. These loud sounds can be anything from the slam of a truck door, a clap of thunder, a crow caw, a coyote howl or fox bark or most famously, an owl hoot. Shocking birds into gobbling is most well known as a pre-dawn and last light tactic when the birds are sitting on their roost. When they are sitting on the roost, gobblers tend to be more vocal since they are safe from predators and because they are trying to find the rest of the flock. Timing is everything. In the evenings wait to shock gobble turkeys until the last half hour of daylight. In the mornings, about half hour before shooting light is a perfect time to fire off a locating call.

Setting up on a good listening vantage point is the first key. Being able to audibly survey lots of ground from a place where you likely wont spook birds from their roost is where you need to start. High grounds, vistas, ridge lines and field corners within 200 yards of potential roosting trees should give you enough of a vantage point to let sound travel. In mountainous terrain, sound can be blocked by changes in the landscape. Having a circuit of listening points in hilly terrain to be able to call into individual valleys and hollows give you the chance to hear birds shock gobbling to your locating calls.

Owl Calls

When we think of locating calls to shock gobble turkeys traditionally hunters have used an owl call. An owl hoot produces the long range sound waves needed to shock a turkey into gobbling. Primos offers an easy to use owl hoot called the Shock-N Owl. This custom hardwood owl call gives you the ability to produce different pitch owl sounds through the removable barrel. Whether you are on the hunt or are scouting for birds, the Shock-N Owl is a simple part of your call pouch that should not be left at home.

If you do not have an owl call, fear not. There is a way to produce deep and long range owl sounds by just using your hands. First, hold your left hand up and flat but with no spaces in between your fingers. Second, take your right-hand cup your hand and lay your pinky along the crease where your left fingers meet the palm. Lay your fingers over the top of your right hand and bring your thumbs together to make an echo chamber. Did you ever call mourning doves as a kid? This is the same concept, but instead of using your left hand to make sound waves of a mourning dove, put your lips underneath the knuckles of your thumbs and blow directly downward in a controlled and strong breath of air. With practice, you can mimic the booming vocals of an owl and crush the distant ridge lines with sound to hopeful make a bird give away his position.

Crow Calls

In the middle of the morning or afternoon when the gobbling has fallen silent the turkey woods may be one of the loneliest places in the world. No matter how sweet you sound on those calls or how good those decoys look, sometimes the birds just don’t want to give away their position. Shock gobbling turkeys in the middle of the day is one method for locating them when you are hiking ridges. This is usually done with a crow call.

The powerful short blasts of a crow have long been known to draw a response from a wild tom. Next to your diaphragms, slate calls and shotgun, you will want to have a crow call in your vest. The Primos Power Crow is a simple crow call able to withstand the powerful blasts of breath producing the cawing sound of a soaring crow. If you know the area you are hunting well enough to understand the daily route of the birds, get out in front of where you think they might be headed, give three short blasts on your crow call and wait. If a bird does not respond quickly, keep moving as shooting hours are ticking by.

Trail Cameras

Trail cameras are most often associated with locating deer. Trail cameras are a great tool for locating turkeys to give you their average travel times through an area. The Truth Series of cameras from Primosare simple and easy to set up over a known strutting zone to help you dial in the exact times of day they are passing through. Knowledge is power when locating turkeys in the middle of the day. Cameras can also be set to time lapse mode to take reoccurring photos of large areas like fields to give you an idea if an area is being used at all. Make sure to keep the camera at a slightly lower height on the tree when you set it up in order to not be taking photos of birds over their heads.

Glassing

If calls are not working to rouse up a gobble, glassing is the next best bet for locating a turkey. A good pair of Nikon Prostaff 8×42 Binoculars are more than sufficient to cover fields and locate turkeys. However, if you are driving roads it wouldn’t hurt to pack a quality spotting scope to be able to identify birds across big fields. The Nikon Prostaff 16-48x60mm Field Scope gives you greater detail and long-range viewing capability. While there may not be anything you can do about a gobbler strutting in the middle of a field, but keeping an eye on where he re-enters the woods is a great way to plan for future hunts.

