What is an ethical distance to shoot a turkey? What is your gun/choke/ammo capable of doing? What are your abilities? Can you hold a shotgun on a turkey's head at 40 yards, 50 yards...?
Have we raised the bar of expectations too high?
I once heard Rob Keck, then CEO of the National Wild Turkey Federation, speak at the World Still Target Shoot Championships. He stated that it was his vision to have a still target championship shoot to encourage the manufacturers of ammo, choke tubes and shotguns to improve their products.
He wanted to see the very best products produced so that ethical turkey hunters could harvest a turkey cleanly. What a great statement from a truly visionary man in the conservation and hunting field.
We all want the very best products that will allow us as hunters to take game from the field. We want to be able to know exactly what our gun/ammo/choke combination will do at what range and maybe even more importantly, WHAT IT WON'T DO.
It's our job to go to the range with the gun, choke and shotshell we intend to take to the field and pattern that gun at different ranges. We need to know the maximum effective range of our "combination of ingredients".
We owe it to the resource to maximize our skills and abilities. We need to use the best products that are available to us and that we can afford.
The shotshell makers are doing their job by producing the very best ammo that we've ever seen. It's our job to perfect our skills to take advantage of it.
Let's be thankful that we have these great new products that our ancestors could never have imagined.
Let's join ranks with shooters, hunters and all those that want to preserve our wonderful heritage of hunting, gun ownership and enjoying the great outdoors.