Finishing Puddlers

Duck Hunting for puddlers like Mallards, Sprig (Pintails), Black ducks, Widgeons, Woodducks, Teal, and other ducks.

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Finishing Puddlers

Postby Blackdogs » Thu Jun 22, 2006 10:53 am

How do I successfully "finish" ducks that are swinging out of range??? I can't blow the chuckle/feeding call for crap so that is pretty much out. What other calls could I do to get them to commit???
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Postby goosehunter64 » Thu Jun 22, 2006 12:17 pm

Hard to say...I'm not there. From what you're telling us....or what you're not telling us is....are you guys concealed well enough, are the decoys set properly, is there movement in the blind....is the limited ability to call spooking them???
First...right now...get a good cd on how to duck and goose call....and practise....practise with a purpose...not just to toot on your call and makes "like" sounds. You want to duplicate what the birds are saying...when they say it...and how they say it.
Most of this comes from years of experience in the field...watching and studing the birds.
This all may sound a little harsh.....but it's the truth and what needs to be accoplished to finish birds. There are many days when a seasoned caller still can't...but there are many more than a non-seasoned caller.

One last tip. Try using a 6-in1 whistle. Make either drake mallard calls...and call at their tips and tails.....or also a widgeon call.
Teal and pintail calls work as well also.
Good luck and I hope this helps.
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Postby Smackaduck » Thu Jun 22, 2006 7:46 pm

goosehunter64 wrote:One last tip. Try using a whistle.:thumbsup:
If they're dumb enough to be lured in by plastic you're really just doing them a favor.

Know your target before you pull the trigger.

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Postby THIN MAN » Thu Jun 22, 2006 8:02 pm

As goosehunter 64 is saying, there is much more to it than calling. Concealment is parimount. Also clean well kept decoys is key. If you hid well and your spread is realistic, you shouldn't have to do a ton of calling. I would use more single note quacks and clucks and not worry about that chuckle when they get in close. As stated above a whistle is a very handy tool. I've finished many ducks with a drake grunt. :thumbsup:
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Postby Blackdogs » Fri Jun 23, 2006 6:56 am

Ok, so what is the difference between and cluck and a quack and a drake grunt????
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Postby duckbuster06 » Fri Jun 23, 2006 8:27 am

A cluck is a hen note and is made my simply saying or repeating tick and tock into the call (tick-tick tick-tick-tock). The quack is a single note on the duck call. A drake grunt is almost hummed into the whistle using a bass note. Hope this helps! Buck Gardner makes an awesome CD that goes through all of these things in detail. That's how I learned to call. :thumbsup:
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Postby Blackdogs » Fri Jun 23, 2006 8:35 am

So am I confusin the chuckle with the cluck, cause what you are describing sounds a lot like the chuckle??? What kind of cadence do you do with the "cluck"
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Postby side-slippin » Fri Jun 23, 2006 1:18 pm

im not trying to be rude, but it sounds like you arent to experienced(maybe im wrong), but if your just getting into the sport, buy a couple of cd's/dvd's and they will help you become a better caller, or at least let you hear how and when you use different calls. you can also do some research on the web and find some sites that will help you out.


hear is one i found in a couple of minutes. hope it helps, plus there are plenty of other sites out there that would help im sure.

http://www.dccl.org/information/ducks/callingducks.htm
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Postby Blackdogs » Fri Jun 23, 2006 1:35 pm

Its not that I don't have experience. Just not much in the world of calling. I've done most of my duck hunting while pass-shooting out in the marsh. Listening to all the idiots blow their calls!!! There are some beauties out there!!!!

Anyway, just this last year I bought a boat and some decoys and went out a few times with some limited success.

