How excited must NRA President Jim Porter be now that he's on the ground and driving to Osceola camp? Like the rest of us hunters, he knows not much beats the anticipation of and the sound of that chilling gobble on opening day. Jim just may have a leg up on the morning hunt, too, considering he’ll be joined by our good friend Ray Eye, host of the radio show “Eye on the Outdoors” and noted outdoor writer and turkey caller who has won more than his fair share of national turkey-calling championships! Of course, success still comes down to Porter making the shot, which shouldn’t be an issue considering his track record in the hunting woods. If I’m an Osceola gobbler, I’m headed for Mississippi right about now.
For a fast fact on the Osceola, it’s smaller and darker than the Eastern, the most predominant U.S. subspecies, with less white veining and narrower, irregular white bars and more dominant black bars on the wing feathers. When they fold their wings on their backs, there also are no whitish triangular patches that Eastern birds have and their body feathers are even more iridescent green. As with most species in nature, the Osceola’s coloration and behavior is ideal for the flat pine woods, oaks, palmetto hammocks and swamp habitats of Florida. But with Porter's keen eye and Ray Eye having, well, an "eye" on the outdoors, things are about to get interesting!