April 23, 2015
By David Hart
Can you justify spending a couple hundred or even a thousand dollars on a shotgun you'll shoot just a handful of times a year? That's an easy question to answer, of course. Yes, you'll be glad the gun braced across your knee is designed for a single purpose the next time a gobbler struts into range.
Many specialized turkey guns have features that only a turkey hunter could love and appreciate. Pistol-grip stocks, turkey-specific sights, camo patterns that match the woods we hunt and chokes designed to throw tight patterns at long ranges.
Others serve dual purposes and can be the ultimate multi-season hunting gun. Take your pick, but don't fret about buying another gun. Your turkey season depends on it.
Check out the best new turkey shotguns:
Browning | Silver NWTF
If it has the National Wild Turkey Federation
logo embedded in the stock and the Browning
name on it, you know it's a turkey killing machine. Built on Browning's popular and reliable semi-automatic Silver line, the NWTF edition
is wrapped in Mossy Oak Break Up Country camouflage and comes with an Invector Plus Full Strut extended choke tube.
The rifle-style HiViz 4-in-1 fiber optic sights help you stay on target from full strut to head-up so you can make a one-shot kill every time. It shoots 3 ½-inch shells, as well as 2 ¾ and 3-inch. The barrel is 24 inches and the gun weighs 7 pounds, 4 ounces.
Chiappa | C6-12 Youth 20 Gauge
Is there a better way to get your kids involved in turkey hunting than with their own gun? Chiappa's pump-action C6-12 youth model
is chambered in a lighter-recoil 20-gauge and is downsized to fit smaller-framed shooters.
The synthetic stock and forend are wrapped in Next G1camo and the receiver and barrel are matte black for low reflection. The barrel is 22 inches and the gun weighs just 5 pounds. Although it does not come with a turkey choke, the barrel is threaded with the Remchoke system.
CZ | 612 Magnum Turkey
Bigger isn't always better, but some turkey hunters prefer the peace-of-mind that comes with a longer 12-gauge shell. That's why CZ's 612 Magnum
might be the ideal shotgun. It's capable of shooting 3 ½-inch shells, which deliver more shot and more killing power.
The pump-action is reliable and simple to use, giving you all the confidence you need when a gobbler struts into range. It comes with a 26-inch barrel, an extra-full choke and a modified choke, making it an ideal multi-purpose shotgun. The barrel, receiver and synthetic stock are wrapped with Realtree Xtra Green camouflage. The 612 weighs just 6 pounds, 8 ounces, making it easier to carry the extra weight of a turkey after a morning hunt.
H&R | Pardner Single-Shot
A single-shot may seem like a handicap in the turkey woods, but how often do you need a follow-up shot on a turkey? H&R's Pardner 10-gauge
will help you put the bird on the ground with one shot from a pellet-packed 3 ½-inch shell. The wood stock is wrapped in camo and a ventilated butt pad will help take the punch out of the heaviest loads.
The Pardner not only comes with sling swivel studs, it also comes with a sling to help you stay on your feet longer in chase of far-off birds. It has a 24-inch barrel and is drilled and tapped for a scope mount. The 10-gauge is available with an extra-full screw-in choke and includes an automatic ejector.
Mossberg | 500 Left-Hand
Lefties don't have many choices when it comes to turkey guns, but Mossberg
just gave them one more option with the addition of the 500 Left-Hand
. No more powder residue in the eyes, no more spent shells crossing your line of sight and no more fumbling for the safety when a bird steps into sight.
The popular 500 has a top tang mounted safety, making it easy to use for any shooter. The 24-inch, vent rib barrel is ported and is topped with adjustable fiber optic sights. It includes a XX-full extended choke tube and is wrapped in Mossy Oak Break-Up Infinity camo.
Weatherby | SA-459 Turkey
The Weatherby name is synonymous with quality, so it should come as no surprise their specialized turkey gun, the SA-459 Turkey
, is built with the same high standards as all their other guns. Even better, the turkey version is built with the same action as Weatherby's popular and reliable SA-08 semi-automatic.
The economical auto-loader is built with a pistol-grip stock for extra comfort and recoil reduction and it comes with an extra-full choke for ultra-tight patterns. It's dipped in Realtree Xtra Green camo and comes with a Picatinny-type rail that doubles as a rear sight and a capable scope mount. The SA-459 also has a green fiber optic front bead sight.
Winchester | SX3 Longbeard
Leave it Winchester
to give turkey hunters the ultimate tool for bringing home a bird. Although it was introduced in 2014, the Longbeard
is worth a look this season.
Built on the brand's popular SX3 action, the Longbeard includes a pistol grip and an adjustable comb that gives you the perfect fit, no matter who you are or what sights you use. It's chambered for 3 ½-inch, 12-gauge shells and includes a cantilevered scope mount, a Briley extra-full Long Beard extended choke tube, a 26-inch barrel, a Truglo fiber optic front sight and an adjustable rear sight. It's wrapped in new Mossy Oak Break-Up Country camo and weighs 7pounds, 8 ounces.
The Essentials Gear Box.
Our editors have hand-picked these essential pieces of gear to make you a more successful hunter when you hit the game trails this season.