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The Adventures of Barry the Mailman: Turkey Season 2024 - Fort Thompson

The Adventures of Barry the Mailman: Turkey Season 2024

Fort Thompson is a place that attracts all sorts of interesting characters, but one of our local legends is Barry the Mailman. Now, hold on a second – Barry isn't actually our mail carrier! He's a friendly face from the community who also happens to be a passionate turkey hunter with a knack for finding, and sometimes even falling for, those elusive gobblers. Today, we sat down with Barry to chat about his favorite shotgun, his unique calling strategy (it involves a little corn-based intel!), and his most memorable hunting mishap that (fortunately) ended with a delicious reward. Let's dive in and see what wisdom Barry the Mailman has to share!

Today’s Hunter Information: 

Name: Barry The Mailman

Location (State/Province): Arkansas

Years of turkey hunting experience: Long time … probably 25 years or so. 

Gear and Tactics:

What type of shotgun do you use for turkey hunting (gauge, brand, model)?
An old school Beretta 12 gauge that I’ve had so long I can’t remember it’s model.

What kind of shot size do you typically use for turkeys?
12 gauge

Do you use decoys? If so, what type(s)?
Oh yeah, I use hen decoys.

Do you use a blind or prefer to hunt open ground?
Open ground hunting.

Describe your calling strategy (mouth calls, box calls, etc.)
I usually ask where they put out the corn! Ha! 

But really, I see where they roost the night before then I mimic a hen yelp with my slate call. 

Experience and Preferences:

What time of year do you typically hunt turkeys (spring, fall)?
Spring hunting in Arkansas

Do you prefer to hunt public or private land?
Private land 

How important is bagging a turkey to you, or do you enjoy the overall experience more?
I love the overall experience. Bagging a bird is just a bonus!


What is your most memorable turkey hunting experience?
I was hunting with my buddy up near Mountain View on private land. We got the turkeys to come into shooting range, but didn’t get any.  After a long hunt, we went to the cabin to eat and take a nap. As I’m sleeping, I hear gobbling turkeys. I woke up and ran outside because the turkeys were in the pasture by the cabin. It was facing the North side of the property and the porch was absolutely covered in moss. On my way out, my feet when out from underneath me and I busted my tailbone! I swear I broke something, ha! When I finally caught my breath, there was still a bird within shooting range. 


Well, did you get him?!
I got ‘em! 


What is the biggest challenge you face when hunting turkeys?
These days, gobblers not henned up! The season starts too late, in my opinion. It’s hard to get them alone because it’s too late in the year.

What advice would you give to someone new to turkey hunting?
Be patient. Don’t give up just because you get bad results. It takes time to learn the art of turkey hunting. Be sure to listen to advice from other hunters. Especially when you’re on public land. 

Whether you're a seasoned turkey hunter or just starting out, Barry's advice is clear: patience, persistence, and a healthy dose of learning from others are key. So, the next time you see a friendly face delivering mail (or maybe sharing a few hunting stories), be sure to say hello to Barry the Mailman. You never know, you might just pick up a valuable tip or two for your next spring turkey hunt!