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Hey guys, just wandering what i need to do to go duck hunting. I have never been but really want to but i dont know anyone or have any idea of how to get into it. Im a deer hunter and I had a guy tell me not to do it. He said once i went i wouldnt deer hunt anymore but it seems fun and i really like all the action and i guess its just something different. I live in North east Alabama so if any of you knew some places around here or even a place close by out of state. Or if it would be better to find someone to go with or whatever the case may be. I just want to try it and see for myself if i like it. which im sure i will!!!!! thanks for any info....

Browningwin300
 

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well I do both deer and duck hunt but at the moment its more deer than duck I just dont have the time to do them both If I really got into duck hunting like I would like, I would have to quit bowhunting. the problem is I have a kinda new bow. And MY thought is that duck hunting costs more.
 

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I cant help you out on duck hunting but since you probably dont live that far from me I have an idea..

You learn the ropes on duck hunting and then invite me to go with you!! Sound good?
 

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hahahaha, buckfever that sounds like a plan!!!:pickle: Well im a die hard deer hunter and prob would never quit to actually just duck hunt. But i have always had that thing for it. Because you know how we all have bought some deer hunting dvd's just to pass time when the ladies are shopping on a friday night and i dont want to get out late. But i will buy duck hunting dvd's too and it really makes me have the itch for it. But i had a friend in high school that went all the time with his dad and they always invited me but i was always to busy for going. But now i want to go and they only deer hunt now and i havent spoken to him in a while. So i dont really know anyone who does and didnt know if there is some kind of like club or organization nearby that would be a good way to check it out or something. But buckfever, when i get to slinging the lead i will sure invite you guys on a nice little trip under the skies.......
 

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I grew up duck hunting on the marshes & farm fields in NW Ohio. My son now hunts duck, geese, and deer. The cost issue is what you make it, how many decoys do you need, more is better. If hunting water then a boat/motor painted camo will be needed. Never hunt solo when hunting water, too many things can and do go wrong. Try to find someone experienced in decoy set-up and proper calling it takes years of practice to do it well. Shotgun 12 ga, at least 3", many are going to 3.5" for geese. Small streams can be hunted from a canoe and a few decoys say 1 doz. Big water hunting and 6 doz decoys would be needed and a good boat. I don't think duck hunting or anything else would replace deer hunting but too many sports may replace the other half and that might be a bad thing.
 

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To me, I would rather goose hunt than deer hunt but then again, I am trying to even it out now.

Do you have a dog? If not, you will need a boat. "CANOES are dangerous!!!!" Too many times people drown using them and duck hunting due to hypothermia and so forth. There are too many deals on flat bottom boats out there. Look around. You will need a good motor and possibly a trolling motor depending on where you are trying to hunt.

Decoys: Go to roger sprting goods and look for the deals. It is where alot of the waterfowlers get there gear. Dakota, GHG, Final Approach, and Big Foot all make really nice decoys.

Calls: They range from about $10-$160 or so. Go to a Cabelas or local shop that has a display and will let you try them out. Get what fits you.

Duck Calls: RNT makes good calls, Echo, and there are others
Goose Calls: Foiles, Tim Grounds, Death Row Calls, etc.
Once again, get what fits you

Semi-Auto is really nice as you can really sling the steel at em faster.....

Waders: Don't skimp here.... Cabelas has some good waders and stand by there stuff. I have two different pair. One for early season and one for late season. The late season pair I have, have armorflex which gives it an extra layer of protection. Drake makes a pair that is getting a lot of hype right now. Lacrosse are good too.

You will also have to think about weights and rigging, blind bag to carry your stuff, decoy bags, waterproof gloves as well as a good warm pair for in the blind. If you are hunting fields, you will need a way to get your decoys to the field as some will not let you drive in and can be a long walk. Sleds and game carts work nice for this. I have learned to paint just about anything camo since starting and if I don't have spray paint on my fingers at some point during the winter, something isn't right.

One of the sights that I go to are goosehuntingchat.com or duckhuntingchat.com and also chasinthelimit.org which are all good sites like this one and just ask whatever is on your mind and they will get back to you. You might even find some guys in your area that you didn't know hunting for ducks and geese.

