As God As My Witness, I Thought Turkeys Looked Like My Brother

Lord, I hope this was somehow filmed by one of those game warden shows on Animal Planet that Carin and I like to interchangeably call Nature Cops.

A hunter who believed he had taken down a pair of turkeys set out to find the birds, only to discover his brother and friend wounded on the ground. Kenneth Dienst, who was out hunting with the victims on the opening day of turkey season in Kansas, accidentally shot the pair after mistaking their disguises for real birds.
“Right after he shot, he thought he saw a turkey flopping on the ground, but when he hurried up there, he saw two guys rolling on the ground,” Jim Bussone, a Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism game warden, told The Wichita Eagle. “He’d shot [both] in the face. The shooter swore he’d seen strutting toms and some other turkeys right up until then.”

Tempting as it is to read that and then be all like lol that Kenneth is such a maroon, that’s not exactly true. He’s not completely blameless, but the real maroons, at least based on the preliminary investigation, are brother Gary and their pal Justin Wiles.

First, we have to understand how the hell a couple of guys could be mistaken for turkeys to begin with. The answer to that is that the group was doing something called fanning, which involves using preserved feathers and turkey calls to trick turkeys into coming near you so you can pick them off.

Initially this worked out well as Kenneth was split off from the others, but according to the warden, at some point the others returned without letting him know, which even to me who knows jack shit about hunting seems like a bad idea.

So now, since everyone was fanning, we had a bunch of dudes hunting each other instead of hunting actual turkeys. And so it came to pass that we learned that Kenneth is the quickest draw in the family. Which one is the dimmest bulb may still be up for debate, but they can sort that out another day as everyone is expected to make a full recovery.

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