Ahhh. The age old question of what to do if the gobblers are henned up (which in our area they are badly right now)….I tend to go back to the cabin and drink heavily but there are some things that you can do.
If you are hunting at sunrise and this is happening then actually going back to the cabin isn’t a bad option. Later in the morning and early afternoon the hens will separate from the gobblers and go to their nest etc. The gobblers will get lonely and start looking for another booty call and they will be much more responsive to calling at this point. I would bet I’ve killed 90% of my birds between 9:00 AM and 4:00 PM. After 4:00 PM I’m usually drinking heavily regardless of what the birds are doing.
Another option is if you can hear the hens calling that are with the gobblers then start calling at them. Imitate exactly what they are doing and cut them off aggressively with your calls every time they start calling again. Many times the dominant hen in the group will get so pissed off she will drag the whole group to your set up to kick the Beeach’s arse who is giving her the business. Been successful with this many times. Cut, loud long yelp…whatever they are doing you cut them off and give it right back to them.
You can also try to get in front of the group if you can determine which way they are headed and you know the lay of the land. If successful in getting in front them it is much easier to get them into shotgun range but you will run the risk of bumping them if you don’t know the lay of the land or you are as fat and slow as I am.
Lastly you can sit tight and continue to call and a subordinate bird may work silently into your set up. Just because he’s a subordinate doesn’t necessarily mean he will be a young bird. Many two year old birds are tired of getting their arses kicked trying to score some trim and will often come in silently. I use this tactic quite often as I am usually too hung over to try hump it and get in front of the group.
If all of these fail then fall back to the Drink Heavily suggestion.
Mainly be stubborn and stay out in the field until you find a bird that will play the game.