Use of Flocked Head Decoys?

Share tips and ask questions on all types of duck decoys. Including working, classics, collectable, and carving decoys.

Moderators: HENDU3270, Remman, DUKHTR, fowlhunter

Use of Flocked Head Decoys?

Postby mandrakeduck » Tue Apr 23, 2013 9:46 pm

I just purchased a doz. Dakota X-treme Decoys. They come with 7 drake floater bodies, 7 flocked drake heads, and 7 painted drake heads.

Is there a "rule of thumb" to govern whether to use the flocked or painted heads, or is it all a matter of preference?

I was attracted to these decoys by the way they sit and activate in the water, more than the flocked heads.

I plan to store these decoys in a slot bag.

Thanks for sharing your opinions.
mandrakeduck
hunter
 
Posts: 11
Joined: Fri Nov 20, 2009 12:54 pm


Re: Use of Flocked Head Decoys?

Postby Rick Hall » Wed Apr 24, 2013 5:08 am

I've used Dakotas the past three seasons and am a fan, but I doubt the flocked heads are any more attractive to ducks than the painted. Might even be that brightly painted ones are more attractive to the birds than the muted flocking. I've been running some of each.
If you think I'm wrong, you might be right.
User avatar
Rick Hall
hunter
 
Posts: 13523
Joined: Thu Jan 22, 2009 8:03 pm

Re: Use of Flocked Head Decoys?

Postby Crazy Matt » Thu Apr 25, 2013 6:20 am

Use the flocked heads for very small holes. That's what I do.
Call, Kill, Consume.
User avatar
Crazy Matt
Explosives Expert
 
Posts: 6922
Joined: Wed Feb 08, 2012 2:58 pm
Location: Texas

Re: Use of Flocked Head Decoys?

Postby 3200 man » Thu Apr 25, 2013 6:31 am

I have found the flocked heads worked best in the sun and the painted ones were better in the shade . The way they sit
in the water is what pulls the birds in . With my home-made field stakes , the flocked ones gives me a advantage .

3200
3200 man
hunter
 
Posts: 2792
Joined: Thu Nov 12, 2009 10:30 am

Re: 3200 man

Postby mandrakeduck » Thu Apr 25, 2013 1:59 pm

With my home-made field stakes , the flocked ones gives me a advantage .


I'de love to see a pic of a dakota and your a home made field stand :)

Thanks
mandrakeduck
hunter
 
Posts: 11
Joined: Fri Nov 20, 2009 12:54 pm

Re: Use of Flocked Head Decoys?

Postby Cajun1085 » Fri Apr 26, 2013 7:21 am

I use the flocked Dakotas and really like them. Do they make a difference? Not really sure. I took it a step further though. I Airbrushed iridescent purple/blue on the flocked heads. I think they look good.
Attachments
photo.JPG
GATORTAIL 1646 25GTR



SouthEast Gator-tail
User avatar
Cajun1085
hunter
 
Posts: 529
Joined: Sun Nov 20, 2011 7:42 am
Location: Silver Spring MD (displaced Coonass)

Re: Use of Flocked Head Decoys?

Postby mudpack » Fri Apr 26, 2013 8:53 am

mandrakeduck wrote:Is there a "rule of thumb" to govern whether to use the flocked or painted heads, or is it all a matter of preference?

Rule of thumb: Use the flocked heads only during open season. Same for painted.





C'mon, guys, let's not make this overly-complicated.
mudpack
hunter
 
Posts: 5708
Joined: Mon Feb 23, 2009 10:40 am
Location: Central Kansas

Re: Use of Flocked Head Decoys?

Postby Rick Hall » Fri Apr 26, 2013 8:58 am

mudpack wrote:C'mon, guys, let's not make this overly-complicated.


That coming from the guy who yesterday said of the Dakotas:
mudpack wrote:They'd be wise to take a good look at their drake, too.
If you think I'm wrong, you might be right.
User avatar
Rick Hall
hunter
 
Posts: 13523
Joined: Thu Jan 22, 2009 8:03 pm

Re: Use of Flocked Head Decoys?

Postby mandrakeduck » Fri Apr 26, 2013 10:29 am

Rule of thumb: Use the flocked heads only during open season. Same for painted.


This is a hunting gear forum. I asked a reasonable Q. and have been grateful to receive some intelligent answers. Your post is the exception. I assume you are not a troll... so as the OP- your sarcasm is neither appreciated or wanted.
mandrakeduck
hunter
 
Posts: 11
Joined: Fri Nov 20, 2009 12:54 pm

Re: Use of Flocked Head Decoys?

