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Career Turkey Hunter at Age 20

Twenty-year-old Hunter Wallis of Greenfield Township, Pennsylvania, started hunting turkeys when he was 4 years old and won the 2018 Intermediate Division of the National Wild Turkey Federation Grand National Calling Contest.  This was the last year for him to compete in the Intermediate Division. He won the Intermediate Division four times, and the Junior Division three times in the Grand Nationals. He also won the Senior Division of the U.S. Open, the World Junior Championship, the World Intermediate Championship, the Pennsylvania State Open in both the Junior and Intermediate Divisions, and the Open Pennsylvania Championship three times. 

Hunter Wallis | Mossy Oak ProStaff

Hunter Wallis

Currently, I work with Zink Calls, Avian-X decoys, Mossy Oak, and I participate in turkey calling contests all over the nation. In high school, my friends thought it was kind of neat that I was in calling contests and working with these outdoors companies. But in college, hardly any of my friends know what I do. My dad Jeff and my mom Nancy have been my major supporters. They understand why I do what I do as far as turkey hunting and turkey calling. They always have been and are today my biggest supporters. My dad more or less has pushed me in the direction of doing what I really want to do and what I love to do. I think my dad wants success for me just as much as I do. 

Hunting Different States

Where I live is not far from New York. So, I've always hunted Pennsylvania and New York, and last year I hunted Florida. Zink Calls has been very good to me as far as helping me find and go to hunts. I also hunt in the Midwest, usually in Kansas or Texas, and I've been hunting Alabama now for quite awhile. Last year I went to Nebraska. I shot my first single season turkey Grand Slam last year, but I had already taken my Grand Slam before last year. I finished my first Grand Slam when I was 12 years old. 

Turkey Hunting Equipment

My shotgun is a Browning Maxus, and I shoot BXD turkey shotgun shells. I use Avian-X decoys on just about every hunt. I like to use male turkey decoys. Usually, I’ll set up a jake and a hen when I'm hunting. 

I believe that there are two major ingredients for a young person who wants a career in the turkey hunting industry, but I guess this information is true for the outdoors industry as a whole. 

  • Find a good mentor or several mentors who will help you learn what you need to know to be a successful hunter and to be able to work in the hunting industry. 
  • Stick with it! You're going to have days when turkeys don’t gobble and days when you’re not a successful hunter. In the calling contests, you’ll have days when you call lousy, and days when you call pretty good. But as long as you don’t quit, you have a chance to win.

John Phillips' turkey book

To learn more about turkey hunting, check out John E. Phillips’ Kindle eBook and print book, “Mossy Oak Pros Talk Turkey Tactics.” For a free copy of John E. Phillips’ “The Turkey Gobbler Getter Manual,” download here.

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