Good luck to you..
Mac
 

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Discussion Starter #7
thanks for the info mac. i had a guy come in today at the store and asked me if i was slaughtering the ducks this year. I guess cause i had my camo work hat on, and i told him sir, i have never even been duck hunting. He said son you better realize that your sitting on one of the best flyways here and all you have to do is go get with the game warden and ask where you can hunt and go shoot em. of course after i bought stamp and license, but i thought hmmmm sounds good enough. but i do have a dog actually i got a 8 week old golden retriever but i didnt actually get him for hunting. i got him for the fiance but wouldnt hurt for him to chase a few ducks....lol. well, should i have someone train him or is that even a good dog or train him myself. i know you need a dog but i didnt know what all has to be done. So guys, i do thank you all for the help and tips you have giving as i may not make a duck hunting trip this year i think i want to by next year so yal wish me luck and happy hunting to you all.
 

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I duck hunted from a wide bottom canoe for many years and never turned one over, actually in a marsh a good quality canoe is a bonus as it is nimble and quiet. Anyway there's a lot of good advice here. My son has been tearing up the ducks and geese in southern Ohio. They have a ton of equipment and do really well. Finding an experienced buddy would help you a whole lot. Good luck.
 

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yea hunting man i agree. i had a guy come in work about a month ago and he said that he lived in mobile and when he comes up to northwest al to do some work. they stay a few weeks and go duck hunting here and he got my card and told me if he got to come up this year he would give me a call and take me. But that would be really nice its just i wish i had someone here to just sort of get with and kinda figure out the ropes of it.

just dont really like hunting alone....:whistling:
 

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I know what you mean. That's the very reason I'm having so much trouble leaving PA hunting camp for Southern Ohio hunting, is my good friends who happen to be good hunters. I hope you can team up with someone for next year. The pictures my son has sent here makes me want to go down and shoot a few birds. He hasn't extended an envite to his dad yet??????
 

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Hey guys, been a few weeks since i been on the site. had alot of work going on and wedding planning to do. i am a newly engaged hunter as of jan. 1st. so alot to do and so little time to be in the woods...lol. So how about i may, just may, get to make a duck trip saturday if my old roomie gets to get off the farm to go.

It was crazy. Last wednesday i had to attend his grandfathers funeral.(i worked on the farm for him about 2 yrs ago, best job i ever had.) But i lived with him when i did farm and i havent talked to him in a bout a year or so.

so anyways, i go and i get up to him and shake his hand and we chit chat a few secs. and he looks at me and says, "you dont duck hunt do you,." i almost lost my breath...lol. i said no way man dont say you do. cause they are who really got me into deer hunting. so he says yea i have all season. i went once with a friend at the first of the season and been hookes since. so, he asked me if i wanted to go this last weekend of the season just to try it and see if i like it.

so sorry for the long story but im pretty stoked and excited and its only monday....;:pickle::thumbup:

you guys wish me luck cause im gonna need it. happy hunting!!!!!
 

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Good luck, the weather should be favorable. My son and his college buddies have been shooting the heck out of the ducks and geese in southern Ohio.
 

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Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
well guys i did it. i had the most fun hunting i have ever had. Sat morning we got there before light and put out decoys and got in place. and before you could see you could hear the ducks flying by overhead and it was amazing. right at about 10 mins after daylight one of my buddies across the pond shot and i bet there were 200 ducks on the water. so saturday morning til about 8:30 we just had WWIII.... We killed 32 Saturday and 14 sunday morning. i killed the only one Sunday evening. i killed 9 overall. We couldnt get any mallards in there close enough to kill but they got a few wood ducks and some teal and the rest were blue bills.

this was their first year to hunt back there so this summer we are going to build some blinds and get some more permits to hunt different spots. Cause the guy that really has the land farms, so we got access to alot of farm land around the county. i used to farm with them a couple years back and so i know where the land is and i can use it anytime i want. so that will be great if they cant go and i dont have to wait on them to go.

But this is a wrap on hunting season here in alabama so i hope everyone enjoyed this season and i hope the next one will be better. God Bless!!!!!
 

