“It was on one of those picture perfect mornings.” said Cody Guess of Lyon County Kentucky. “Sunny, and very little wind. I killed the bird on our family farm.....”
It wasn't just any bird. It was not just any turkey harvested during a spring Kentucky turkey season. This was a turkey that may make it into the records books as being the World Record turkey.
On April 21, Guess harvested a turkey that tipped the scales at 37.6 pounds. That's close to double the size of a bird we put on our Thanksgiving table. The average weight of adult male turkeys is 17 pounds.
The bird had spurs 1 ¼ inches long making it a real tree hanger meaning that they are so big you can hang the bird from it's spurs on a tree branch. It also had a 9 ¾ inch beard.
Guess explained ,”(It) was very thick. Most seem to think it had been worn off or froze off.”
Many turkey hunters will pride themselves with getting a bird with a longer beard or getting a bird with multiple beards. The nine plus inch beard is average. (continued below)
“I got the bird that was gobbling off of the roost. And finally (I) got him to break off around 7 AM and that's when he came my way.” Guess said. “Luckily I was well hidden and was fortunate to let the turkey get to 8 yards before taking the shot.”
Turkey hunting requires camo clothing and being hidden so that the bird sees no movement. You can't take a chance of using a box or slate call to get a reaction from the bird. They have good sight and will spook and run if they see something they don't like.
Sometimes they'll be somewhat hidden themselves in high grass. Too, as they walk around, they'll have their heads and necks tucked close to their chest. Shooting into the breast normally isn't a kill shot. Head shots work. Hunters sometimes will give one final yelp of a hen to get the tom to stretch his neck out and look around to see calling hen. This gives the hunter the perfect shot.
What kind of call does Guess use? “I was using Dead End game call's Batwing 3 diaphragm call.” This allowed him to have his hands free to hold his gun, aim and take the shot without scaring the bird.
Guess submitted the information on his monster turkey to the National Wild Turkey Federation and is awaiting to hear if his bird is the world's largest turkey ever taken. Current records with the NWTF show that the largest turkey harvested on record is 37.1 pounds.
Guess has been hunting since he was 3 years old and would hunt with his mother. He harvested his first turkey at age 5. He's an avid hunter now and says he'll hunt just about anything possible.
“If its edible and legal, we will try it.”
Outside of hunting season Guess still uses a bow. He's also into bowfishing and is a member of the Bottomlands Bowfishing team.
Lyon County is located at the north end of Kentucky Lake and Lake Barkley with Eddyville being the county seat.
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