When it’s that time of year, it’s hard to beat the anticipation and the sounds of the woods…spring time! When you get down to it, besides the shotgun, turkey hunting is an affordable sport for most. From camo to turkey calls to turkey hunting vests, once you have the right gear you’re ready to hit the field. In this segment of Review Your Gear, we’re going to cover not only the best turkey calls in 2019, but a variety of calls. We try to cover some custom calls and also those looking for something simple like the best turkey call for a beginner.
Types of Turkey Calls
Box Turkey Call – The turkey box calls are probably the most popular turkey calls on the market today ( some would argue slate though ). While slate and mouth calls are fast becoming “kind of the same”, turkey box calls have a history behind them. From the wood used, to the design, once you get your hands on a good one it’s hard to let go. I personally have ever style, but my go to for making noise in the woods is my box call.
Slate Turkey Call ( Friction Turkey Call ) – The slate call is the call most used when they get more advanced in their turkey hunting. The main reason is the wide variety of sounds you can make from experience and a quality slate turkey call. Some also call them friction turkey calls, but it’s essentially the same thing. By holding the slate, you can push down on the surface area to make any sound you need, and also volume (depending how much pressure you use). While getting into a tutorial would be lengthy, I recommend spending some time practicing before you hit the field.
Push Turkey Call – If you want something simple, or want to get your child into turkey hunting, this may be the best option to start. While it’s a favorite of novices, but many experts would lie if they say they didn’t own one. You can make various sounds at the push of the button, from clucks to purrs.
Mouth Turkey Call – Let’s face it when you’re ready to get serious about your turkey hunting calls, you’re going to step into a diaphragm or mouth turkey call. While they do take A LOT of time to master, once you do you’ll find it could be the last turkey call you’ll ever use. The main reason I use one is when you’re working birds close it’s harder to spook them by the limited movement. Anytime you use other calls, such as a box call, you’re making movement that can scare away gobblers.
Best Turkey Calls for Spring
So with all that being said, let’s step into our favorite turkey hunting calls of 2019.
Primos Turkey Hunting Call Starter Pack
If you’re just getting into turkey hunting, and not sure what type of turkey call you’re looking for, this may be a viable option. Primos has been making turkey calls for decades. While they’re criticized at times for their mass production, the quality really ain’t bad for what you’re paying for. It comes with the 3 main types of turkey hunting calls, box, mouth, and slate. I bought one of these for my son who’s getting into turkey hunting and he really likes messing with them. Although momma thinks I’m crazy since spring time sounds like a turkey vest in my son’s room.
PROS: Very affordable, ready to hit the field out of the box.
CONS: A bit basic, once you get deep into the woods you may reach for something that has more versatility.
The Real Hen Cherry Turkey Box Call by Woodhaven
First off, I must say I’m a sucker for craftsmanship, and I really like unique wood box calls. This cherry box turkey call by Woodhaven is just downright nasty in the field. It has a very realistic sound and it’s hard to find bad things to say about this call. The Real Hen produces a wide range of calls and has a real raspy sound. It may just be the last box turkey call you’ll ever own.
PROS: Sounds fantastic, a real nice call for all ranges of hunters.
CONS: It is a bit on the expensive side, but I feel the quality is worth the price.
The Dual Threat Glass / Slate Turkey Call by Knight & Hale
If you’re looking for a great turkey call for the money, Knight & Hale has dialed in this new one. The Dual Threat is a 2-sided turkey pot call with glass on one side and slate on the other. This is nice if you want to only carry one call, instead of multiples. The glass side is very high pitched, I mean LOUD. If you’re trying to call turkeys at a long distance, this will produce the sounds that carry. The other side is a slate call for when you want to get down and dirty up close. They’re so excited about their new striker too that it’s patent pending. It’s waterproof and a design that they’re proud of. I mean really, it’s around 25 dollars…you can’t go wrong with this turkey call.
PROS: Can mimic multiple hens with a wide range of volume and sounds. Very affordable for any hunter on a budget.
CONS: Some guys snub mass produced and prefer custom…too each their own.
Hook Hunter Turkey Mouth Call by Primos
Primos put a lot of R&D into this new set of mouth turkey calls, called the Hook Hunter. I have spent a lot of time looking into this turkey call and it’s hard to find many negative reviews. It’s a set of 2 different mouth calls, each used for different sounds. Like any mouth call, it takes a lot of practice, but once mastered you can get a wide range of sounds out of these calls. They also claim each reed is hand cut for precision, which is better then a machine, in my opinion. If you’re looking for an affordable set of turkey mouth calls, then you may want to invest in this pair.
PROS: Affordable and produces excellent sounds
CONS: I struggled a bit with these, so it took a bit longer to master.
I’m not going to lie, I had a hard time picking my favorite style call of each. It basically came down to the best turkey call for the price. I’d love to hear your feedback. Feel free to chime in below, and good hunting!