So, I fell in love with duck hunting several years ago, but for reasons I won't go into, I now have no places to go hunt, no calls, and virtually no experience. The only things I do have, are my shotgun, and a dozen mallard decoys. Now, I don't have much money at the moment, so getting more decoys is pretty much out of the picture, I could maybe afford 1 decoy by hunting season, and I wish I was exaggerating. Also, I'm painfully aware that with my lack of experience, calling is probably going to do more to scare the birds away then bring them in this season. Anyway, on to what I'm asking for, though any general advice is more than welcome.
I live in Potsdam NY, and I'm looking for a place within 30 minutes if possible, but definitely no further than an hour. I do have a boat I could use if I need it, but I'd prefer somewhere shallow enough to retrieve with waders. I have no dog, btw.
I would like a call or two this season, if for no other reason than to get some experience calling and seeing the bird's reactions(like I said, I don't expect to have any success calling this season, but the sooner I make my mistakes the sooner I can learn from them). So, considering that my decoys are for mallards, I imagine a mallard decoy would be best, but I don't know what brand or type of call to look for. Also, in the past I've had widgeon, blacks, and wood ducks come into mallard decoys, so I would like a call(if possible) that will have some effect on these birds, even if it's not ideal for them.
That said, any general advice would also be greatly appreciated.