Turkey Calling Guide How to use a diaphragm | Bone Collector

Turkey Calling Guide | The What, How, and When of Turkey Calling

Bone Collector | Fully Loaded Turkey Calling Guide

Whatever level of turkey calling you are currently at, whether you sound like an eerily sounding sick, crippled hen, a near perfect lonesome lady, or a sweet sounding, seductive, fluent turkey talker, you could always use a little more practice in the final weeks before turkey season. Lucky for you, we have compiled some intensely detailed information on which type of call does what, how to use them, when to use them, and extra tips on selecting the right type of call. This is to better your turkey calling techniques and strategies, no matter what level you are at, beginner, intermediate, or advanced.

Figure Out Your Calling Level

This might be obvious to some, but harder for…well let’s face it, the hard headed turkey hunter. If you think you are an expert turkey caller, than you might want to re-evaluate and think again!  How many turkeys have you killed, how many turkeys have you busted, and how good do you really sound? If you think you are that good, get you’re most successful turkey hunting buddies and put on a show…the comments might be more negative than you would have thought.

For some it might be harder to admit, but figuring out whether to label yourself at the beginner, intermediate, or advanced calling level will help you by the time you are finished with this article. From selecting the right call, to using the more advanced mouth calls in the right scenarios, and in the right tone, particular information will be more valuable to you depending on how much or how little you know.

Selecting the Right Call

There are several types of turkey calls on the market. Friction, tube, locater, and the well-known diaphragm calls all have their place among turkey hunters. Here is a quick overview of the style, when, why and how to use each call.

  • Tube Turkey Call

Knight & Hale Original Widow Maker Tube Turkey Call
(video)- The Original Widow Maker Tube Call is designed for optimal volume for long-distance calls, but it is doubly deadly in that it can produce the faintest of hen calls.

Tube calls are used by pro hunters in many cases, they can make virtually every sound a turkey would make, including a pretty darn good gobble, giving them a strong place in the call selection guide. Tube calls are used by placing your lower lip on the bottom of the call on the reed and pressing your upper lip on the top of the call. Once you get used to the call, it has a high probability of becoming one of your favorites in your bag of turkey tricks.

Widow Maker 2 Turkey Tube Call | Bone Collector

  • Friction Turkey Call

How To Use a Turkey Pot Call | Knight & Hale
(video)- Rich Miller has some basic tips that will help you when using a Pot Call. Practice using these fundamentals for a better sounding Pot Call this spring.

Friction calls are the general term used to describe your pot calls, box calls, and push/pull calls. Friction calls are by far the easiest to use when it comes to first time turkey hunters and hunters at the intermediate level. From the simple push/pull call, and box call, to the slightly elevated user level of the slate or glass calls.

Friction Turkey Calling Guide | Bone Collector

  • Locater Turkey Call

Knight & Hale Shock Gobble Owl Call Turkey Locator
(video)- Pinpoint your prey with the Knight & Hale Pinpoint Shock Gobble Owl Call with Hoot Enhancer. This game call is the original reed-type owl call. It is one of the few owl calls that can accurately reproduce the exact sounds of the barred owl.

Locator Calls are used by nearly all turkey hunters, regardless of which turkey call they prefer. These are not to simulate turkeys, but calls and sounds that will locate toms. Sounding off a like an owl, hawk, pileated woodpecker, and crow all result in a tom gobbling. This become advantageous to locate a gobbler on his roost, or locate which section of timber, holler, or field a gobbler will be in before you make your move on him.

Locater Turkey Calling Guide | Bone Collector

  • Diaphragm Turkey Call

Mouth calls, or diaphragm calls are easily the most dominating turkey call of the market. They are small, easy to carry, and relatively inexpensive, making them effective and easy to get used to. While the simplicity of the call itself is popular, learning how to correctly us a Diaphragm call takes more explanation.

Turkey Calling Guide Bad Company Diaphragm Set | Bone CollectorThe diaphragm hands-free usage and (with the right user) exceptionally realistic sounds, are the best call available to turkey hunters. While diaphragm calls offer the best of the best, if you are just picking up a new diaphragm call for this season you may want to reconsider. You don’t want to start off turkey season with a new call, instead enter the woods with a call you are comfortable with. A simple friction box, slate, or glass call are much easier to master in a short time span. Being hands-free is an advantage, only if you can get the gobbler in that sort of range. While a simple friction box call, slate, or glass call can be easier to use and desired in some scenarios, the diaphragm call if mastered properly, will give you the power to literally become the turkey as far as a big tom is concerned. Still yet, locator calls have their place to locate birds afar, without getting them to move, or locating birds on the roost. Here are some basics on how to use each call.