Postby mudpack » Fri Apr 26, 2013 4:09 pm

You know, after giving it some thought, I believe you are right.
My cynical answer was uncalled for, and I ask that you accept my apologies.
mudpack
hunter
 
Posts: 5708
Joined: Mon Feb 23, 2009 10:40 am
Location: Central Kansas

Re: Use of Flocked Head Decoys?

Postby Frank Lopez » Sat Apr 27, 2013 8:49 am

At some point in your duck hunting career you will come to the realization that most of these "new and improved" ideas for gear in general is based on you thinking like a human and not a duck. Consider that the bird you're trying to fool has a brain the size of half a walnut, is flying by your spread at 30 to 40 mph and is looking things over with one eye (no depth perception). Ocer the years I've hunted over stuffers, some very good commercially available decoys, some pretty beat up decoys and some I carved myself. If you are in a place the birds want to be and you set your spread in a realistic manner, it doesn't matter at all.

There's a video on the NYSDEC website about a fellow upstate NY that carves some very nice birds. They still look like wooden carvings, but nice wooden carvings. His point is that when you're duck hunting you spend a lot of time looking at your decoys, so you can look at nice decoys or not so nice decoys. Both will work. And I can personally vouch for the fact that the not so nice birds will work about as well as any. Any resemblance by some of my original carvings to a duck was purely coincidental. But they tolled birds.

If the flocked heads, or anything else make you feel better or more confidant, get them. It can't hurt. But I seriously doubt if they'll really help.

Frank
I feel slightly sorry for a man who has never patterned his gun, who has no idea how far his chosen load will retain killing penetration. But I'm extremely sorry for the ducks he shoots at beyond the killing range of his gun and load - Bob Brister
User avatar
Frank Lopez
hunter
 
Posts: 2935
Joined: Wed Feb 03, 2010 4:34 pm
Location: Long Island New York

Re: Use of Flocked Head Decoys?

Postby Rick Hall » Sat Apr 27, 2013 10:07 am

Frank Lopez wrote:At some point in your duck hunting career you will come to the realization that most of these "new and improved" ideas for gear in general is based on you thinking like a human and not a duck. Consider that the bird you're trying to fool has a brain the size of half a walnut, is flying by your spread at 30 to 40 mph and is looking things over with one eye (no depth perception). Ocer the years I've hunted over stuffers, some very good commercially available decoys, some pretty beat up decoys and some I carved myself. If you are in a place the birds want to be and you set your spread in a realistic manner, it doesn't matter at all.


I didn't have to be very far into my duck hunting career to come to the realization that I could all too infrequently set up right where the birds wanted to be or that it wasn't nearly so hard to fool birds flying by a spread at 30 to 40mph as the ones hanging up giving it a hard look. Or to see birds flaring off decoys and over guns, for that matter.

Suggesting decoy quality doesn't matter because some birds will toll to most anything is akin to saying concealment doesn't matter because some birds have tolled while you're standing in the spread taking a whiz.
If you think I'm wrong, you might be right.
User avatar
Rick Hall
hunter
 
Posts: 13523
Joined: Thu Jan 22, 2009 8:03 pm

Re: Use of Flocked Head Decoys?

Postby Frank Lopez » Sat Apr 27, 2013 11:49 am

I have to disagree, Rick. The birds just don't see all that well as some might give them credit for. Without binocular vision, all that detail is lost. And the subject at hand, flocking, is just too detailed to notice even by humans.

As far as concealment, I've sat on a stool on a barren beach in a tan canvas jacket with my decoys 15 t0 35 yards in front of me on a very pressured public marsh and not had issues. Movement, or lack of it, is the key.

Far too often, hunters tend to attribute human qualities to their quarry. The fact is that game does not think, nor does game have the ability to reason. What game does do is to react to its environment. If something looks unnatural, they'll avoid the area. And the fact is that they aren't all that good at determining what looks perfectly natural. On a bet, Ted Trueblood once painted bright red stripes on the backs of his decoys and still brought in ducks.

Like I said, if it makes you feel better, have at it. But it really isn't necessary.

Frank
I feel slightly sorry for a man who has never patterned his gun, who has no idea how far his chosen load will retain killing penetration. But I'm extremely sorry for the ducks he shoots at beyond the killing range of his gun and load - Bob Brister
User avatar
Frank Lopez
hunter
 
Posts: 2935
Joined: Wed Feb 03, 2010 4:34 pm
Location: Long Island New York

Re: Use of Flocked Head Decoys?

Postby Rick Hall » Sat Apr 27, 2013 12:20 pm

Frank, it would be more than fine with me if everyone else thought like you.
If you think I'm wrong, you might be right.
User avatar
Rick Hall
hunter
 
Posts: 13523
Joined: Thu Jan 22, 2009 8:03 pm

Re: Use of Flocked Head Decoys?

