Waterfowl Opener

Discussion in 'Cast & Blast' started by xdog, Nov 1, 2009.

  1. I havent hunted opening day for many years, I sure did enjoy this years there were lots of cooperative ducks. We finished with 10 Mallards, 2 Wood ducks, 1 Wigeon, 1 Pintail and 3 bonus Coots.

    Good times,

  2. nice work. you guys sure put out the spread for the opener. WOW
  3. Ya no joke! thats like the almighty spread geesh pickin all those up would be the biggest pain in the a$$ ha nice job!
  4. Ha! I think you can only see about half the spread in the background of this photo. You should see a late season spread. I like decoys, a lot and I especially like lots of decoys, they seem to make me a better caller!

    Tight lines and smoking barrells regards,

  5. HAHAHA WOW thats insane! i've got a buddy that hunts in the hood canal where i hunt and he puts out around 100 decoys, takes him about 20 minutes to do it and double that to pick them up ha, he has them all on the "chain gang" line so its easier to pick up ha but thats awesome! we need to get a get together for some killer duck hunting going!
  6. Congrats on a great opening day. There seem to be an unusual number of birds in the area for this time of year. They don't seem to be all locals either.

    As for spreads, I really like the variation in yours. It's amazing how many people use the same arrangement day after day and then comment on decoy-shy birds. One of my hunting partners and I are going to wait for the right day and we're putting every duck decoy we've got (300+) out in one spread. It's take a couple of hours but who sleeps well the night before going hunting anyway? We figure it'll look like a refuge.
  7. Nice birds. When I lived in Skagit County, I hunted the Skagit Wildlife Area near Conway a lot. I did my first two hunts on Friday and Saturday in about 7 years. I had a great time. We didn't hunt over lots of birds but they wanted in where we were hunting real bad. We took very selective shots on drake mallards at close range. Makes me wonder why I didn't hunt all those years? :hmmm:
  8. Coots, yum? fog gras, duck liver is yummy
  9. How ya doing Dave? If your avatar are your kids your cool.
  10. one question about the amount of decoys... why?
  11. Because it's fun...besides when we get done, not matter how many we put out, we want it to look like a bunch of ducks and not a bunch of decoys.:) It's kind of like painting a picture.

