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Location: Idaho
Joined: 06/01/2004
Posts: 1068
How far to lead a quack???

HOW FAR DO YOU LEAD A MALLARD AT 40 YARDS, CROSSING SHOT, HIGH-TAILING IT OUT OF THE COUNTY (PASS SHOOTING)?

Background: it seems I'm missing my longer range shots ... instinctively I'm pulling up with too little lead. When I consciously get `way' out in front of the bird - I'm hitting them hard. But I'm missing the instinctive shots cold.

This is going to be fun ...

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Location: Nova Scotia
Joined: 08/17/2002
Posts: 1762
How far to lead a quack???

That depends on the situation. I have hunted on the coast in extreme winds and connected with 8' leads and everything in between. 5' seem to be the norm but it does vary depending on the wind. They are a lot faster than we give them credit for.

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Location: Alabama
Joined: 08/25/2003
Posts: 634
How far to lead a quack???

I was on a reservoir the other day and jumped a pair of mallards. I ran beside them in the boat and at 35 miles per hour the were just slowly leaving me. Those little boogers are fast.

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Location: Idaho
Joined: 06/01/2004
Posts: 1068
How far to lead a quack???

Similarly, I was driving along a field near where I hunt and some Canada geese got up and flew parallel to the car. In just A FEW wingbeats they were cranking along at 35 and gaining speed ... the dang things looking like they were flying in slow motion.

Challenge for me is three-fold ... first, for long shots, not underestimating the range ... and, second, for closer shots, not underestimating the speed of these new hot loads. And, also, third, too many hours on the computer is making me left eye dominant and I shoot right handed. ARGH!!!!

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Joined: 08/20/2006
Posts: 10
Re: How far to lead a quack???
Serious Hunter wrote:
HOW FAR DO YOU LEAD A MALLARD AT 40 YARDS, CROSSING SHOT, HIGH-TAILING IT OUT OF THE COUNTY (PASS SHOOTING)?
This is going to be fun ...

It all depends on speed to it can be hovering sort of and flyiing to foot off the water. Flying about 40mph u would have to lead it by, im guessing 4 ft. If u cant hit em just hold your gun in front of them and shoot all your sheels at it. 200 bb's ar bound to hit it.

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Location: Illinois
Joined: 07/20/2006
Posts: 13
How far to lead a quack???

If you ask 10 good shots how far they lead a duck, you will probably get 10 different answers. In my opinion, if you try to precisely calculate the lead, you will probably stop the gun and miss. The secret is to keep the gun barrel moving. I do use a form of sustained lead on long passing shots but on shorter crossers i swing through the bird and pull the trigger when I see daylight between the barrel and the leading edge of the bird. The faster it's flying, the faster I swing. The sequence is the four B's. Butt, Belly, Beak, BOOM!i

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Joined: 05/05/2006
Posts: 2363
How far to lead a quack???

The problem is trying to make that long shot (pass shooting). They are difficult and the lead depends on how fast those ducks are flying. I try not to pass shoot, nothing wrong with it, it's just not a method of hunting I regularly use. I think shotgunners would all shoot better if they would just use a more open choke. I know I'll get flamed here, but an improved cylinder choke will actually get you more range than most shotgunners tend to realize and give you better chance of actually hitting something.

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Location: Idaho
Joined: 06/01/2004
Posts: 1068
How far to lead a quack???
Woodyard wrote:
If you ask 10 good shots how far they lead a duck, you will probably get 10 different answers. In my opinion, if you try to precisely calculate the lead, you will probably ... miss.

Yeah, the more I `concentrate' on leading a bird - the more I miss. Probably a matter of over-leading and stopping the gun (to look)?

Better approach is to do a lot of shooting before the season - then when a duck flies up - you know (instinctively) what to do. On the really long shots - well, yeah, get out there in front of the bird. Try this: aim at or ahead of the lead bird, and see which one actually folds Big smile

I agree with Westernhunter ... passing shots seem to be ... problematic.

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Location: Idaho
Joined: 06/01/2004
Posts: 1068
How far to lead a quack???

... and the strange thing ... the two do not cancel themselves out (over-leading and stopping the gun swing). Even though `surrounded' by shot - the quack flies away unscathed. Go figure!!!

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Location: ALABAMA
Joined: 12/06/2005
Posts: 81
How far to lead a quack???

In my expriece, when I having a bad day, Its usually from over thinking the shot.Trust your exprience and just make the shot. Personally, I do better with the pass through method on the longer shots. Bring the gun up, come from behind the bird along his flight path, allow the barrel to pass through the bird and ahead and pull the trigger while continuing the follow through. I believe the follow through( or lack there of) is where most shots are missed. just mho.

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