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Well, I have deer hunted practically my entire life and duck hunted as well. I guide waterfowl hunts down here in Southeast Texas and can tell you this, before I started duck hunting at the age of 14 I always said why in the heck do I want to get up at 3 in the morning, fight the cold, tromp through the mud and water, fight the mosquitos, avoid the alligators, all for the CHANCE to POSSIBLY shoot a bird......thank you, no. But the first time I agreed to go and those birds started working the dekes at 50-70 mph, you call them and they commit and cup........ain't nothin like it. Talk about adrenalilne rushing, blood pumping, sweet Jesus which one do I shoot first exciting huntin..............man am I ready for next season. What do you want to kow about waterfowl hunting? Ill hook you up
 

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yes smackabuck, it is the most exciting thing ever. man i have only been 3 times and i am hooked like a big bass on a crankbait. i know that morning before daylight i started hearing stuff like little jets going over my head and my buddy beside me said those are ducks. wow, man it is so much fun i will be ready for this next season. this year was the first year they hunted to so they only had one hole back behind his chicken houses but next year we are goin to flood some fields and there are a few other holes around that he can get permission to. he is a farmer so they can get access to about any land around.

But as far as a question i do have one. im not a pro at calling but plan to get some dvd's or something to learn. but my question is on just blowing a single quack as well as all other calls. do you hum when you call or just blow. because i had a guy tell me one time when you are calling you hum in your throat to make it sound live. but then i feel that i hear some people just blow the call.

So i am sure i have a thousand more questions but i dont want to bombard you with them all at one time. lol... im not quitting deer hunting because this year my fiance wants to go but i will definately be on the water every chance i get. i have a buddy that comes in at work that said he will take me out to arkansas with him next year to hunt some if i wanted to... so that seems pretty fun. i just know i am hooked line and sinker. whats some good newbie info you might want to add to my basic knowledge? anything accepted.
 

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I wouldn't call it humming it is more like a light growl...forcing air from the diaphram and depending what you are trying to do has a lot to do with it as well. If they buzz you and look like they want to bail or flare out and you blow a comeback call then it aint alot of growling or humming happening still some just not as much as say a feeding call or low end close in work when you are trying to finish them off. The hail call has alot of grunting with the call but the comeback call is like a screaming plea as it were. I do say do not buy a cheap call you get what you pay for. I am not saying go out and spend $120-$130 for a call if you cant afford it but get a quality call(unfortunatley that usually means a little more money) and PRACTICE, PRACTICE, PRACTICE..Then when you are done practicing, practice some more. Get some quality duck call audio's and try to emulate what you hear. I practice constantly and hopefully get better all the time. You also need to remember that ducks have a realitvley large set of vocalizations not just the quack that we are so use to hearing. It also depends on what type of ducks that you are hunting. all ducks don't sound alike. The quack that we most readily associate with ducks is usually a mallard but they and most ducks have whistles in there vocabulary. Woodies whistle and scream and canvasbacks almost seem to growl at times. Learn your duck sounds try to emulate them with your call and learn to call to the way the ducks are reacting and I don't know if I mentioned it but practiceAlso if I were a beginner I would say buy a single reed instead of a double reed call. They are easier to blow and if it is cold or they get wet, a double reed call in a lower quailty call the reeds can stick and you will end up sounding like a sick chicken trying to play the kazoo......bad calling is a whole lot worse than no calling at all
yes smackabuck, it is the most exciting thing ever. man i have only been 3 times and i am hooked like a big bass on a crankbait. i know that morning before daylight i started hearing stuff like little jets going over my head and my buddy beside me said those are ducks. wow, man it is so much fun i will be ready for this next season. this year was the first year they hunted to so they only had one hole back behind his chicken houses but next year we are goin to flood some fields and there are a few other holes around that he can get permission to. he is a farmer so they can get access to about any land around.

But as far as a question i do have one. im not a pro at calling but plan to get some dvd's or something to learn. but my question is on just blowing a single quack as well as all other calls. do you hum when you call or just blow. because i had a guy tell me one time when you are calling you hum in your throat to make it sound live. but then i feel that i hear some people just blow the call.

So i am sure i have a thousand more questions but i dont want to bombard you with them all at one time. lol... im not quitting deer hunting because this year my fiance wants to go but i will definately be on the water every chance i get. i have a buddy that comes in at work that said he will take me out to arkansas with him next year to hunt some if i wanted to... so that seems pretty fun. i just know i am hooked line and sinker. whats some good newbie info you might want to add to my basic knowledge? anything accepted.
 

