Is buying duck land in eastern NC under 150k even worth it?

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Re: Is buying duck land in eastern NC under 150k even worth

Postby merg » Tue Jan 09, 2018 6:30 pm

Bluesky2012 wrote:
CatFan wrote:
merg wrote:
Bluesky2012 wrote:



And I think far too many people underestimate what makes a good one. Yours may be good and does the job you need, but the vast majority of "duck dogs" I've been around have been an absolute headache and we're not worth having out there. OPs is definitely one I would not hunt with.

I enjoy training dogs. I don't do it nearly as much anymore since mine is a finished dog and never needs much more than a quick tune up to be more than ready for season, but I do love the first year and a half or so of training and I take pride in the outcome. Do I always need every tool I've trained? No, but I never move more than 2 ft to pick up a bird, and I enjoy being able to line or handle my dog to every bird.

And to those who say they don't need blinds, y'all are clearly hunting different from where I do (though I'm not in NC anymore). Blinds often are one third or half of what I run either because the tide pulled the bird from the AOF so I run it as a blind so the dog intercepts the bird washing out, or the layout blind doors blocked his view of a bird, thick brush or what ever it may be.


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Well over half of my dogs totes are blinds too. But, to me, there's a huge difference in a blind and a "tough blind".
I sure do like to see a good one well handled to a tough blind though.
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Re: Is buying duck land in eastern NC under 150k even worth

Postby merg » Tue Jan 09, 2018 6:40 pm

ChessieAnd2x4 wrote:Thanks for all the replies.

Look the reason why I'm willing to drop 150k on a new hobbie is bc the unique situation with the dog I have. Ive spent 10 grand already on professional gun dog training from reputable pros that I won't list so as not to offend and it helped somewhat. Its very possible he has some sort of genetic abnormality making him particularly unruly, anxious or difficult but the only way he calms down is by getting him TIRED, and I do this with him by hunting, currently on crappy eastern WV public land. I am completely unwilling to give up on him as a dog, I will not rehome him or send him to the pound I think thats unethical in this situation as he will almost certainly be killed so my hands are tied. It may not make sense and you may think I'm an idiot but understand there are other variables at play here.

Thanks for the suggestions about Arkansas, I'll look into it. I'm also looking at eastern Kentucky but thats a 11 hour drive. I'm looking at eastern shore MD which is close but once again seems extremely competitive to find good duck spots. Might have to knock on some doors and hope some landowner takes pity on us. Either way thanks y'all, this means more than you know. Every day I stick it out with him he gets better. Nothing more meaningful than that for me.

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Lived in eastern NC all my life. Tough for an absentee owner to keep poachers out. I live 20 mins from my swamp and constantly deal with them. I imagine it's the same everywhere.
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Re: Is buying duck land in eastern NC under 150k even worth

Postby CatFan » Wed Jan 10, 2018 8:42 am

Bluesky2012 wrote:
CatFan wrote:
merg wrote:
Bluesky2012 wrote:

Honestly, unless your dog can sit still and not flinch for 6 hrs, mark multiples, and run tough blinds, it is not worth having in the blind.

While I largely agree with the premise of your entire post, this paragraph, IMO, is rediculous.
Any well behaved dog that doesn't flare ducks and totes dead ducks is worth having in my blinds. Every duck he totes is one I don't have to waste time taking the boat out and flaring ducks.
As far as tough blinds go #1, generally speaking, if a dog is having to make a lot of long, tough blinds his owner needs to invest more time in his shooting skills and range awareness, and #2, it's more efficient, imo, to boat the dog over to the area of fall, grab the duck and boat on back, than to have his master standing in front of the blind yelling, blowing a whistle 50 times and waving his arms around for 15 minutes.
The avg duckhunter in NC hunts 8-10 times and kills 8-10 ducks per year. I seriously doubt he needs to invest the time or money it takes to get a dog performing tough blinds, of which he might have 1 per year.
Not knocking you or anybody else who has high standards for their dogs. Good on y'all. It's a real pleasure to watch those dogs work.
But most of us don't need a Ferrari to drive to the grocery store.

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Good points. I think many people over estimate what constitutes a good duck dog. Mine won't sit absolutely still for hours but neither do I! LOL. But she'll lay down and be still when I tell her. True blind retrieves are pretty rare but like you said, if I get her in the right area her nose will do the rest. In 5 years of hunting, she's only failed to come back with a bird when I sent her and I'm not really confident that I knocked the birds down in some cases and in others they sailed farther than I was willing to let her swim across an open lake with bass boats going 60 MPH so I called her back.


And I think far too many people underestimate what makes a good one. Yours may be good and does the job you need, but the vast majority of "duck dogs" I've been around have been an absolute headache and we're not worth having out there. OPs is definitely one I would not hunt with.

I enjoy training dogs. I don't do it nearly as much anymore since mine is a finished dog and never needs much more than a quick tune up to be more than ready for season, but I do love the first year and a half or so of training and I take pride in the outcome. Do I always need every tool I've trained? No, but I never move more than 2 ft to pick up a bird, and I enjoy being able to line or handle my dog to every bird.