Basics of a Diaphragm Call

How to use a diaphragm Turkey Calling Guide | Bone Collector

Diaphragm calls are obviously one of the most realistic and most advantageous calls on the market. A mouth or Diaphragm call is made by stretching latex or a reed across a shaped frame in a plastic skirt. Placing the mouth call horseshoe out on the roof of your mouth and blowing air across will give you your sound. Using differing pressure of air, and your tongue, along with saying some words, you will start to differentiate calls such as yelps, cutes, clucks, and purrs.

Again, whether you are at the beginning, intermediate, or advanced level of calling, you could always use some extra tips and practice. When you begin to use a mouth call, you will quickly learn there is much more you can do than simply blow some air. While you might be limited to 1-3 different variations depending on whether you are using the Switchblade 3-1 Box Call or the Dual Threat Glass and Slate Turkey Pot Call, a mouth call is seemingly an endless amount of variations all depending on how you use your air and mouth.

Besides you, there are numerous types of diaphragm calls, from easier clean doubles, to cut triple reeds, and different thickness of the reeds themselves, and they can all produce another entire set of unique sounds.


If you are at the beginning stages of turkey calling with a mouth call, you need to focus on selecting an easy beginner call and placing it correctly in your mouth. After you have associated your mouth, tongue, and air pressure you can start practicing the simple yelps, cuts, clucks, keekee, and purr calls.

How to use a Diaphragm (Mouth) Call: Turkey Calling Tutorial for Beginners
(video) – Learn the basics of How to Yelp, Cut, Cluck, Keekee, and Purr on a mouth call for turkey calling and hunting. In this instructional, how-to mouth call video, 14x National Turkey Calling Champion Chris Parrish gives expert tips on the proper rhythm of the Keekee sound on a Diaphragm call. This is everything you need to know about calling turkeys using a mouth call. Learn these basic turkey calling fundamentals for better success during the spring and in calling competitions. These are the best turkey calls to learn to bag a gobbler.



Once you achieve the intermediate levels of turkey calling, and you are comfortable with your choice of call. You can now begin to understand which call and sounds is appropriate during which calling situation. Calling turkeys on the roost, striking a shock gobble, gauging the “temperature” on a bird, and creating excitement on a held up gobbler, all require different tactics to success.

When and How to Call Turkeys: Intermediate Turkey Calling Tutorial
(video)- Practice alongside a proven turkey calling master in our how-to turkey call series. In this instructional, how-to mouth call video, 14x National Turkey Calling Champion Chris Parrish helps turkey hunters understand when and how to call for gobblers in the spring. Learn from the best and listen as a Knight & Hale expert demonstrates proper calling techniques on a diaphragm (mouth) Call. These are the best turkey calling tips for intermediate turkey hunters.



Once you become comfortable with your call, and you are well-educated with your turkey talk, you will become more interested in different mouth calls, raspier, cleaner, easy to use, or for maximum control. Looking for different “hen voices” and having confidence in these voices, will take some practice and playing around.

How To Choose a diaphragm (Mouth) Call: Advanced Turkey Calling
(video)- Selecting the correct mouth call can be the difference in sounding good and sounding great. Here is expert advice on choosing the right diaphragm call. Multi-National Turkey Calling champion, Chris Parrish walks you through the different styles and cuts of mouth calls and the advantages of each one. Take you turkey calling to a new level this spring with more great tips from Knight & Hale. 

Whatever level of turkey talk you are currently at, it always helps to read up, do some research, watch some tips, and practice before turkey season opens up. If you are looking for the best turkey call, or how to use a turkey call you have come to the right place. This turkey calling guide gives you some detailed information and some tools to help you dig a little further if you’d like.

Selecting the right turkey call, using it correctly and learning these tips, will result in a productive turkey hunting season this spring. When you are successful, print the campaign banner below (click banner to enlarge, right click on banner and click “save image as” to print).  Get creative, and use the campaign banner in your turkey hunting pictures and get ready to submit on our Facebook Page to win some CSTF2016 prizes!



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