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Only a few disagreemnts here.. first you don't need a 12 gauge, a 20 gauge will do. a lot of the people that I guide use a 20 gauge with 2 3/4 shot especially in early season when the ducks are easier to bring close. 12 gauge later when you may need a little reach in pass shooting. And I have killed countless geese with 3'' double b's no need for 3 1/2's unless you are a glutton for punishment and depending where you hunt, you don't automatically need a large number of dekes, remember, sometimes less is more . Especially in late season when the birds become decoy shy or are starting to pair up for breeding sometimes all you need is 1/2 dozen drake/hen pairs and a few drakes for bachelor groups on the fringes...big water....big spread, it's just easier for the birds to see. Litttle water smaller spreads can be just as effective, sometimes more so. just set them up right and give the birds a place to land into the wind.....Hunting Man made a VERY GOOD AND VERY IMPORTANT POINT....NEVER HUNT ALONE IN THE WATER AND ALWAYS LET SOMEONE KNOW WHERE YOU WILL BE. If you do have a boat and you are gonna hunt from it...camo it up, and pm me for details but I have boat blind plans that can be built for under $200 instead of buying one for $300-$600 If you are going to just use the boat to get to where you are going to hunt, hide the boat well and remember, this is very important, hide your face , you will spend most of your time staring upward and very few things shine in the wilds like a human face in the midst of a bunch of camoflauge

I grew up duck hunting on the marshes & farm fields in NW Ohio. My son now hunts duck, geese, and deer. The cost issue is what you make it, how many decoys do you need, more is better. If hunting water then a boat/motor painted camo will be needed. Never hunt solo when hunting water, too many things can and do go wrong. Try to find someone experienced in decoy set-up and proper calling it takes years of practice to do it well. Shotgun 12 ga, at least 3", many are going to 3.5" for geese. Small streams can be hunted from a canoe and a few decoys say 1 doz. Big water hunting and 6 doz decoys would be needed and a good boat. I don't think duck hunting or anything else would replace deer hunting but too many sports may replace the other half and that might be a bad thing.
 

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yea, i am going to get a few calls over time and i thought about buying a dvd or cd that i can practice from. i have a good ear and i play music so i figured it would be alot easier for me to hear and mimic that. and i am trying to study up on what duck does what and all that. one thing that i dont understand is how you know what duck is what when the come near. which i know it will take alot of practice in the water but the few days i went i just remember it all being so fast. but, i will learn soon enough. i dont think we are going to build a boat blind but we are going to build us a stationary blind in one of the ponds. and i know that my buddy is talking about flooding some other fields so we can have a few more places to hunt.

what is a good dvd you would recommend on learning just techniques, tips, and anything else, to watch and get some ideas on stuff. i know the last day for us i got stuck in a blind with my other friend. Now remember i havent seen these guys in a year or so. and i used to farm with them so it just so happened i start hangin out wiht them again on the last week of duck season. but pricie, the one that owns the farm, he is married now and settled down alot. So anyways, i get stuck in the blind with Heath, Pricies bro-in-law, and hes one of them that thinks since he has hunted most of the season with them that he knows it all. So his calling is horrible, and i mean not that he cant call but that he calls with like weird cadences. And its funny in a way because im thinking man the birds are laughing at us... something like.... quack...quack...quack,quaCK,QUACK!!! the the last three quacks escalating. and my question is, do i need to kind of steer away from being in the blind with somebody that isnt going to get the job done. Which i will say i killed the only 2 birds that day but i was calling then. and i dont know how to really call, i just hit a comeback on one and the other i just kind of guided them in with single quacks.

And also, i have a golden that is almost 4 months now and he is going to be my little hunting buddy. But i know this is your opinion versus mine. But that im aware of, he is not a hunting bred dog. So would you suggest using a dog that has been bred for hunting or can you teach a dog enough to get the job done. i mean i have been working with him on obedience since i got him. But im goin to take him to a obedience class one of my buddies does and get him started. now thats just for me, you know like just learning not to tear the house up, or come when i call. But i have another friend that used to train duck dogs during the summer he was in college and he said he would work him with me. But again, i was just wandeing because some ppl wont use a dog if its not like top notch or something.

Sorry for the long thread, just taking in the info man. thanks for all your help and interest.
 

