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Location: Oklahoma City, OK
Joined: 11/07/2006
Posts: 13
help a newbie plz

roughly how long on average should the anchor line be on my decoys, and does the knot matter. also when setting up the decoy spread, where do i want to be in relation to the direction of the wind. any help is appreciated, i dont know any waterfowlers to show me the ropes, so i'm trying to figure this out on my own. thanks.
-ryan

WesternHunter's picture
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Joined: 05/05/2006
Posts: 2368
help a newbie plz

I personally make my anchor line as long as I can safely wade. I'm 6'1" so I am setting decoys out in water no deeper than mid torso height. About 4 1/2 feet or so. I shallower water you can reel the line up a bit. The anchor needs to set in the bottom of the water body, so make the line that long.

Ducks land into the wind. I like to set up the spread in a U or V shaped formation. So set up so that the tip of your V or U is pointed into the wind. Also try to keep the sun to your back. This can be tricky since the wind and sun don't always cooperate with you. The sinerio that I just gave you is for hunting from the shoreline of a lake, reservoir, or slough.

Remember that decoys are there just to spark the ducks curiousity. I really have never believed that decoys actually fool duck into believing that the decoys are ducks too. Some times you don't even need decoys or calls if enough birds are coming into an area. Also try to minimize your movements. Waterfowl have excellent vision. One of the biggest mistakes I've seen novice waterfowlers do is to move around a lot when the birds are coming in. When you ahve birds coming in looking for a place to land you need to keep still. Even the best camouflage won't help you if there is too much moving around.

Offline
Location: Oklahoma City, OK
Joined: 11/07/2006
Posts: 13
help a newbie plz

thanks for the info, i'm tryin to gets started without dumpin too much money into it before i know how much i like it. plus this could be the last season i get to hunt for awhile, i leave for basic training april 1.

oh and all of mine hunting will be from shore, i dont have a boat. thanks again.
-ryan

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Location: ALABAMA
Joined: 12/06/2005
Posts: 81
help a newbie plz

If you dont know if you like it yet or not, I would suggest you quit now while you are ahead! It's a one way road if you dont bail soon.

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Location: Oklahoma City, OK
Joined: 11/07/2006
Posts: 13
help a newbie plz

well, i'm sure i'll enjoy it, i just like bein out there with friends and seein birds fly, if i bag some great if not its still a good time usually. plus i already bought some decoys, lol

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Location: Idaho
Joined: 06/01/2004
Posts: 1068
help a newbie plz

It's nice to be up-wind of your decoy spread so you are shooting the birds `in the face' on the way in (or as they take off if you let them land). Shooting waterfowl passing overhead is hard. Shooting them from the side is possible - but they leave fast. If they are passing overhead I can tell you it will be HARD to not look up - and when you do - ha! - they make you and that's it.

So, set up so you can see what is going on with good concealment and little having to look around.

I am amazed at how waterfowl (mallards, geese) can pick out form. Seems that with big game if you just hold still you are way ahead. But with ducks and geese they make you even if you are motionless. Doesn't matter how good your decoy spread is if they see you. They just won't mess with you.

Other thing: they will almost ALWAYS look closer than they are. Yes

WesternHunter's picture
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Joined: 05/05/2006
Posts: 2368
help a newbie plz

Just be sure that you're willing to brave the weather for waterfowl hunting. The best weather for duck hunting is usually cold foul windy weather. That keeps em flying looking for open water.

I just got back from 5 days of duck hunting in North Eastern Montana. We head up there once a years or every other years depending. Morning temps were around -15°F for this trip. Found a few well hidden warm water sloughs where the birds were so eager to land in they were willing to risk flying in flocks about 4 to 5 times a day despite our shooting. Every other body of water was frozen sold, even the rivers. The best shooting was usually right before sunrise and about the last 20 minutes of shooting light at sundown. What a vacation Big smile

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Location: Idaho
Joined: 06/01/2004
Posts: 1068
help a newbie plz

Westernhunter is describing an ideal situation ... open water when everything else if frozen. They'll be trying to get in all day.

Arghhhh ... - 15 ... things stop working well when it gets too cold ... like fingers. Brick Wall,)

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Location: Oklahoma City, OK
Joined: 11/07/2006
Posts: 13
help a newbie plz

well i can deal with the cold so i dont mind that, the place i've been hunting, i haven't seen much duck activity, but there have been some geese movin through so i think i might set out my goose decoys, and see if i can get some action.

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