When locating a turkey’s pattern through using cameras and glassing it can be easy to make a plan for a ground blind and ambush a mature gobbler. The Double Bull family of blinds are perfect for hunting turkeys since the interiors are black and the canvas used to create the blinds have no wind flaps. These blinds are like sitting in the Taj Mahal for a morning of hunting. Just remember to have a trigger stick and the QS3 Magnum seat to stay comfortable and steady for the shot. This seat is specifically designed for the Primos family of blinds since they are the same height as the openings. The perfect seat for both bow hunting and gun hunting for turkeys.

Go Back

If the woods have fallen silent, head back to the last place you heard a turkey gobble and set up to call. Often times this is a great way to locate a turkey as they are also circling back to the last place they heard hens since they are alone in the late morning and afternoon. Sometimes the wait is short, other times it can last well into the afternoon hours. Especially late in the season when most of the hens have been bred this can be the ticket to success. However, toms are known to head back to the last place they heard a hen late in the morning and through the afternoon. Take a single hen decoy like the Primos Gobbstopper Hen and set up in a location of great visibility. Loud raspy yelps from the Hook Series of diaphragm calls can reach farther than most pot calls letting that gobbler know you are back in the area. If he responds it is likely he will be lonely and looking for love. So get down on your gun and don’t peak since he will come in hot.

Learning how to locate turkeys and locating gobblers can be maddening. You might go days at a time without hearing a bird which can drain your patience for staying in the woods. The challenge of finding a mature gobbler takes time and effort but makes touching that trigger on a sunny spring morning worth the frustration which comes with hunting turkeys.

bow hunting turkeys tips Raised Hunting

3 Things You Need When Bow Hunting Turkeys

Bow Hunting Turkeys | Turkey Gear Tips

Bow hunting turkeys adds another challenge to the often times difficult feat of harvesting a spring tom. Most hunters know the number one reason why bow hunting turkeys is so difficult?the draw. A turkey?s eyesight is its best defense, and a hunter drawing a bow back is more than enough movement to spook a bird. In the face of a challenge, a solution usually reveals itself. Bow hunters pursuing spring turkeys now use specific turkey hunting gear that makes this challenge a bit easier with a lot higher success rate. Watch the video below to see the top three things a bow hunter needs when bow hunting turkeys!

Three Things You Need When Bow Hunting Turkeys

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Turkey Hunting Gear for Bow Hunters

When bow hunting turkeys, these items are an absolute necessity! Each piece plays a critical role in the success of your hunt and without one, the other items and your hunt might render useless.

bow hunting turkey tips Raised HuntingTurkey Hunting Decoys

Most of the time, a multiple decoy setup will create the ideal turkey decoy setup to bring in toms. However, adding extra elements of realism to the setup increases the attraction to a bird that might potentially hang up out of range. The Primos B-Mobile? turkey decoy offers an aggressive reaction with the addition of movement! This paired with realistic hen decoys creates the ideal setup to bring a tom within range for a bow shot.

bow hunting turkey tips Raised HuntingTurkey Hunting Blind

Again, the hardest thing about turkey hunting with a bow is the point in the hunt where the hunter must draw back. The keen eyesight of a tom, especially with multiple birds is covering that draw up. A spacious ground blind with plenty of room and cover, combined with a black shirt, hat, and facemask will allow you to become invisible to a turkey.

Other key features to look for when searching for a blind to hunt out of would be the ground blinds function on the hunt. A quite, light, and easy to set up blind creates an ideal scenario when turkey hunting.

bow hunting turkey tips turkey call Raised HuntingTurkey Calls

Whether you favor turkey mouth calls, pot calls, or box calls, having a turkey call that you can effectively simulate a seductive hen with is perhaps the most important piece of turkey hunting gear you can have. Your turkey calling does not have to be perfect by any means, if you can at least get the correct cadence down, your turkey decoy setup should do the rest!

If you plan on walking into the turkey woods this spring with a compound bow in hand, remember to bring these three things with you. A turkey blind, turkey decoy, and turkey call all work together to optimize your chance for success when bow hunting turkeys this spring.