Where to Aim the Bird When Bow Hunting 

When you’re bow hunting, you’ll often have to make decisions about where to aim the bird. This can be a difficult task, but it’s necessary for accurate shooting. 

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Besides knowing where to place the arrow on the target, you also need to consider what will happen once you shoot. This can vary greatly depending on the conditions. 

Hunting game seldom stays on level ground, and it’s common for critters to move on hills or in ravines. These factors can cause your shots to be off-center or even miss entirely. 

As a result, you’ll need to adjust your aiming point to compensate for the varying heights of the game. This is something that can take some practice to get right, but it’s important to do so. 

Elevated Practice: This is a great way to get a feel for your shots when you’re bow hunting, especially when you’re in a tree stand or in the backcountry. Try taking a shot from your balcony or scaffolding in your backyard, and see how it affects your accuracy. 

Where to Aim Turkey When Broadside: When a turkey is broadside, you want to take advantage of its breast meat, so aim slightly back where its wing joint connects to its body. This will allow you to keep as much of his breast meat as possible. 

Another consideration when aiming a turkey broadside is where his vitals are located. This can vary based on whether he’s in a strutting or non-strutting position, but it’s usually best to aim just below his last wing joint when he’s strutting. 

The experts at Mathews Archery recommend “drawing” two intersecting lines when aiming at a gobbler quartering toward you. The intersection of these lines puts a bull’s eye on the bird’s vitals, and an arrow hitting that spot devastates a turkey’s organs and renders him ineffective. 

When a turkey is in a non-strutting position, the same rules apply. But instead of drawing two intersecting lines, picture a line on the side of your target’s leg. Then aim just to the point where that line intercepts the wind crease. 

This is where the heart and lungs are located on a turkey’s body, so it’s a good spot to strike with your arrow. However, it’s important to note that a turkey in a strut may have its feathers drop low and will exaggerate its size dramatically, which can make it challenging to get close enough to hit him with your arrow. 

On the other hand, if you have an unobstructed shot at the tom, aiming for the top of his wing will give you an excellent opportunity for a clean kill. This will require a little more practice to get accustomed to the bird’s strut, but it’s well worth the effort. 

Headshots are Ethical and Quick: 

Unlike big-game animals, turkeys don’t typically have the bone density needed to survive a shot. Therefore, a headshot is an ethical and quick shot that doesn’t damage the bird’s body or neck.