Expensive vs. cheap!

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Re: Expensive vs. cheap!

Postby berganser » Wed Jun 04, 2014 1:39 pm

Sometimes it good to just watch and see what the birds are doing.
So many seem to grab for the calls right away, instead of seeing what's going on.

As far as expensive VS. cheap--I don't mind picking up a good custom call for cheap :thumbsup:
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Re: Expensive vs. cheap!

Postby aunt betty » Fri Jun 06, 2014 6:57 am

berganser wrote:Sometimes it good to just watch and see what the birds are doing.

Great comment...
Reading a flock of ducks is something you do. Not sure if I do it right but if a flock is organized and every bird is flap flap flapping along on a mission I tend to not waste effort on that one.
Look for a flock that has a "drifter" in it or two.
Maybe a bird is switching from one side of the vee to the other or maybe hes just head-bobbing side to side or maybe just not flapping his wings as fast. Something clicks in my head and I'm thinking, " I can fool that one" and I pour it on with a highball or two. Break one duck and the rest follow.

Back on topic. Used to use strictly cheap duck calls and swore by them. IMO you get better results with the high end calls.
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Re: Expensive vs. cheap!

Postby Frank Lopez » Fri Jun 06, 2014 10:12 am

berganser wrote:Sometimes it good to just watch and see what the birds are doing.


Very true! But, I think it's important to watch and see what everyone else on the marsh is doing, too. At least that's the case up here. Most times we get the weekend warriors who come in and start blowing like they're on the stage at Stuttgart. After a day or two, the birds wise up, and fast. When this happens, we either shut up altogether or just use some soft quacks and an occasional drake whistle. Location and decoy spread are more important. Calling merely gets their attention. When the birds are heavily pressured, they tend to go quite. You do the same.

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Re: Expensive vs. cheap!

Postby cluckmeister » Fri Jun 06, 2014 10:31 am

Frank Lopez wrote:
berganser wrote:Sometimes it good to just watch and see what the birds are doing.


Very true! But, I think it's important to watch and see what everyone else on the marsh is doing, too. At least that's the case up here. Most times we get the weekend warriors who come in and start blowing like they're on the stage at Stuttgart. After a day or two, the birds wise up, and fast. When this happens, we either shut up altogether or just use some soft quacks and an occasional drake whistle. Location and decoy spread are more important. Calling merely gets their attention. When the birds are heavily pressured, they tend to go quite. You do the same.

Frank


Frank, I do exactly what you do. Where we hunt the weekend warriors tend to make the birds very call shy. Being retired my 2 buddies and I don't have to deal with the weekenders and we hunt on Wednesday or Thursday depending on the weather. We have adopted the three group rule. We call the first three groups and if the birds don't react. We switch to the whistles, pintail widgeon, teal and the drake mallard and a soft and slow mallard tic it tic it tic it. Since we normally put out all of those different species of duck decoys, its seems very realistic and we have had superb success. BTW I have a small lake across from my house with anywhere from 2 to a hundred Mallards on it at any time except for when its froze over. Ive noticed that I seldom hear a high ball, unless its right at sunrise or sunset.
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Re: Expensive vs. cheap!

Postby clampdaddy » Fri Jun 06, 2014 1:35 pm

aunt betty wrote: .....Back on topic. Used to use strictly cheap duck calls and swore by them. IMO you get better results with the high end calls.

One thing I noticed was that my first "high end" call (an acrylic RnT Original) really helped me become a better caller because it was so much easier to run and I could really work on my technique. I always had problems getting down good chuckles and quick cuts until I started running that call. I guess it kind of helped to turn on my light switch, so to speak. Since then all of my favorite single reed calls have been "high end" pieces but my favorite double reed is still a $20 quackhead.
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Re: Expensive vs. cheap!

Postby Rick Hall » Fri Jun 06, 2014 6:45 pm

aunt betty wrote:
berganser wrote:Sometimes it good to just watch and see what the birds are doing.

Great comment...
Reading a flock of ducks is something you do. Not sure if I do it right but if a flock is organized and every bird is flap flap flapping along on a mission I tend to not waste effort on that one.


May I suggest that competent aggressive calling can very often spark a reflex wink or blink of the wing from birds boring straight on for points elsewhere. And having sparked that response in a bird it's best to forget the flock, focus on it alone and really pour it on until he/she's well separated from the flock or the group has followed the original respondent far enough off its intended line of flight to break its momentum toward where it was headed - sometimes all the way to the guns if they waver otherwise. My experience suggests that once you've gotten that wink or blink from a bird, not breaking it altogether means you weren't aggressive enough.

Often the best way to get that reflex response is beginning with a few ringing notes of "contest" hail call transitioning into an every-hen-on-the-pond "comeback". Never mind the old experts calling you a "weekender" or whatever, just shoot ducks they were only bird watching and have fun.
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Re: Expensive vs. cheap!