Postby Mean Gene » Sat Apr 27, 2013 4:48 pm

Ted Trueblood once painted bright red stripes on the backs of his decoys and still brought in ducks.


If you're exactly where they want to be you can get away with alot...if you are competing with others in heavy pressure areas you can not. Personally, I will try and get every advantage I can, and that includes using the best looking decoys I can. There is no comparison to a fully flocked, nicely airbrushed decoy as opposed to cheap plastics with shiny paint. :thumbsup:
User avatar
Mean Gene
hunter
 
Posts: 780
Joined: Sat Dec 09, 2006 6:16 pm
Location: Yreka, CA

Re: Use of Flocked Head Decoys?

Postby Frank Lopez » Sat Apr 27, 2013 5:12 pm

Mean Gene wrote:There is no comparison to a fully flocked, nicely airbrushed decoy as opposed to cheap plastics with shiny paint. :thumbsup:


Perhaps in your eyes. But it doesn't matter to the ducks. No matter how much you anthropomorphisize it, they are still not equipped with the ocular or cranial capacity to descern that much detail. He11, I've seen turkeys try and mount a decoy that looked more like a decoy than a real hen! At that was up close and personal and not moving!

Birds are no smarter today than they were fifty years ago. Back then a lot of us were using the old Victor paper mache decoys. Those things barely resembled ducks in shape, had horrible paint and on top of all that, the eye color was yellow regardless of species! Half the time they were so beat up from being thrown in the bag or boat that they looked more like duck we'd already killed. But, they worked. And worked well.

According to some scientists and decoy manuracturers, birds see in the UV spectrum. If that's the case, why are they dropping in on any spread that isn't painted with UV paint? They tried that one on deer hunters about twenty years ago. Kind of fell by the wayside. Same with all these innovations in waterfowl decoys. It's all about advertizing and marketing and mostly about prying dead presidents from your wallet. Just like fishing lures. The ammo manufacturers are doing the same thing with the different gimmick loads. The bottom line is that you can't buy success. You might get lucky once or twice, but in the long run, you're selling yourself short because it's YOUR own skill that'skilling birds, not anything you buy.

Frank
I feel slightly sorry for a man who has never patterned his gun, who has no idea how far his chosen load will retain killing penetration. But I'm extremely sorry for the ducks he shoots at beyond the killing range of his gun and load - Bob Brister
User avatar
Frank Lopez
hunter
 
Posts: 2935
Joined: Wed Feb 03, 2010 4:34 pm
Location: Long Island New York

Re: Use of Flocked Head Decoys?

Postby Rick Hall » Sat Apr 27, 2013 6:11 pm

Mr. Wizard's still slaying 'em over mud clumps with his atlatl.
If you think I'm wrong, you might be right.
User avatar
Rick Hall
hunter
 
Posts: 13523
Joined: Thu Jan 22, 2009 8:03 pm

Re: Use of Flocked Head Decoys?

Postby Frank Lopez » Sat Apr 27, 2013 6:21 pm

Rick Hall wrote:Mr. Wizard's still slaying 'em over mud clumps with his atlatl.


Rick, I've always thought you to be smarter than that!

Frank
I feel slightly sorry for a man who has never patterned his gun, who has no idea how far his chosen load will retain killing penetration. But I'm extremely sorry for the ducks he shoots at beyond the killing range of his gun and load - Bob Brister
User avatar
Frank Lopez
hunter
 
Posts: 2935
Joined: Wed Feb 03, 2010 4:34 pm
Location: Long Island New York

Re: Use of Flocked Head Decoys?

Postby Rick Hall » Sat Apr 27, 2013 6:40 pm

I'm smart enough to know that just because some birds are tame as park pigeons, not all are. And I'm smart enough to know that no matter how small their brains are or how poor you think their vision is some birds flare off of even very good decoys, and when their flight then carries them over the blind, it's tough to conclude that it was something other than the decoy(s) that spooked them.

I am by no means smart enough to always know exactly what it was they didn't like. But I'm not too full of what I think I know to try to learn the answers to such riddles.
If you think I'm wrong, you might be right.
User avatar
Rick Hall
hunter
 
Posts: 13523
Joined: Thu Jan 22, 2009 8:03 pm

Re: Use of Flocked Head Decoys?

Postby Rick Hall » Sat Apr 27, 2013 6:52 pm

Frank Lopez wrote:On a bet, Ted Trueblood once painted bright red stripes on the backs of his decoys and still brought in ducks.


Being old enough to recall the barber pole paint job story, but not connecting it to Trueblood, who I recall as a straight shooter, I just Googled it unsuccessfully.