And to those who say they don't need blinds, y'all are clearly hunting different from where I do (though I'm not in NC anymore). Blinds often are one third or half of what I run either because the tide pulled the bird from the AOF so I run it as a blind so the dog intercepts the bird washing out, or the layout blind doors blocked his view of a bird, thick brush or what ever it may be.


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You're probably correct on overestimating what a good dog is. Mine is not trained to the fullest extent of her ability but that's on me. I just haven't spent the time. I don't hunt the coast and I very rarely need to send her on a blind retrieve. That mostly due to how we set up. Usually in some brush on the bank, in some flooded timber or sitting on my boat tucked in the reeds. She's able to see and mark the vast majority of the birds we shoot. I also pass on a lot of longer shots that others probably take. She retrieves a lot of balls thrown deep in the woods behind my house so she' gotten very good about hunting for downed birds and doesn't quit until she found it. I also learned early on to trust her instincts (and nose) about where a bird might be over where I "think" I saw it fall. Any time she and I were in disagreement on that I was wrong LOL. So now I trust her to do her thing.

But we're way off the point now. :beer:
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Re: Is buying duck land in eastern NC under 150k even worth

Postby NCGWP » Wed Jan 10, 2018 9:58 am

CatFan wrote:
Bluesky2012 wrote:
CatFan wrote:
merg wrote:
Bluesky2012 wrote:

Honestly, unless your dog can sit still and not flinch for 6 hrs, mark multiples, and run tough blinds, it is not worth having in the blind.

While I largely agree with the premise of your entire post, this paragraph, IMO, is rediculous.
Any well behaved dog that doesn't flare ducks and totes dead ducks is worth having in my blinds. Every duck he totes is one I don't have to waste time taking the boat out and flaring ducks.
As far as tough blinds go #1, generally speaking, if a dog is having to make a lot of long, tough blinds his owner needs to invest more time in his shooting skills and range awareness, and #2, it's more efficient, imo, to boat the dog over to the area of fall, grab the duck and boat on back, than to have his master standing in front of the blind yelling, blowing a whistle 50 times and waving his arms around for 15 minutes.
The avg duckhunter in NC hunts 8-10 times and kills 8-10 ducks per year. I seriously doubt he needs to invest the time or money it takes to get a dog performing tough blinds, of which he might have 1 per year.
Not knocking you or anybody else who has high standards for their dogs. Good on y'all. It's a real pleasure to watch those dogs work.
But most of us don't need a Ferrari to drive to the grocery store.

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Good points. I think many people over estimate what constitutes a good duck dog. Mine won't sit absolutely still for hours but neither do I! LOL. But she'll lay down and be still when I tell her. True blind retrieves are pretty rare but like you said, if I get her in the right area her nose will do the rest. In 5 years of hunting, she's only failed to come back with a bird when I sent her and I'm not really confident that I knocked the birds down in some cases and in others they sailed farther than I was willing to let her swim across an open lake with bass boats going 60 MPH so I called her back.


And I think far too many people underestimate what makes a good one. Yours may be good and does the job you need, but the vast majority of "duck dogs" I've been around have been an absolute headache and we're not worth having out there. OPs is definitely one I would not hunt with.

I enjoy training dogs. I don't do it nearly as much anymore since mine is a finished dog and never needs much more than a quick tune up to be more than ready for season, but I do love the first year and a half or so of training and I take pride in the outcome. Do I always need every tool I've trained? No, but I never move more than 2 ft to pick up a bird, and I enjoy being able to line or handle my dog to every bird.

And to those who say they don't need blinds, y'all are clearly hunting different from where I do (though I'm not in NC anymore). Blinds often are one third or half of what I run either because the tide pulled the bird from the AOF so I run it as a blind so the dog intercepts the bird washing out, or the layout blind doors blocked his view of a bird, thick brush or what ever it may be.


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You're probably correct on overestimating what a good dog is. Mine is not trained to the fullest extent of her ability but that's on me. I just haven't spent the time. I don't hunt the coast and I very rarely need to send her on a blind retrieve. That mostly due to how we set up. Usually in some brush on the bank, in some flooded timber or sitting on my boat tucked in the reeds. She's able to see and mark the vast majority of the birds we shoot. I also pass on a lot of longer shots that others probably take. She retrieves a lot of balls thrown deep in the woods behind my house so she' gotten very good about hunting for downed birds and doesn't quit until she found it. I also learned early on to trust her instincts (and nose) about where a bird might be over where I "think" I saw it fall. Any time she and I were in disagreement on that I was wrong LOL. So now I trust her to do her thing.

