Turkey bowhunting is an often frustrating—but therefore all the more rewarding—sport. It takes patience, focus and, above all, attention to detail. One of those details is your broadheads. Luckily, the days of hunting with deer broadheads that miss, pass through or destroy your quarry beyond harvesting are long gone, and the market now features a number of broadheads with the features necessary to bag a gobbler. These are the five best turkey broadheads currently available.
What to Know Before You Decide on a Turkey Broadhead
How Many Grains Should a Turkey Broadhead Weigh?
Grains is a unit of weight in archery. Being made of metal, your broadhead usually adds a considerable amount of weight to the arrow, which can be a good or bad thing depending on what you’re looking for. Turkey broadheads usually range from 100 to 200 grains, and the best arrows for turkey hunting are normally between 400 and 500 grains.
More weight can give the broadhead more penetration, especially if you’re hunting deer. However, accuracy is more important when it comes to gobblers since they have a smaller kill zone, and you don’t need to penetrate as deeply. That’s why I usually recommend a lighter broadhead.
That said, if you have a high-powered compound bow that can still send heavy arrows long distances, a heavy broadhead can help punch through thick feathers or fully decapitate the bird if you take a neck shot.
Are Mechanical or Fixed-Blade Broadheads Better for Turkey Hunting?
Just like for deer, the debate between mechanical and fixed-blade broadheads for turkey hunting will never end. Honestly, I’m partial to fixed-blade broadheads just like I am for whitetails, especially if you hunt frequently. You’ll get enough practice to shoot them accurately, and you can more easily reuse them.
Some people can definitely benefit from mechanical broadheads, though. Namely, new hunters or those who hunt infrequently may find it easier to shoot mechanical broadheads accurately.
What Makes a Good Turkey Broadhead?
As opposed to deer broadheads, the best bowhunting turkey broadhead has a much larger cutting diameter. This gives you more leeway with the much smaller kill zones of turkeys so you don’t have to be perfectly accurate. It also helps prevent the broadhead from passing all the way through, which could allow the gobbler to run off and die a painful death without you even being able to harvest it.
Additionally, you want a turkey broadhead with really sharp blades. Unlike deer hunting broadheads, which need to be better at punching through thick bones and cartilage, turkey hunting broadheads have easier tissue to work with, but you’re more concerned with getting clean cuts such as full decapitation.
Can You Use Regular Deer Broadheads for Turkey Hunting?
Although turkey-specific broadheads tend to be a bit bigger than deer broadheads, you can theoretically use deer broadheads just as well for turkeys. In fact, if you’re hunting over longer distances, it may be a good idea. You’ll just need to have pinpoint accuracy. Some especially destructive deer broadheads like those with trocar tips might also do more damage to the gobbler than you’d like, destroying some of the meat.