Drake to hen ratio for decoys

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Drake to hen ratio for decoys

Postby Skiptowns » Mon Oct 21, 2013 11:49 am

Anyone got any thoughts? I got some Bird Vision UV paint (anyone every use this?) as a gift and am touching up some old decoys, thinking I could do a little sex change operation..........
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Re: Drake to hen ratio for decoys

Postby bknilvr00 » Mon Oct 21, 2013 12:05 pm

With it being really early on in the season, some ducks aren't even colored up yet. So really if you wanted to you could run all hens... Could be a good experiment.

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Re: Drake to hen ratio for decoys

Postby kcidkcus » Mon Oct 21, 2013 12:09 pm

bknilvr00 wrote:With it being really early on in the season, some ducks aren't even colored up yet. So really if you wanted to you could run all hens... Could be a good experiment.

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Depends on your area, majority of our birds have been fully plumed for 3 weeks at least.
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Re: Drake to hen ratio for decoys

Postby ScaupHunter » Mon Oct 21, 2013 1:54 pm

I always run more hens than drakes.

Since a few hunting buddies and I started doing this over 20 years ago we have notice a very distinct increase in the number of flights that decoy well. My Blue Bill spread has more hens than drakes. 45% to 55% drake to hen ratio. I often hunt 4 or 6 drakes in a 24 decoy spread for puddlers. It doesn't take much color to give the right impression to the birds of a mix of drakes and hens. I have really noticed the difference in the number of small groups of birds that decoy well and land with the higher hen ratio. Larger flocks decoy better overall and small flocks or pairs will often bomb straight into a majority hen spread.

Try it both ways and see what you think. It never hurts to have the hens for early season, you can always get drakes to add for later in the season.

I for one think that the higher number of hens draws all the drakes down into the spread which can turn the entire flock and get it to commit. I also think the pairs come in more readily since the drake does not feel like he will be fighting off other drakes for his hen.
Last edited by ScaupHunter on Mon Oct 21, 2013 5:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Drake to hen ratio for decoys

Postby duckdogger07 » Mon Oct 21, 2013 3:16 pm

I run a 1 to 3 set 1 drake for every 3 hens. At least until i start to see the big northern flights than i will run a 40 to 60. 40 percent drakes to 60 percent hens. Its always worked for me.
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Re: Drake to hen ratio for decoys

Postby Professor Chaos » Mon Oct 21, 2013 6:12 pm

i run more drakes early as everyone knows that the more mature birds are already colored up. usually 73.6% drakes to start, Late in the season i switch to more hens as the drakes have been shot up and the flocks of hens have banded together. Never go more than 67.4% hens though. :hi:
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Re: Drake to hen ratio for decoys

Postby kcidkcus » Mon Oct 21, 2013 6:25 pm

Professor Chaos wrote:i run more drakes early as everyone knows that the more mature birds are already colored up. usually 73.6% drakes to start, Late in the season i switch to more hens as the drakes have been shot up and the flocks of hens have banded together. Never go more than 67.4% hens though. :hi:

Does any one else smell that?
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Re: Drake to hen ratio for decoys

Postby Tealer » Mon Oct 21, 2013 7:19 pm

I run whatever comes in the box. Except the few woodies, spoonies and teal. I run a few of those straight drakes. If you have a bunch of decoys out the birds don't stop and count.
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Re: Drake to hen ratio for decoys

Postby WSUWESTON » Mon Oct 21, 2013 9:11 pm

I don't think it really matters. Early season I like to use hens and older drakes that are a little more faded and dirty. Seems to work just fine.
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