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Now the only reason that I am "quoting" you is so I can refer back to what all you are asking, okay disclaimer taken care of so let's get down to giving you some feedback. I am not talking badly of your buddy. In my humble opinion the worst thing you can do is call badly. period.It sounds like you said that he makes his calls in an ascending note fashion and the opposite is whathe needs to do. I would suggest going to youtube and type something like "haydell duck calls". There are some good videos on there from the man who makes haydells calls about how to do a basic quack, a greeting or hail call, a plead call, and two different feeding calls (flying and on the water) I personally call just like he does, meaning by using the same words and sounds while I'm calling. I don't like haydels calls but they are good videos. Also go to jbcustomcalls.com and listen to his sound clips. That is who makes all of my calls for me, one at a time as I ask for them. His sound clips will give you an awesome ear for what great calling sounds like. You can also go to carlson championship calls and he has a good package that has a basic call and an instructional dvd for less than $50 that is also very good. Or, you can go to ducks unlimited website and look at their duck identification link from there home page and the have recordings from in the wild of different ducks species. any or all of that should get you started very well,
Now for identifying ducks.......very tricky, it takes a lot of time and trial and error but you can get started by visiting delta waterfowl's website and taking some of thier quizzes on duck identification. drakes and hens are pretty easily to differentiate between, at least until you are talking about gadwalls and wigeon, they can be difficult to the untrained eye because they do look so similar. Unlike say a mallard who drake has the green head and the hen is light brown. Very easy to tell the difference. Duck identification is very important since, say on a canvasback, down here you are only allowed one a day and you don't want to make a mistake and shoot ttwo of them for it is a hefty fine. on the other hand we can only shoot one mallard hen a day and they look alot like other hens especially at 60 mph. I try to stay away from hens for the most part simply because dead hens don't lay eggs!!! and it is easier to identify drakes anyway.
now for your dog, goldens are good dogs. I prefer labs or chessies but since you have a golden, use him, don't give up on him. Goldens have a natural desire to hunt and retrieve. That is what they were originally bred for and the desire is there, you just have to bring it out. Chessies are in your face hardcore waterdogs that hunt to hunt. Labs and goldens hunt to please there master. I actually have a copy of the WOLTER'S WATERDOG dvd (2nd edition) that I payed $30 for that I will sale you for $25 if you are interested. It is a good video directed at labs but also works very well for goldens. I have used it and refer back to it for more advanced traing of my dogs. I also use a couple of dvd's from Jean Smith...old but very good training that she promotes for labs and goldens but will work for any dog. Her website is www.retrievertrainingcourse.com you can order her 2 dvd's for $55 and she will email you a bunch of info you can print, put in a binder, and take to the field with you. Hope all this helps and don't hesitate to ask more questions. You can email me directly at [email protected] or call me at 281-839-5680
yea, i am going to get a few calls over time and i thought about buying a dvd or cd that i can practice from. i have a good ear and i play music so i figured it would be alot easier for me to hear and mimic that. and i am trying to study up on what duck does what and all that. one thing that i dont understand is how you know what duck is what when the come near. which i know it will take alot of practice in the water but the few days i went i just remember it all being so fast. but, i will learn soon enough. i dont think we are going to build a boat blind but we are going to build us a stationary blind in one of the ponds. and i know that my buddy is talking about flooding some other fields so we can have a few more places to hunt.

what is a good dvd you would recommend on learning just techniques, tips, and anything else, to watch and get some ideas on stuff. i know the last day for us i got stuck in a blind with my other friend. Now remember i havent seen these guys in a year or so. and i used to farm with them so it just so happened i start hangin out wiht them again on the last week of duck season. but pricie, the one that owns the farm, he is married now and settled down alot. So anyways, i get stuck in the blind with Heath, Pricies bro-in-law, and hes one of them that thinks since he has hunted most of the season with them that he knows it all. So his calling is horrible, and i mean not that he cant call but that he calls with like weird cadences. And its funny in a way because im thinking man the birds are laughing at us... something like.... quack...quack...quack,quaCK,QUACK!!! the the last three quacks escalating. and my question is, do i need to kind of steer away from being in the blind with somebody that isnt going to get the job done. Which i will say i killed the only 2 birds that day but i was calling then. and i dont know how to really call, i just hit a comeback on one and the other i just kind of guided them in with single quacks.

And also, i have a golden that is almost 4 months now and he is going to be my little hunting buddy. But i know this is your opinion versus mine. But that im aware of, he is not a hunting bred dog. So would you suggest using a dog that has been bred for hunting or can you teach a dog enough to get the job done. i mean i have been working with him on obedience since i got him. But im goin to take him to a obedience class one of my buddies does and get him started. now thats just for me, you know like just learning not to tear the house up, or come when i call. But i have another friend that used to train duck dogs during the summer he was in college and he said he would work him with me. But again, i was just wandeing because some ppl wont use a dog if its not like top notch or something.

Sorry for the long thread, just taking in the info man. thanks for all your help and interest.
 
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