Postby cluckmeister » Fri Jun 06, 2014 7:20 pm

Rick, bird watching for us old guys is fun especially when those birds we are watching drop into the decoys from not over calling them. I guess you might say my buddies and I have two styles of calling when we hunt. The first 3 groups that come along we use the Rick Hall Method and if that don't work we use the Old Farts Method. LOL In our case in the area we hunt, the last three years or so, the Old Farts Method worked best. But who knows what this season will bring
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Re: Expensive vs. cheap!

Postby Rick Hall » Fri Jun 06, 2014 7:49 pm

If they were going to fall for your "old fart method," there would be no need to get after them in the first place. Had you read my post for content, rather than argument, you'd see it made direct reference to traveling birds that weren't indicating interest in the area. No where have I suggested that anyone get aggressive when finesse would do as well or better. Among other things, doing that would leave one no way to up the ante if birds saw something they didn't like or simply staled on what I was doing before committing.
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Re: Expensive vs. cheap!

Postby cluckmeister » Fri Jun 06, 2014 8:07 pm

Rick, I wasn't being argumentative, I was pointing out that the birds you talk about being not aggressive enough with, may have came in with out all the calling. You and I hunt in way different areas, if the videos you post indicate the area you hunt, you have a ton of ducks to call and with out a doubt your style works. Unfortunately , I don't have the luxury of hunting private or lease property with thousands of ducks. If we have 3,000 ducks on 4000 acres, we are doing good. Also, the ducks on our areas are here for several weeks and get wise to every calling routine you can think of. Im not a guide but, Ive hunted waterfowl for 40 years, give me a little credit for being smart enough to figure out what works and what don't in the area I hunt.
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Re: Expensive vs. cheap!

Postby Rick Hall » Fri Jun 06, 2014 8:30 pm

One last time:
Rick Hall wrote:If they were going to fall for your "old fart method," there would be no need to get after them in the first place. Had you read my post for content, rather than argument, you'd see it made direct reference to traveling birds that weren't indicating interest in the area. No where have I suggested that anyone get aggressive when finesse would do as well or better. Among other things, doing that would leave one no way to up the ante if birds saw something they didn't like or simply staled on what I was doing before committing.


And I'm surprised that anyone would think the pre and after season teal videos I've posted are remotely representative of what we see after the shooting starts. For a look at what our hunting is really like, you're welcome to check out my online logs. Last year's is here: http://www.pitblind.com/index.php/forum/rick and the previous six are in these archives under "Rick": http://www.pitblind.com/index.php/forum/365-logbook-archives
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Re: Expensive vs. cheap!

Postby cluckmeister » Fri Jun 06, 2014 9:17 pm

Disregarding the Spring video, and not knowing when your season ends its easy to think you can hunt in early February, I read the DU migration reports and it seems like you guys always have a ton of ducks that time of year. How big of an area do you hunt and what would you say your average population is all season long? One of the guys I hunt with goes to La every year and always comes back with stories of ducks every where, he usually goes in Dec. Here is a season tally for the area I hunt, as I said its a small area 4000 acres with about half huntable, 1500 surface acres. Season totals: 3,660 hunters have harvested 6,011 ducks. That total includes all of duck season and 21 day special teal season. Only 17 geese were taken for the goose season, so you can see its not a waterfowl mecca. Figuring 6011 ducks killed by 3660 hunters over the season means tough hunting in my book. LOL
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Re: Expensive vs. cheap!

Postby Rick Hall » Sat Jun 07, 2014 6:09 am

If you reference the links I provided, you'll see I hunt this acre every duck season morning:
Image

Only some years it looks more like this:
Image

and needs this time and time and time again:
Image

to be a pond:
Image

Those ruts in the mud having been cut by this poor guy:
Image

Fortunately for my hunters, it's in an area that usually sees its share of traffic, a good bit of which uses the surrounding marsh, because in the eight years I've been hunting the mudhole, we've moved ducks off it just four times. Which is likely why it was largely abandoned and allowed to close up, after this fellow passed, by the club that had the marsh from the '30s until we took it over in 2006:
Image

He was Obrey Trahan, and everyone wanted to hunt Obrey's blind, despite his reputation for great candor about his hunters' shooting, until Obrey wasn't there any more and the gunning there went down the tubes making it an "extra" blind for the twenty or so years before I rehabbed it. Sadly, I never knew, much less hunted with Obrey, but what I hear over and over from those who did is "Obrey wasn't afraid of a duck call. If he could see it, he'd hail it." Which isn't surprising, since unless teal decide to traffic low away from their usual more open water routes, it's going to be a mighty skinny morning if you can't work big ducks wanting to be somewhere else.

