Waterfowl Hunting Articles

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Ways to Scout for Waterfowl When You Can't Be in the Field

There’s no substitute for in-field scouting. Keeping tabs on waterfowl movements and knowing exactly where to be each time you hunt is more than half the battle of being successful. But jobs, families and other obligations prevent most people from hunting every day or driving around each evening to locate...


Shoot More Mallards

From Minnesota to Louisiana, most duck hunters want mallards. Oh, they don’t mind other ducks. In fact, they welcome swift teal, eager gadwall and twisting, turning divers. But if you polled everyone with a duck stamp, a clear top duck would soon emerge: Anas platyrhynchos , the mallard. Degree of...


4 Ducks: Public-Land Opening Day in Arkansas

Without abundant access to private property, like many other public-land duck hunters , Dennis Loosier and Billy Campbell spend most of their waterfowl season scouting and searching for mallards. Never is that more evident before opening day in Arkansas. And that's what this original film from Realtree Timber illustrates. Many...


Your Ideal Waterfowling Shotgun: Finding and Using It

Some folks can grab any shotgun off the rack and run 25 straight at skeet or pile up four greenheads . The rest of us mortals, however, must take a longer path. That is, we must find a shotgun that optimizes our shooting skills and then use it enough so...


Waterfowl Road Trip Checklist

Dry cornfields in North Dakota? Maybe some green-timber hunting on one of Arkansas’ famed wildlife management areas? Canada, perhaps? Yep, when it comes to duck hunting , you have a world of great choices scattered throughout North America. Getting to those dream destinations? Road trip! Don’t plan on stocking up...


Hunting Puddles for Puddle Ducks

The puddle didn’t look promising. It was maybe 50 feet by 150 feet, a rough oval. The water looked like chocolate milk, and it was no deeper than a kiddie pool. It was at the northern edge of a large harvested soybean field, hard against a flooded, brushy ditch that...


7 Tips for Hunting the Late Greenhead Show

Long gone are the fair-weather hunters. They Who Only Hunt Early are home sitting by a cozy fire, reading a good duck hunting book and dreaming of blue skies and sort-of-green-headed ducks gliding into serene blocks. But you are a late-season fanatic. Yes, you were out there with the bluebird-day...


Score Waterfowling Wins on Public Land

On public land , just about everything works against you. There are more hunters and more pressure, and typically less good habitat. The way other folks hunt can dictate your success, and you’re darn sure going to sweat for ducks . But that’s all many of us have. Sure, there...


How to Choose a Waterfowl Guide

Many waterfowlers hire guides at times, and it’s easy to see why. Outfitters can provide expert instruction and great places to hunt, and they might be your best option for a bucket-list trip. But hiring a guide can be daunting, leaving your head spinning about the best choice, what to...


The Scoop on Spoonbills

“Aw, it’s just a spoonie.” How often have you heard that when a hunting partner picks up a duck or accepts one from an excited retriever, and that duck in hand turns out to be a northern shoveler? Perhaps you’ve even uttered and muttered similar words. Maybe it’s the big,...


Semi-Auto Waterfowling Shotguns: Today's Reliable Choice

For years, many waterfowl and upland-bird hunting rituals were passed down through generations. Fathers gave decoys to their sons. Old-timers bequeathed wool hunting coats to grandchildren. And season after season, semi-automatic shotguns would jam in the field — likely at the worst possible moments. Even some all-time great auto-loaders sometimes...


7 Reasons Public Waterfowl Hunting is Better than You Think

So you think hunting for ducks and geese on public-access areas sucks because those spots are overhunted and overcrowded, and you end up in calling duels with sky-busting neighboring hunters who are always out of their blind peeing when birds are trying to come in? Let me tell you why...


Woods Waterfowl: How to Scout Green Timber

Green timber : Just the mention of it conjures images back-flapping mallards, cypress breaks and calls echoing through the flooded hardwoods. Waterfowl hunters who see that on video or listen to stories of dozens of mallards dropping into a hole are inspired to take up the torch and see the...


Waterfowling Perfection: Green Timber and Greenheads

Here’s what’s true: Duck hunting in flooded woods is the ultimate waterfowling experience. For those of us lucky enough to have grown up surrounded by it, nothing else measures up. Flooded-timber hunting is mostly a sport of the southern Mississippi Flyway , because that’s where most of the flood-prone bottomland...


Why You Should Hunt Mallards from 1 to 3

It was the final 10 days of a pretty dang good duck season , most of which was spent on Illinois public-land. One thing hunting public will teach you is to stay humble (and work your butt off to kill a few ringnecks and wood ducks). But what it never...


A Delta Specklebelly Primer

It was early January in the Delta, and we were on total lockdown. A weeklong cold front had pushed in and frozen rice fields top to bottom. Our attempts to open water resulted in frozen spigot heads and dead batteries on ice eaters, which wound up keeping enough water open...


5 Ways to Miss More Ducks, Guaranteed

Editor's note: This article originally appeared Sept. 30, 2015, on Realtree.com. Even the sharpest wing-shooters don’t go 100 percent in the marsh. But if you want to fling box upon box of steel skyward to kill only one or two ducks , follow these instructions. Don't Prepare Yourself Some folks...


Anatomy of a Perfect Duck Boat

Duck boats and pornography came up in conversation the other day but not in the way you’re thinking. I was trying to describe what I thought the perfect duck hunting boat would look like, including the features and equipment it would have, and it boiled down to what U.S. Supreme...


5 Times Duck and Goose Calling Really Shines

In some duck and goose hunting situations, calling doesn’t matter. For example, few diver hunters carry a call, as divers tend to be less vocal than most puddle-duck species. And when birds have been pressured heavily, they sometimes learn to avoid even our most plaintive renditions of a lonely Susie...


What They Learned: Experts Share Wisdom From the Marsh

Some of life’s most valuable lessons are learned through experience. Hunting is no different. Just ask any waterfowl hunter with a few years under his belt. On second thought, don’t bother. We did that for you. Here’s what four veteran hunters have learned from spending much of their lives in...


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