Open water hunting from a pop-up blind

Duck hunting for diver species like Canvasbacks, Redheads, Ringnecks, Eiders, Goldeneye and other diver ducks.

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Open water hunting from a pop-up blind

Postby DukDukGoose » Thu Oct 25, 2012 2:23 pm

So this weekend, i think i may try open water hunting. Dont have a layout boat, am just going to use my usual duck rig with the marsh pop-up blind. Just looking for some tips for this type of hunting. What to do, what not to do, what works, what doesnt. We have about 4 dozen decoys were going to be using. 1 doz buffles, 15 goldeneyes, 9 bluebills, then maybe another dozen mixed divers.
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Re: Open water hunting from a pop-up blind

Postby tmclaimerFL » Thu Oct 25, 2012 2:59 pm

Where are you hunting?
Only trust those who like big butts, for they cannot lie.
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Re: Open water hunting from a pop-up blind

Postby DukDukGoose » Thu Oct 25, 2012 3:05 pm

Petenwell Lake, Wisconsin
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Re: Open water hunting from a pop-up blind

Postby tmclaimerFL » Thu Oct 25, 2012 3:30 pm

I hunt in FL so I dont know anything about your area, but I can say I have hunted open water in Tampa and the gulf with my jon boat and pop up blind with avery grass with no issues. Guys on the east and west coast of the US bays use large boats in open water with no vegetation and still get limits. As far as decoys go I would stick to the typical J hook spread with open end facing downwind or a V formation. Are you running long lines at all? Large spreads work best with divers especially on open water because you want to simulate a large raft of birds. Long lines are helpful in this sense because they make the spread more visible and give the birds a guide to your pod.
Only trust those who like big butts, for they cannot lie.
WTN10 wrote:The moral of the story is this: don't cut cabbage when your dog is in heat.


Botiz630 wrote:Finally, I can compensate for my tiny wiener without breaking the bank.
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Re: Open water hunting from a pop-up blind

Postby vacuum6 » Thu Oct 25, 2012 3:53 pm

just a couple of things you will have to look out for. I assume that you are also going to be hunting from the same boat that will be chasing and picking up birds and decoys. if that is the case, be very, very, VERY mindful of the fact that you need to have a way in and out of your set without running over anchor lines. you really don't want to get your prop tangled in those lines....very difficult to get heavy tarred mother lines off your prop from inside the boat! make sure you double anchor your shooting boat ....use bumpers or floats of some kind so you can re attach after going for downed birds. have some pretty long handle poles with hooks. I am not familiar with how deep this lake is...if you have a choice....shallower water with shorter anchor lines are a little less problematic. if you are able to bring a tender to set/pick up decoys and birds....then you can disregard what I said. everybody needs to get anchor lines wrapped around their prop.... it is part of the initiation process. good luck...it is supposed to be windy fri and sat....
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Re: Open water hunting from a pop-up blind

Postby tmclaimerFL » Thu Oct 25, 2012 5:32 pm

vacuum6 wrote:just a couple of things you will have to look out for. I assume that you are also going to be hunting from the same boat that will be chasing and picking up birds and decoys. if that is the case, be very, very, VERY mindful of the fact that you need to have a way in and out of your set without running over anchor lines. you really don't want to get your prop tangled in those lines....very difficult to get heavy tarred mother lines off your prop from inside the boat! make sure you double anchor your shooting boat ....use bumpers or floats of some kind so you can re attach after going for downed birds. have some pretty long handle poles with hooks. I am not familiar with how deep this lake is...if you have a choice....shallower water with shorter anchor lines are a little less problematic. if you are able to bring a tender to set/pick up decoys and birds....then you can disregard what I said. everybody needs to get anchor lines wrapped around their prop.... it is part of the initiation process. good luck...it is supposed to be windy fri and sat....

X2 on the anchor lines. I had the opportunity of running over a couple decoy lines during early season and having it get wrapped on my prop. I was in a rush to get the downed bird since there was a gator chasing it :biggrin: . Also make sure you have some way of commuincation on hand and let people know where you are. last thing you want to do is be stranded on open water with nobody around. All your safety equipment is a must, but Im sure you are ware of that. I also like to carry an extra gun on hand for cripples so you dont rush trying to reload your shooting gun as the bird dives or swims off. All in all just be safe, its not like shooting puddle ducks.
Only trust those who like big butts, for they cannot lie.
WTN10 wrote:The moral of the story is this: don't cut cabbage when your dog is in heat.


Botiz630 wrote:Finally, I can compensate for my tiny wiener without breaking the bank.
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Re: Open water hunting from a pop-up blind

Postby apexhunter » Fri Nov 02, 2012 7:10 am

I diver hunted for several years with a pop up blind with very few problems. Generally speaking divers aren't as discerning as puddle ducks and as long as one stays still they'll come into the spread but they do become educated as the season goes along. One thing you may consider is lashing some brushy vegetation to the ends to get rid of the boxy look as late season birds have seen every rig on the water and the less manmade your rig is the better. That said some fishing captains at the coast take parties diver & sea duck hunting on 30'+ boats with success.

As for the anchor(s) I leave a wide path into the dekes and use a magnum decoy or crab pot bouy tied to the front anchor line and use a heavy carabeaner to hook the line to the bow eye or rear cleat. This way you can unhook, motor out to retrieve or chase cripples and reposition back to the same position time and again. Running 2 anchors is a bit different but you can either use the same rig at the stern or just pull in and re-deploy the rear anchor with each trip. We set the boat perpendicular to the wind and upwind of the decoys so the bow anchor is in front and upwind of the boat so there is less chance of running into the anchor line itself if you grab it as you are pulling back into place...same with the stern anchor.
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