But I did encounter this account of an experiment on the subject by the University of Michigan's School of Natural Reseources:
http://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=1499&dat=19510308&id=GS0aAAAAIBAJ&sjid=4yMEAAAAIBAJ&pg=4524,3630811
If you think I'm wrong, you might be right.
User avatar
Rick Hall
hunter
 
Posts: 13523
Joined: Thu Jan 22, 2009 8:03 pm

Re: Use of Flocked Head Decoys?

Postby Frank Lopez » Sat Apr 27, 2013 6:59 pm

Rick Hall wrote: But I'm not too full of what I think I know to try to learn the answers to such riddles.


That's debateable, as you seem narrow minded about this and bent on one train of thought. There's a whole bunch of hard science that points in another direction. Science that is founded in eliminating variables that might cloud the outcome.

Frank
I feel slightly sorry for a man who has never patterned his gun, who has no idea how far his chosen load will retain killing penetration. But I'm extremely sorry for the ducks he shoots at beyond the killing range of his gun and load - Bob Brister
User avatar
Frank Lopez
hunter
 
Posts: 2935
Joined: Wed Feb 03, 2010 4:34 pm
Location: Long Island New York

Re: Use of Flocked Head Decoys?

Postby Frank Lopez » Sat Apr 27, 2013 7:00 pm

Rick Hall wrote:
Frank Lopez wrote:On a bet, Ted Trueblood once painted bright red stripes on the backs of his decoys and still brought in ducks.


Being old enough to recall the barber pole paint job story, but not connecting it to Trueblood, who I recall as a straight shooter, I just Googled it unsuccessfully.

But I did encounter this account of an experiment on the subject by the University of Michigan's School of Natural Reseources:
http://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=1499&dat=19510308&id=GS0aAAAAIBAJ&sjid=4yMEAAAAIBAJ&pg=4524,3630811


Try Lamar Underwood's "The Duck Hunter's Book"!

Frank
I feel slightly sorry for a man who has never patterned his gun, who has no idea how far his chosen load will retain killing penetration. But I'm extremely sorry for the ducks he shoots at beyond the killing range of his gun and load - Bob Brister
User avatar
Frank Lopez
hunter
 
Posts: 2935
Joined: Wed Feb 03, 2010 4:34 pm
Location: Long Island New York

Re: Use of Flocked Head Decoys?

Postby Rick Hall » Sat Apr 27, 2013 7:20 pm

Only online copy I could find stopped short of the second of his two pieces in it. Wasn't in the first.

Perhaps you should repeat the experiment and get back to us.
If you think I'm wrong, you might be right.
User avatar
Rick Hall
hunter
 
Posts: 13523
Joined: Thu Jan 22, 2009 8:03 pm

Re: Use of Flocked Head Decoys?

Postby bloodnguts » Sun Apr 28, 2013 7:08 am

To Frank Lopez, I'm actually in the market to buy decoys right now, and I'm curious, based on your beliefs, what kind of decoys make up the bulk of your spread right now? I'm also curious, if you're hunting a small waterhole where you will only use a handful of your decoys, do you even take the time to pick the best looking decoys you have, or the cleanest, or the ones with the least chipped paint, or do you just randomly grab a handful of decoys from the bulk of your spread. When I throw a handful of decoys out, I always try to pick the ones in the best condition, but maybe even that is a waste of time.
bloodnguts
hunter
 
Posts: 41
Joined: Mon Mar 12, 2012 2:08 pm

Re: Use of Flocked Head Decoys?

Postby mudpack » Sun Apr 28, 2013 7:12 am

I'm afraid Frank is 100% correct on this: ducks have no ability to reason, they cannot apply logic to their situations, and we invariably view their world through human eyes.

Rick is also correct: as a human hunter, I want my decoys to be as perfect as they possibly can be....for my own sake as much as for the ducks. Good-looking (to the DUCKS!) decoys never hurt my chances.

Ultra-realistic decoys may not be necessary 98% of the time (and I believe they are not), but when that other 2% of the hunting situations comes around, I want ALL the details on MY side. This includes decoys, gun, camouflage, blinds/cover, etc.

I believe flocked decoys look a lot better to us than they do to the ducks. LIfe-like shapes and body/head positions are more important to their appeal. Placement of the blocks themselves is at least as important as the appearance of the individual decoys. That's my opinion, based on over 50 years of hunting waterfowl.
mudpack
hunter
 
Posts: 5708
Joined: Mon Feb 23, 2009 10:40 am
Location: Central Kansas

Next

Return to Duck Decoy Forum

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Google [Bot] and 17 guests