Perhaps that should be in the "best waterfowler" thread, because more than a couple of guys who hunted with Obrey called him that.

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Re: Expensive vs. cheap!

Postby cluckmeister » Sat Jun 07, 2014 8:17 am

Rick your area looks much like the one we hunt, it appears from looking at the mud picture, we both need to learn Indian rain dances LOL This last season we were blessed with lots of rain thus a record for ducks shot was made but previous to that the most ducks harvested in a single season was 3,214 set in 2008. Some years we are completely dry. There are 38 areas to hunt of the 1500 surface acres of water if we get the rain. It sounds like the old gentleman in the picture would of been quite the fellow to hunt with. They don't make them like that any more. Theyre part of the tradition of water fowling
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Re: Expensive vs. cheap!

Postby On the X » Sat Jun 21, 2014 9:51 pm

Rick Hall wrote:
Hard to imagine a call more useless than one ducks either can't hear at all or that lacks the teeth to garner reflex response from those that require it.

The call that's got "teeth" ain't worth a cheap pair of dentures in most peoples hands and a LOT of less expensive calls have been made to grow "teeth" in the right hands. When you can pull a paired drake from his hen and kill him at 20 yds while his hen is circling trying to pull him back then your call has the "teeth" needed to garner that reflex response.
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Re: Expensive vs. cheap!

Postby Rick Hall » Sun Jun 22, 2014 5:04 am

On the X wrote:When you can pull a paired drake from his hen and kill him at 20 yds while his hen is circling trying to pull him back...


We say the hen left saying, "I told him. I told the dumb arse, but he never listens to me."
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Re: Expensive vs. cheap!

Postby aunt betty » Sun Jun 22, 2014 8:01 am

Somebody got us good when they bumped a SEVEN YEAR OLD THREAD.
:hammer:
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Re: Expensive vs. cheap!

Postby Rick Hall » Sun Jun 22, 2014 8:45 am

aunt betty wrote:Somebody got us good when they bumped a SEVEN YEAR OLD THREAD.
:hammer:


Even better, the "somebody" was a spambot:

Rick Hall wrote:
Frank Lopez wrote:I didn't bother reading more than half this thread. Mostly because it's always the same old crap. The truth is...


Psst...Frank, this thread is seven years old and was brought up by a spambot trying to generate posts to beat the filters. You're arguing with yourself. And wrong.
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Re: Expensive vs. cheap!

Postby Frank Lopez » Mon Jun 23, 2014 12:33 pm

Rick Hall wrote:
aunt betty wrote:Somebody got us good when they bumped a SEVEN YEAR OLD THREAD.
:hammer:


Even better, the "somebody" was a spambot:

Rick Hall wrote:
Frank Lopez wrote:I didn't bother reading more than half this thread. Mostly because it's always the same old crap. The truth is...


Psst...Frank, this thread is seven years old and was brought up by a spambot trying to generate posts to beat the filters. You're arguing with yourself. And wrong.


Maybe so, but I was correct about it being the same old crap.

Frank
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Re: Expensive vs. cheap!

Postby Rick Hall » Mon Jun 23, 2014 6:48 pm

True, but we forgive you, Frank. You gave us something ducky to help pass a bit of the off season or I'd not of picked at you for more of that "same old crap".
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Re: Expensive vs. cheap!

Postby aunt betty » Wed Jun 25, 2014 9:46 am

I like any excuse to talk ducks...
The ones I hunt stay at a certain place and basically migrate NORTH to feed at sunset. At dawn they migrate back. How far? Around 25-50 miles each way. I know right where they go because I followed them one evening. That was quite an adventure in itself.

Point is I hunt the same ducks every day. Good thing there are about a million of them. :yes:
Watching a million ducks take off and leave at sunset is VERY cool. KNOWING they'll be back is wonderful and gives me extreme confidence. There is no ¨maybe I'll skip today¨ in your mind in the morning when you KNOW a million ducks are about to fly over the hole.

I also know I am getting ducks because my tactics are so different from what everyone else does that nobody is anywhere near me. Imagine a one or two mile diameter circle with you in the center and NO other hunters in that circle. Can't say why or my circle would get real small real quick.

Calls and tactics are pretty well universally copied and written about in magazines and books. Someday I'm gonna write a book.

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Re: Expensive vs. cheap!

Postby Rick Hall » Wed Jun 25, 2014 4:55 pm

aunt betty wrote:I also know I am getting ducks because my tactics are so different from what everyone else does that nobody is anywhere near me. Imagine a one or two mile diameter circle with you in the center and NO other hunters in that circle. Can't say why or my circle would get real small real quick.


"Mind blown." Can't begin to imagine that in Arkansas, much less here, unless one is ultra rich or poaching the refuge system. Now folks will be sifting through your garbage for clues.
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