    Xdog is using at least three different types of decoys and has them arranged like a bunch of birds loafing in a shallow pond. It really looks neat but I would love to see the entire spread.
  12. Ummm..... well lets see how about because ducks are gregarious, ducks prescribe to safety in numbers, hopefully ducks see at least one thing they like, hopefully ducks are busy looking at the decoys and not the blind, more decoys justify me doing more calling, multi species appeal that spread had Teal, Wigeon, Wood Duck, Pintail, Mallard, Blue Heron and Canada Goose decoys, confidence decoys I think the Goose decoys add to ducks confidence as well as Duck decoys adding to Geese confidence, I like decoys, I have fun making decoys spreads, cause I had a new hunter that hasnt been on many waterfowl hunts and I wanted a successful hunt, cause I had time to kill, cause it was sensible to get the decoys deployed for the first time to see if there were anything that needed work or repair, cause I was expecting two to maybe four more shooters and more shooters equals more decoys for all the above reasons, cause some of those shooters are quite experienced and like it or not they were going to be at some level judging my spread, blind and calling, cause the more decoys I use the more I feel I "need" to buy, likely a macho my spread is bigger than your spread underlying compulsion, cause often he has the most stools in a public area wins, cause more decoys are visble from farther away, cause I got um why not deploy um, cause I like to watch them bobble and swim to and fro in the wind, cause I love to make a science of if we change or move these few decoys the birds will finish better and sometimes maybe even most times I was right and that not only ups the success it helps make me a better hunter and helped me just a little tiny bit think llike a duck which more importantly helps me be a better hunter tommorow, cause its fun trying to guesstimate when to change the spread so you dont get busted by birds which you usually do, cause I enjoy bargaining and debating the merits of altering the spread with veteran hunters that say no and no again the spread is fine the way it is, cause its fun to watch a green dog learn how to find a downed bird in the middle of a big pile of blocks, cause nothing looks cooler than when its really cold to put out a huge bunch of tightly huddled decoys that no cold duck could say no to, cause making a big spread look natural and inviting based on location and weather is a art not a science, cause to me its part of hunting such that we might limit on birds in an hour but by god were assured the hunt will last at least two to four hours including the deploying and remitting of a decent spread, cause big spreads allow many possiblities seperate species, mix species, bright decoys in or outside, bunch em, spread em out, oh the possiblities!, cause I like it when other hunters swing by and watch thier eyes widen and jaws drop, maybe cause when I was young I hunted public land with decoys on my back and more decoys were always best and now with boats more decoys allow me to fix my childhood issues I must bear, cause I like having to decide what spread to bring and what must be left at home, cause I like to rotate spreads mixed species today, all Mallards, all geese or maybe a all Coot spread next time, heck I have a 4 dozen all Merganser spread I have yet to be able to use and its killing me, cause i like to try out different brands, lines, sinkers, and keepers to see what I like best, because I like the variety of different brands and poses and movements of decoys, cause want to build my own decoys and I am trying to find and use the best of every decoys quality, cause it was wicked awesome fun to let two young dogs run and splash in the shallow water for the hour or more it took to pick up the spread, cause looking over a big spread and consider what decoys I am potentially lacking and therefore "must' soon buy, cause I have hunted lots over every kind of spread you can imagine from zero decoys to several thousand and I love that they all work but lets try something a lil different next time, cause I love watching a Mallard hen we aint gonna shoot hovering around the spread looking here and there and over there and here and back there and over there and here and argh sitting down finally and then feeling so secure she stays through several volleys not quite understanding what ills are befalling her commarades and where those dogs are taking them, cause I like taking a nap on a slow day waking up to see if there are birds in the spread and it requiring several minutes to do so and sometimes not seeing birds hidden in there, cause I like having a couple of other good callers in the blind and making lots of noise that not only sounds natural but it also "looks" natural, cause I like when people walk into my storage in July and they say "Oh my God!" what do you do with all these decoys and I can just smile and say look around back and in the boat this is just the start, cause I like the feel of the pull of a decoy strap on my shoulder and the clank and grinds sounds of the decoys resettling, cause I like that it seems like on every single hunt the decoy lines are set at just the wrong length and have to be reset, cause I like it when my hunting buddies say come on thats enough decoys and I just smile and ignore them, cause I love it when some bird quicksters set into the blocks before you can or want to call the shot cause there was more birds coming and having gunners stand up and not be able to find the birds in the blocks, cause I like it when those same just aforementioned birds play frozen statue as not to move first like thier fake bretheran, cause I like to be able to hardazz somebody for sluicing one or more decoys but knowing it really dosent matter cause we got lots, cause a big spread means I can make if I want one, two, three, four or even more landing zones, cause a big spread means I dont need to use no spinners, flappers or electronic decoys, cause I like picking up a dog with a cripple in the middle of the Columbia from a half mile away and being able to look back and see at least a couple of decoys where I know there are hundreds, cause a big spread means I can try something different on one side or a corner and if the birds like it great but if they dont the rest of the spread still works just fine, cause I like finding lost decoys and short of returning them to thier owner adding them to my spread, cause I like being able to let three four or five decoys blow away out of the spread and being able to sacrafice them because the hunting is too hot to pick them up and knowing they will end up in some one elses spread, cause maybe if nothing else if its a slow day I can at least sit back and enjoy a pretty looking set no different than enjoying a painting or a mural on a wall and knowing tommorows hunt brings forth a fresh canvas that gifts me with the opportunity to paint another big layout that just might work a little better, maybe.

    Tight lines gentlemen,

  13. Nice looking spreads Karl, ther is a real art to painting a good picture with fewer decoys. Well done!

  14. Good question JW. i used to hunt big spreads too but i have more fun hunting than i do picking up decoys, so now i hunt with 2 doz. there are conditions that will dictate a big spread but most of the time in the early season there is no need. plus i like to save the spreads that take a lot of work for when i actually need them on educated ducks later in the season.
  15. What an answer! :)

    One problem I have found with trying to make a big spread look alive when there is no wind.
  16. JW: good question you asked. It seems it stimulated quite a response. I am reminded of an economics teacher in my former high school who awarded grades by the amount of written material submitted on essay exams.

    Xdog: A+++++++++++

    I did skim your post and am pretty sure you covered everything. Did you include: "Because I like it when people ask me why I'm using so many decoys?" If it's in your comment I apologize for missing it.

    Have you ever had the experience of putting out or picking up decoys and a salmon swims into your leg?

    REALLY unnerving.

  17. Yes I have had Salmon ram me while in Samish Bay. I also have had deer, beaver, otter, and snakes swim through a spread. I found the Seals and especially Sea Lions in the decoys even more so unnerving though they didnt swim into me.

  18. How about this one? 1973-1975: Early teal season, south Louisiana, temperatures in the 7o0's and 80's: alligators and water moccasins in the decoys. You've got to love duck hunting to want to hunt in those conditions.

    There were tons of blue wing teal... Can't use the dog obviously. Just wade out and pick up the birds before the gators get them. Gators didn't worry me too much. It was those damn snakes. I could shoot them when they were on top of the water but they can swim and bite under the water, which was pretty muddy most of the time. We lost a couple of cripples that headed down current and out of sight. I wouldn't follow through the tall grass, no siree Bob, not this good ol' boy. Maybe that's why the salmon running into me now bothers me so much. Flashbacks...

    The mosquitos were unbelievable. Some were bigger than the teal. Got sunburned, too.

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