Friday, September 21, 2012

Waterfowl Season Opens Tomorrow!

Duck and goose season opens tomorrow in North Dakota and we are pumped to get out in the fields once again.  This year the waterfowl population is way up and the water is way down.  The birds should be more concentrated this season. 

While you are out hunting this fall, try these 10 tips on duck calling:

1. Not All Ducks Are Callable - Don’t get down if every flock of ducks doesn’t respond to your calling. Remember, not all ducks are callable. If the ducks appear to know where they are going odds are they will not respond to your calling. Signs of callable ducks are fluttering wing beats and ducks working a large area, not flying straight line.

2. Don’t Over Call - If the ducks are doing what you want them to do why keep calling? In most cases over calling results in ducks skirting your decoys as the un-needed calling will help the ducks zero in on your blind and find something that doesn't look right. There are a few exceptions to this rule.

3. Start Soft And Work Up - When first starting to call at a group of ducks begin with softer calls. If the ducks don't respond work towards more loud aggressive calling. Many duck hunters will start off too loud or aggressive and often spook ducks, especially educated ducks.

4. Choose Your Leader - When more than one person is calling in your group choose who will be the leader and have the others fill in. This way your group of hunters won’t accidentally end up overcalling at a flock of ducks. Examples of fill in calls are quacks, feed calls, and soft greeting calls.

5. Forgotten Drake Mallard Whistle - Many hunters forget the drake mallard whistle call. This is a great call filler call and something different for more educated call-shy ducks. This is also an easy call for kids to blow with the extra bonus with them feeling included with you or the group of others calling also.

6. Match Your Call To The Species - When possible use a duck call that matches the species you’re calling at, meaning that you want to speak their language. Although gadwall and pintail will some what respond to a mallard call you will most often get better results if you call at pintails with a pintail whistle, or use a gadwall call for when calling at gadwalls.

7. Keep The Ducks On A String - As soon as you notice approaching duck/ducks drifting off line from your setup hit them with a greeting call to get them back online. If this doesn’t work hit them with a comeback call. By starting with greeting, and then working up to a comeback call you won't start out to aggressive.

8. When There's Nothing To Lose - If the ducks look like there going to land short of your spread or just aren't responding to your calling get louder and more aggressive. At this point you don’t have anything to lose.

9. Never Call At Ducks Right Above You - When calling ducks that are working your decoys never call at them when they are right above your blind. Your calling will help them pinpoint your position and almost every time they will leave your setup.

10. Call At Their Wingtips - This is common term that simply means if the ducks are coming right at you why call? But if you can see their wingtips their not doing what you want them to do so then call.