If you care about results, money just doesn't matter much when it comes to turkey calls.
Turkey hunting is one of the most addictive styles of hunting that exists in North America. Once those gobblers get in your blood, there is just no turning back. Turkey hunters invest a ton of money and time into attempting to bag a bird every year and if the turkey calls they choose don't live up to the price, the hunt is over before it even begins.
The following list of turkey calls are what I consider to be must-own calls in your backpack. By no means do you have to have them all, but at least one should get some serious consideration before you head out turkey hunting when the season is on.
1. The Strut Buster
These calls are handmade by Steve Reeves, owner of Supreme Turkey Calls. According to some, Reeves is known as the Michelangelo of turkey calls. The Strut Buster is one of Supreme Turkey Calls top sellers year after year. This call is high-pitched and raspy, created out of a Purpleheart body with a crystal surface and slate back. You can find this call here for $90.
2. Wicked Series Friction Call
This whole series of call is made by Zink Calls. What makes these calls truly unique is the core of the design. The Brazilian cherry pan of the call has been impregnated with acrylics, turning the call weatherproof. As opposed to some other friction calls out there, this call has a built-in sweet spot and a rubber grip ring. Get your call here for $80.
3. Tucks Cherry Long Box Call
Tucks Game Calls have been featured in national magazines, as well as television shows, for good reason. These calls are American classics and sound amazing right out of the box. Tucks cherry long box call has a finish that only gets better with age and the cherry finish darkens with exposure to sunlight. You can find them here for $79.00.
4. The Hook Up
Primos is famous for their game calls. The Hook Up may have taken their fame to a new level by creating a box call that is incredibly innovative and easy to use. Instead of a traditional screw, the Hook Up uses a magnet that holds the paddle at the perfect angle to make a variety of calls. This call can also produce very life-like gobbles as well. Find this call here for $42.95.
5. The Game Changer with Corn Dog Striker
Beaver Creek Game Calls make some of the best turkey calls on the market, hands down. Every single call that Beaver Creek puts out is created and hand-tuned by Patrick Urckfitz, the owner of the company. These calls are in high demand by turkey hunters who know quality when they hear it and the Game Changer is quality without question. If you want one of these calls, you better e-mail Patrick and get on the waiting list. Currently they are sold out. You can find these calls, along with multiple other calls at The Game Changer. It is currently listed at $29.99.
6. Big Owl
What turkey call list would be complete without a dedicated locator call? The Big Owl by Bradley Custom Calls is one step ahead of the pack when it comes to shocking mature toms into giving away their locations. This call can also be used at high or low volumes depending on how aggressive you want to be when trying to shock gobble. Check them out here for $29.95.
7. Split V 3 Reed Call
Hendershot Game Calls are all designed and created by Shane Hendershot, a multiple turkey calling national champion, and these calls sound good. The Triple V is a classic style that many turkey hunters come back to again and again. When it comes to a reed call, don't trust the variety packs that you can find at big-box retailers. Trust a company that has a turkey calling world champion creating each and every one. Find them here for $9.99.
8. Natural Born Killer
This simple reed call is a unique design created by calling champion David Halloran. This call has prophylactic reeds as well as yellow and black latex that create the bat wing cut. You can expect clear front end yelps with an awesome raspy finish. Each call is completely handmade and rival any of the best calls in the country. Found here for $8.00 each.
If this list is any indication, not all turkey calls are equal. Choosing wisely when it comes to the best possible turkey calls will fill your tags a little more quickly than others. Going with calls that everyone else has because they might be more popular, will only get you so far. The extra step is often times the difference between walking out with a bird on your should or walking out empty-handed.
Good luck this turkey season and hopefully one of these calls will help you take down a tom this spring.