This is the first year they have been banned in Arkansas. I'm anxious to see how my buddies down there do without them.
I don't particularly have a preference. Sometimes I hunt with it, sometimes without. I have noticed that some days it works good, sometimes it flares ducks. There has been many occasions where I have taken it down because they were flaring. When I took it down, they came on in. I think it just depends on what mood they're in (and if they've been shot at from a spread with one in it). The main reason they have banned them is because they supposedly attract the younger birds. I would tend to agree because if a seasoned bird that had been shot at before saw it, he would look the other way. A young bird has probably never seen one, and might think it his momma.
It does help to have some kind of motion in your spread. I have found a little device called an H2O magnet that works very well. I never hunt without them. It's a little hockey puck shaped deal that works on two AA batteries. It has a little gyrating magnet inside. When you turn it on and put it in the water, it creates ripples throughout your spread. I use 1 for every dozen dekes I put out. I have actually had birds land on them before!
If they ban them, the only thing I'd be pissed about is the $150 that I blew last year.
My girlfriend's dad has a five acre duck marsh. I'm in love. (2008-2009)
My new girlfriend's dad is an outboard motor mechanic. I'm in love. (2010-)