• Ken Perrotte

Soggy Early Season Turkey Hunt in New York Vineyards Yields No Birds, But Offers Insights

Updated: Nov 9, 2020

Click on photo for article in NWTF Turkey Country magazine

An early May excursion to Chautauqua County in far northwestern New York along the shores of Lake Erie didn't yield any birds, although my hunting partner Gary Burmaster and I could have doubled on jakes (juvenile gobblers) our first morning out. The weather was mostly miserable, rain every day and fog every morning - sometimes almost all morning. It would have been cool to get a mature gobbler to thunder from the treetops, fly down unseen and then strut out of the thick mist toward our decoys and his unsuspecting doom. But, that didn't happen. The weather cleared by mid-morning of the final day of our hunt. Gary had a hunch about a far corner of a remote vineyard where he had been successful in tagging late morning toms in the past. It was a sweet setup, but no turkeys wanted to play. I returned to Virginia with a turkey tag still in my pocket and a case of wine in my car.

Burmaster is a farmer, a grape farmer turned winemaker. His Liberty Vineyards is one of

the New York wine country's most popular venues, famed for its award-winning products and laid back ambiance. He has been a dedicated turkey hunter for 30 years and is a leader in the National Wild Turkey Federation's Lakeshore Longbeards chapter. Many farmers, including grape farmers, consider wild turkeys an agricultural pest and they routinely promote for expanded killing of the birds. Burmaster acknowledges turkeys will eat some grapes but based on his longstanding observations, he thinks the birds do more harm them good. The reason is they are usually after protein-rich insects when they are in the vineyard. In that regard, they are a bit of a pest-control agent for him, helping his vines. Deer and, especially, raccoons, are much more serious problems when it comes to grape munching, he notes.

I hope you click on the photo at the top of the blog and read the detailed feature in Turkey Country magazine. A silver lining to the trip was being able to make an afternoon excursion with Marty Klemann of Canadaway Creek Outfitters to fish for steelhead and smallmouth bass. We didn't score on the steelhead but I did catch a nice smallie. This western new York area is an outdoors wonderland. Multiple trips were planned there this year (2020) but New York's COVD-19 quarantine rules kept many nonresidents away. Here is hoping for improved opportunities in 2021.

Oh, and what were my favorite wines from Liberty Vineyards? Well, I liked White Side of the Moon and Cat Noir for their names as well as taste. Rufus Red and Barrel-select Noirette were tasty. The Reisling and Dry Diamond also rocked. Now, keep on Rambling!

How sloppy can it get? Pretty sloppy!

Marty Klemann tells us a little about Canadaway Creek Outfitters in this short clip.

Subscribe for new stories, reviews, and more. 
(Don't worry, we won't spam you)

  • White Facebook Icon
  • White Twitter Icon
  • White Instagram Icon

© 2017-2020 Kmunicate Worldwide LLC, All Rights Reserved. Outdoors adventures, hunting, fishing, travel, innovative wild game and fish recipes, gear reviews and coverage of outdoors issues. Except as noted, all text and images are by Ken Perrotte (Outdoors Rambler (SM). Some items, written by Ken Perrotte and previously published elsewhere, are revised or excerpted under provisions of the Fair Use Doctrine


Privacy Policy:

What type of information do you collect? We receive, collect and store any information you enter on our website. In addition, we collect the Internet protocol (IP) address used to connect your computer to the Internet; login; e-mail address; password; computer and connection information and purchase history. We may use software tools to measure and collect session information, including page response times, length of visits to certain pages, page interaction information, and methods used to browse away from the page. We also collect personally identifiable information (including name, email, password, communications); payment details (including credit card information – although the site does not currently engage in any type of e-commerce), comments, feedback, product reviews, recommendations, and personal profile.

How do you collect information? When a visitor to the site sends you a message through a contact form or subscribes to receive updates and other communications about new stuff on the site, we collect that subscriber’s email address. That address is used only for marketing campaigns or other information we send regarding site updates or changes. Site usage data may be collected by our hosting platform Wix.com or by third-party services, such as Google Analytics or other applications offered through the Wix App Market, placing cookies or utilizing other tracking technologies through Wix´s services, may have their own policies regarding how they collect and store information. As these are external services, such practices are not covered by the Wix Privacy Policy. These services may create aggregated statistical data and other aggregated and/or inferred Non-personal Information, which we or our business partners may use to provide and improve our respective services. Data may also be collected to comply with any applicable laws and regulations.

How do you store, use, share and disclose your site visitors' personal information? Our company is hosted on the Wix.com platform. Wix.com provides us with the online platform that allows us to share information or sell products and services to you. Your data may be stored through Wix.com’s data storage, databases and the general Wix.com applications. They store your data on secure servers behind a firewall.

How do you communicate with your site visitors? The primary means of communicating with site users is via email for the purposes of marketing campaigns, promotions, and update. We may contact you to notify you regarding your subscription, to troubleshoot problems, resolve a dispute, collect fees or monies owed, to poll your opinions through surveys or questionnaires, to send updates about our company, or as otherwise necessary to contact you to enforce our User Agreement, applicable national laws, and any agreement we may have with you. For these purposes we may contact you via email, telephone, text messages, and postal mail.

How do you use cookies and other tracking tools? Our hosting platform Wix.com and our analytical services providers such as Google Analytics may place cookies that facilitate their services. To be perfectly honest, Kmunicate Worldwide LLC, the owner of outdoorsrambler.com, never looks at cookies or any other tracking/data collection tools, only the aggregated reports provided by the hosting service or analytical services providers.

How can your site visitors withdraw their consent? If you don’t want us to process your data anymore, please contact us using the “Contact Us” form on the site.

Privacy policy updates: We reserve the right to modify this privacy policy at any time, so please review it frequently. Changes and clarifications will take effect immediately upon their posting on the website. If we make material changes to this policy, we will notify you here that it has been updated, so that you are aware of what information we collect, how we use it, and under what circumstances, if any, we use and/or disclose it.