But we're way off the point now. :beer:

Taking this further off topic, what you describe is what NAVHDA and JGHV (What Drahthaars test in) teach and test their dogs for. In a test, they release a live clip-wing duck, and actually give you the wrong line to send the dog on, and the dog is evaluated on its independent searching abilities.
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Re: Is buying duck land in eastern NC under 150k even worth

Postby ChessieAnd2x4 » Thu Jan 11, 2018 8:48 pm

I'm taken aback by the intelligent replies here. Thanks y'all. Y'all seem to be sayinf my dog needs some tough love and a better effort out of me to keep him in line so thats exactly what I'm going to do.

I got some good news. My dog made his first retrieve the other day, I was so effin proud you dont even know and I picked up a copy of training your retriever by James Free and am half way through. Definitely a lot of things I've learned, and over the past few days he's definitely been more obedient. Now I have to continue this as a lifestyle instead of some quick fix like a fad diet... Cheers y'all. And I'm located in harpers ferry wv to the man who asked. We hunt the shenandoah and upper potomac.

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Re: Is buying duck land in eastern NC under 150k even worth

Postby CatFan » Fri Jan 12, 2018 10:25 am

ChessieAnd2x4 wrote:I'm taken aback by the intelligent replies here. Thanks y'all. Y'all seem to be sayinf my dog needs some tough love and a better effort out of me to keep him in line so thats exactly what I'm going to do.

I got some good news. My dog made his first retrieve the other day, I was so effin proud you dont even know and I picked up a copy of training your retriever by James Free and am half way through. Definitely a lot of things I've learned, and over the past few days he's definitely been more obedient. Now I have to continue this as a lifestyle instead of some quick fix like a fad diet... Cheers y'all. And I'm located in harpers ferry wv to the man who asked. We hunt the shenandoah and upper potomac.

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If you do commit to this as a lifestyle like you mentioned then you'll get it. Just stay patient with him and remember he does want to make you happy he just doesn't always know how to do it.
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Re: Is buying duck land in eastern NC under 150k even worth

Postby NCGWP » Fri Jan 12, 2018 1:43 pm

One other thought, you need to hunt with the dog and let someone else shoot. Til he gets it.

And expect to continuously reinforce the "down" command (or whatever you use) with an ecollar nick everytime he breaks or whatever.

And congrats on the first retrieve. Its exciting. I've been there.

I myself have a young dog and have struggled this season getting on birds.
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Is buying duck land in eastern NC under 150k even worth it?

Postby Bluesky2012 » Fri Jan 12, 2018 4:11 pm

No, if the dog FLINCHES, a heeling stick is the proper correction.

Once the dog is pretty dang steady, it is a HIGH BURN until that dog turns and gets his rear end back in the blind. You better be ready for that break.

My dog was trained with a heavy hand at the line. When we went out on his first hunts, it was 100% time to train in the field and not hunt.

He has broken less than 5 times in his life, and doesn't wiggle or flinch during the hunt even with 50 geese landing and walking in the spread 20 yards away.

Blind etiquette and breaking are he most important thing. If a dog wiggles, whines or breaks, it is not worth having because if you can't get a duck down into range, and be able to safely shoot at it because of the dog, then there is no bird to even retrieve.


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Re: Is buying duck land in eastern NC under 150k even worth

Postby CatFan » Fri Jan 12, 2018 4:18 pm

Breaking and movement is bad but IMO whining is just annoying. I guess if it somehow was loud enough for the birds to hear it, its bad but if not its just annoying. I'm not saying I don't make my dog stop doing it, just providing a different perspective. Heck, I've heard that in English they think is cute. SMH.
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Re: Is buying duck land in eastern NC under 150k even worth

Postby Bluesky2012 » Fri Jan 12, 2018 5:38 pm

Haha and yeah dogs making any sound drives me nuts but I've seen dogs that get so excited the whine and bark when birds work and that is an absolute deal breaker:


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Re: Is buying duck land in eastern NC under 150k even worth

Postby CatFan » Fri Jan 12, 2018 7:24 pm

Bluesky2012 wrote:Haha and yeah dogs making any sound drives me nuts but I've seen dogs that get so excited the whine and bark when birds work and that is an absolute deal breaker:


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Agreed. Barking is a no-go.
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Re: Is buying duck land in eastern NC under 150k even worth

Postby murkywaters22 » Wed Oct 31, 2018 3:13 pm

Yeah it will cut it. Got a small empoundment in Hyde county for 70 and we have had to incredible seasons. My buddy is selling one right now with he has a spare house on the property he lets people stay in when they come hunt. He has had plenty of ducks since he has had the property. Been planting and flooding corn. It’s literally on the water if you cross the embankment and ditch you will be standing in the marsh. It’s around 150 if you still need a spot message me I’ll give you his contact info
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Re: Is buying duck land in eastern NC under 150k even worth

Postby spots_2016 » Thu Nov 01, 2018 7:24 pm

My dog was probably one of the worst duck dogs there is (he is scared of water liked to retrieve early and used to be scared of ducks) and I've taken him hunting on public land plenty of times, the best thing to do is take the time in the field to train your dog even during off-season and use a detachable lead.
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