The best turkey hunting guns for 2022

Updated November 16, 2022, 9:55 am

After years of getting bigger, turkey guns continue to get smaller as smaller bore options gain interest among hunters. While you can still find fancy new 12-inch 3½-inch gauges for spring woods, they’ve now been joined by more and more 20s and .410s, which just means more options for you. You can credit TSS ammunition and improved lead loads like the Winchester 20-yard Long Beard for the key, and it may also be true that more hunters are realizing that the real fun of turkey hunting is getting close of birds. Small bore guns fit perfectly into that hunting philosophy, and they are easy to carry and handle, and much less difficult to fashion. Below are the best new Turkish guns from 2022, as well as the best models from last year, all of which are still available and remain great options with the latest features. Also, 2021 was the year of the sub-gauge Turkish gun, including three models coming in .20 and two in .410.

This year, Weatherby adds another sub-gauge option in a new affordable intertia semiauto available in 12 or 20. Otherwise, the 2022 leans back toward the big gun. So you want the extra punch and reach of a 12, there are plenty to choose from, including a surprise offer for Sauer.


Browning is offering a limited run of its excellent Maxus II smooth-bore gas gun with a 26-inch barrel, extended choke, Picatinny rail and Mossy Oak Bottomland camo. The synthetic stock features both rubber grip panels and a soft combed insert along with an Inflex pad, all of which will help you endure pre-season modeling sessions. At about 7 pounds, the Maxus is light enough to carry through the woods, but strong enough for serious wing shooting. Remove the rail in the fall and you can shoot birds and ducks with this gun as well, which helps rationalize the price.

turkey shotgun

Mossberg as it expands its 940 Pro series with a pair of dedicated 3-inch 12-bore guns. The 940 upgrades to the 930 with upgraded gas system parts, corrosion-resistant internals and stainless steel recoil springs. Both guns have cutouts in the receiver for an RMR trace reflex sight and a shroud if you decide not to mount one. Stocks fit spacers up to 13 inches. Both guns have enlarged bolt handles and closer buttons, synthetic stocks, and are covered in Mossy Oak Greenleaf camo. One has a 24-inch barrel, usually a favorable length for better models, while the other comes with a compact 18 ½-inch barrel, ideal for carrying and closing.

Turkish Sauer SL5 gun

The German gunmaker Sauer dates back to the 18thth century, but there is nothing old-fashioned or traditional about the Turkish SL5. Sauer collaborated with Bruno Civolani, the inventor of the inertial system, on a line of semiauto inertial shotguns that now includes a turkey model. The guns have barrels tapped to the legal minimum of 18 ½ inches to make them easy to carry through the woods and handle in the brush. The barrels have a fiber optic bead and the receivers come with Picatinny rail installed. The pistol grip synthetic stock comes in your choice of three different Mossy Oak designs. The three choke tubes that come with the gun include an extended Carlson turkey choke.

turkey shotgun

Inertia semiautos are lightweight, which makes them easy to carry through the spring woods. They hit harder than heavier guns and gas guns, but who cares when you can only fire once all spring? The Turkish-made stock comes dressed for the woods with a 22-inch bombshell barrel and a coating of original Mossy Oak Bottomland camo. It features sling swivel studs and rubber grip panels on the stock and forend. Weatherby has been sourcing guns from overseas manufacturers since the 50’s and how they choose their partners: The Element is a good gun and now it’s even better if you want a turkey gun.

turkey shotgun

Turkey hunting – done right – is a one-shot sport, and it’s good to see a single shot represented among this year’s guns. Break-action single-shots are light and compact, which are good features in a slug gun, and Henry’s new Single-Shot is woods-ready with a single-layer Mossy Oak Obsession, iron sights, a barrel drilled and tapped for an optic, and a turkey choke. It has a 24-inch barrel and weighs only 6¾ pounds. You’ll feel this gun fire if you shoot it with a 3½-inch load, but you’ll hardly know it’s there when you’re slung over your shoulder.

turkey shotgun

A well-made Turkish inertia gun that has caught fire in the short time it has been available in the US, the Retay Masai Mara comes in a new 20-gauge turkey pattern, available in several camo patterns. It has a 22-inch barrel with ventilation ribs and a receiver drilled and tapped for the supplied Picatinny rail if you want to mount an optic. The Masai Mara features a bolt designed to eliminate the battery misfiring that happens with inertia guns from time to time and is especially frustrating when it happens in spring forests.

wild 320

Modeled after Winchester’s Model 1300/SXP, the Savage 320 is a Chinese-made pump that sells for a very low price that can put a dedicated 3-inch 12- or 20-inch turkey gun in the hands of just about anyone . The 22-inch barrel comes with a turkey choke and adjustable fiber optic sights bolted to a vent rib. The pale green synthetic stock features a hybrid finger hole design that is very practical for turkey hunting.

turkey shotgun

The Affinity Franchi has become quite popular among upland and waterfowl hunters who pretty much want to shoot a Benelli without paying Benelli prices. Now, turkey hunters can purchase a lightweight and reliable Franchi inertia gun designed specifically for the spring woods. The Affinity Turkey and Turkey Elite shotguns feature a very comfortable pistol grip, a camo barrel, and a 24-inch barrel with a turkey choke and adjustable hooded rear and front sights. They are also drilled and tapped for an optic. Turkey comes in 3-inch 12- and 20-gauge, as well as 3½-inch 12-gauge, choice of camo patterns. The Turkey Elite comes in 3-inch 12- or 20-gauge with camo and Cerakote.

turkey shotgun

Mossberg’s imported .410 gas gun makes a pure turkey version for those who want to try shooting big birds with small bores. An inexpensive weapon that you hardly hear a discouraging word about, the SA-410 Turkey was introduced in mid-2020, so it missed the first turn in the turkey woods, not now it is ready for its appearance of tight Dipped in the original old-school Bottomland, it features a rib-mounted ghost ring sight, a Picatinny rail, and a 26-inch barrel with an extended cocking choke.

Tristar Viper

The Tri Star Viper G2 Turkey comes in 12, 20 and .410 versions for hunters who want to shoot a light semi-auto. The 12 weighs only 6.8 pounds, the 20 6.3, and the .410 an even 6 pounds. The tactical-style pistol grip is extremely comfortable to hang when perched against a tree, and the gun has a Picatinny rail for mounting an optic. The 24-inch tubes are just the right length to shoot good patterns with high TSS buck loads through the gun’s XX Full turkey choke.

Read more: Best Turkey Hunting Gear for 2021

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