I should say I mainly goose hunt(fields). I have been bird hunting for well, this year will be my 16th year.(I'll be 27 next week) I have spent 99% of my falls chasing geese and deer and only a couple days a year chasing ducks. So I apologize if I seem over eager and am asking too many questions.
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Postby randy marci » Fri Jun 23, 2006 2:28 pm

to get them to finish turn off your spinner :umm: seriously, calling is about the third biggest thing you need to worry about. first is location, and then your hide, then calling them to the spread you have set correctly. get yourself some help type cd's or dvd's. do not get hnunting videos to try and help you. these videos are normally shot during less than typical duck hunting conditions. they favor gettin good camera shots, which usually means high dollar private spots and under-educated birds.
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Postby THIN MAN » Fri Jun 23, 2006 4:52 pm

Like all have said, the best thing to do is buy a instructional cd or dvd. Get one that specifies for a single reed or both single and double not just for double reed calls. The single instruction will carry over on both calls. If you really want to learn this skill be patiant. It will not happen over nite. Just learning to operate a call properly takes much practice. I am not a world champion caller by no means nor do i have a desire to enter contest at this time. But I still practice DAILY!! Day in and day out the better you are the more chances you"ll get.

If you need to ask alot of questions... ask! I did.
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Postby duckaholic41 » Sun Jun 25, 2006 10:48 am

You dont seem to eager to me, you just want more ducks. I've been hunting from the time I could hold up a gun and I still learn sumthing new every time I go out. No questions are bad questions. Go to the site sideslippin put up its a good one.Dont try to over do the feeding call, and there is a difference . feedin ducks ussually feed in water less then 12 inches and and its a tick tick ticka .tick tick,ticka thats its then the other faster you here every one doing is heard when there flying over you low and not alarmd and if you licten close you will here light quacks. find a easy blowing call. buy tapes or cd and listen and blow while your drivin, and dont worry about the looks you get from the guy in the car next to u. hes probly from france :toofunny: :salude:
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Postby whitefeather » Sun Jun 25, 2006 11:05 am

I hunt a public hunting area near a national wildlife reguge and you hear people highballing at ducks nonstop. I have been calling ducks for 30 plus years and can tell you that there are times when you just need to shut up. Sometimes later in the year when the ducks start getting a little shy to the call, i often break out the mallard grunt call to finish them. It was mentioned by a couple of people on here as a viable option, and it most definetly is. The difference between a quack and a grunt is the difference between you saying "HEY!" and "hello." A grunt call takes about 2 minutes to learn how to blow and is very subtle. It is an effective call with in a hundred yards. Have you ever heard a drake mallard swimming on a park pond making that low key, mellow, "I am quite content eating bread that you are throwing me" sound? When the ducks are getting pounded and I see that 4 times around the spread at 100 yards approach, I will shut up and finished on their next approach armed with a subtle grunt. I'd say that it works more times than not.
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Postby Gooseboy » Sun Jun 25, 2006 11:07 am

Maybe your calling is scaring them? Sometimes its better too call very little. Just a couple quacks.

Also you dont have to do an extremely fast chuckle like you hear the pros do it. Just say ticka ticka ticka, or ticka tooka tacka. Maybe kiddy kiddy kiddy is easier for you. I just do quick 1-2 second burst of chuckling.

This site should help you.

http://www.ducks.org/Hunting/DuckCallin ... aster.html

The only calls i use are the basic quack. Chuckle. And when birds are not coming in or they are flying off i will usually go

Quaaaaack
Quaaaack
Quaaack
Quaack
Quack

With each quack held out longer to make it seem like your begging them to come in

or the same thing but dont hold the notes out as long so your demanding them to come in.
The group ended up with 420 birds.

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Postby Swamp Puppy » Sun Jun 25, 2006 1:57 pm

lots of emphasis on calling here...and maybe that is or isn't the problem. hard to say without being in the blind and seeing what's happening.

let me toss out some "other" ideas.

1) CONCEALMENT- already mentioned, and i'll wager this is your problem. you need to be COMPLETELY hidden and STILL. remember, ducks are looking down on you from above, you can have great forward cover, but if they can see into your blind you might as well be sitting naked on a sandbar. if having a top on the blind is unrealistic (i don't use one) then at least get some branches or something to breakup what the duck sees. i like building blinds with very tall sides and fronts..then have some "thinner" spots for shooting lanes. DO NOT MOVE. motion will kill ya. period..end of statement. this includes picking up guns when ducks are working...putting down your sandwich, coffee, playboy, etc.etc. dogs shuffling around..it's all bad. also, resist the urge to stare at working ducks. don't look up at them as they fly over or spin your head around to see them behind you. at the very least just have one guy do the looking and the others keep their heads DOWN.

2) SETUP - maybe you are set up wrong for the area you are hunting. try moving the dekes to accomodate the way the birds are approaching to get them to "finish". ducks are like people...we like to pull into a place and park. we hate to have to drive around looking for a spot..and if it becomes too much of a hassle we just leave and go park someplace else. try to keep your spread set up so ducks don't have to fly over the dekes to land. most won't do it...they "bounce" up and circle a few times...then fly off.

3) BLIND LOCATION - i attended a seminar given by Jim Ronquist from RNT calls. while this seems like an obvious bit of information..it has changed the way i hunt ducks and more than doubled my success. not to mention i shoot practically ALL my ducks "feet down" inside of 20 yards.

he said,

find the local flyways for ducks..areas where they feed, rest, move to for cover..etc.etc. there are 3 places you can hunt ducks:

1-where they want to be (where they are already going)..this is easy. the ducks are coming here anyway. all you need to do is sit there..shut up..be still..and not screw anything up. limits. easy.

2-where they don't mind going..maybe there weren't going to where you are, but it is just as good and with a little help (decent decoy spread, some good cover, and a bit of calling) they will pile on in.

3-where they don't want to be..it may look "ducky"..and you may get some action, but most likely you are in for a looong day.

so, do your scouting and go where the ducks are.


following the above 3 steps (Be where the Ducks are going, proper concealment, and a good setup that works with the area) we can shoot out a 2 person puddler limit (14 bids) and be home for lunch without ever touching a call. we do call..because we can, it's fun, and we know what we're doing, but we don't NEED to.

good luck..and go get 'em!!! :salude:
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Postby duckaholic41 » Sun Jun 25, 2006 5:55 pm

No way man you take a playboy with you. I prefer pent house myself :toofunny:
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Postby Swamp Puppy » Sun Jun 25, 2006 6:16 pm

any of the magazines work..though i usually don't read them myself..they are more to keep my blindmates pre-ccupied so i can shoot more ducks. lol.

but that is a different lesson.."Swamp Puppy's Advanced Guide to Killing More Ducks." :thumbsup:

it includes great tips such as getting blindmates so drunk they pass out..only to wake up to a blind full of limits. hiding the toilet paper thus forcing your blindmate to boat/hike miles and miles back the truck/boatramp only to return to me packing up with "our" birds... the list goes on and on. :laughing:
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Postby duckaholic41 » Sun Jun 25, 2006 6:35 pm

Your pretty kool man. Have you ever tried dropping a little eye drops in there coffe. , ya know cuz when there away the ducks fly better teeheeheehahahaha ohhohohoh God thats funny I dont care who ya r thats funny rite there :toofunny:
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Postby Swamp Puppy » Sun Jun 25, 2006 7:01 pm

that works pretty good too....lol.
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Postby duckaholic41 » Sun Jun 25, 2006 7:14 pm

I know sumone will get me back sum day Im a prankster, thats why I only wear waste high waders just in case :thumbsup:
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Postby duckaholic41 » Sun Jun 25, 2006 7:17 pm

one of my buddys fell asleep in the blind one day and I took my dc camo paint and wrote I like boys on his fore head and i couldnt look at him strait all day He never new till he got back to the truck, Oh yah Im a pretty fast runner :toofunny:
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Postby goosehunter64 » Sun Jun 25, 2006 7:34 pm

duckaholic41 wrote:one of my buddys fell asleep in the blind one day and I took my dc camo paint and wrote I like boys on his fore head and i couldnt look at him strait all day He never new till he got back to the truck, Oh yah Im a pretty fast runner :toofunny:

:toofunny: :toofunny: :toofunny:
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