New Guns & Gear for 2013

Take a look at our annual selection of the latest shotguns, ammo and accessories for waterfowlers. By Gary Koehler.

Waterfowling Guns

1. Beretta Xplor A400 Action Counts Shots and More Beretta recently announced the debut of the A400 Xplor Action, a semiautomatic shotgun now available in both 12- and 20-gauge designs. The Action is the first semiauto field shotgun to be equipped with an electronic device that counts fired shots. The GunPod component, which is housed in the pistol grip cap, performs other functions as well. These shotguns are lightweight and feature Beretta's Kick-Off recoil reducer, which uses two hydraulic dampeners. The receiver is copper-tinted. Chambered for 3-inch shotshells, the Action 12-gauge is available with a 26-, 28-, or 30-inch barrel. The 20-gauge model also has a 24-inch barrel option. 

2. New Browning A5 Handles 3 1/2-inch Shells Waterfowlers may well have seen this coming. Hot on the heels of last year's introduction of the new A5, Browning is now offering a magnum version of this popular autoloader chambered for 3 1/2-inch loads. The only shotgun to come with a 100,000-round or five-year warranty, the A5 now offers gunners an increased payload. This gun has all the standard features of Browning's redesigned A5—the humpback receiver, extra-long forcing cone, Invector-DS choke tube system, and Inflex II recoil pad. In addition, this 3 1/2-inch model is available in Mossy Oak's new Shadow Grass Blades camouflage pattern as well as black synthetic.   

3. Chiappa Firearms Creates Rare Triple-Barrel Shotgun If unique is what you seek, Chiappa Firearms has just the gun for you. The new Triple Crown three-barreled shotgun features a side-by-side configuration with a third barrel perched on top, providing a single sight plane. The Triple Crown is available in 12-gauge with 3-inch chambering and Rem-Choke choke tubes. This is a single-trigger shotgun; the barrels fire in a clockwise sequence with each pull of the trigger. The Triple Crown field model features 28-inch barrels and weighs in at 8 1/2 pounds.

4. CZ-USA 612 Wildfowl Magnum Has Rugged Design Made specifically for duck, goose, and turkey hunting, CZ-USA's 612 Wildfowl Magnum is a sturdy 12-gauge chambered for 3 1/2-inch shells. This pump gun features a 26-inch vent-rib barrel and is adaptable for interchangeable choke tubes. Modified and extra-full chokes are provided with this package.

5. Mossberg Redesigns 835 Ulti-Mag and 535 ATS Waterfowl Mossberg has been making firearms since 1919, so the company is hardly a stranger to duck hunters. This year, its 835 Ulti-Mag and 535 ATS waterfowl shotguns have been engineered with a special stock design incorporating Mathews Harmonic Damper technology. In addition, a redesigned thermoplastic recoil pad has been added to further soften recoil. The Mathews Damper is housed in the stock, which comes with interchangeable and raised combs.

6. Remington Introduces New Versa Max Sportsman While offering the same performance features and autoloading system as the original Versa Max, Remington's new Sportsman version comes with fewer bells and whistles—and a lower price. Don't look for an adjustable comb, length-of-pull kit, or molded grips. The Sportsman doesn't have them. But like the premium model, it still handles all loads—from 2 3/4-inch trap loads to 3 1/2-inch magnums. The Sportsman features self-cleaning pistons, a rotating bolt head, the Versa Port operating system, and the multiport gas system. This gun is available with a 26- or 28-inch barrel in black, Mossy Oak, and Real Tree finishes. As a proud partner of Ducks Unlimited, Remington helps support DU's conservation efforts.

7. Stoeger Introduces Longfowler Double Guns If you're a waterfowler who enjoys shooting a side-by-side or over/under, Stoeger has you covered. The company's Longfowler SxS is a 12-gauge side-by-side that features a single trigger, extractors, and 30-inch barrels. The Longfowler O/U has similar features, in an over/under design. Longfowlers feature matte-finished walnut stocks. The barrels are choked improved- cylinder and modified.

8. Weatherby PA-08 Pump Now Available in 20-Gauge Smaller-framed shooters or those introducing youngsters to hunting may want to check out Weatherby's new 20-gauge pump-action shotgun. The PA-08 features a black synthetic-molded stock, chrome-lined barrel, and lengthened forcing cone. This shotgun is chambered for 3-inch ammunition and comes with improved-cylinder, modified, and full chokes.

9. Winchester Super X Pump Waterfowl Hunter Gets New Finish Winchester's Super X Pump Waterfowl Hunter sports a fresh look with the addition of the Mossy Oak Shadow Grass Blades camouflage finish. The Super X Waterfowl Hunter 12-gauge is available with either a 3 1/2- or 3-inch chamber and with a 26- or 28-inch barrel. Other features include the Invector-Plus choke tube system, Truglo long-bead fiber-optic front sight, textured gripping surfaces, hard chrome chamber and bore, and crossbolt safety. As a proud partner of Ducks Unlimited, Winchester helps support DU's conservation efforts.

10. Benelli Offers M2 20-Gauge for Lefties Southpaws seeking a lighter autoloader may want to take a look at Benelli's new M2 20-gauge Left Hander. This M2 is chambered for 3-inch loads and features a 26-inch barrel with interchangeable choke tubes in cylinder, improved-cylinder, modified, improved-modified, and full. The package includes shims that allow you to adjust both drop and cast. Youngsters and those of smaller stature will find this gun's 5.8-pound weight an attractive asset. 

11. Charles Daly Introduces Left-Handed Semiautos and Pumps Charles Daly is now offering a wide variety of shotguns built for lefties. The lineup includes the Model 600 and Model 635 Master-Mag semiautos and the Model 300 and Model 335 Master-Mag pumps. Receivers are lightweight aircraft-grade aluminum alloy and barrels are available in 26- and 28-inch dimensions. Stock options include black synthetic, camouflage, or walnut.

12. TriStar Viper G2 Takes Left Turn Here's another one for the southpaws in the duck blind—TriStar's Viper G2 Left Hander. This shotgun is available in 12-gauge only and is chambered for 3-inch loads. The G2 features a 28-inch barrel, fiber-optic front sight, and improved-cylinder, modified, and full choke tubes. This shotgun is offered in black synthetic and Realtree MAX-4 camouflage.


1. Winchester Introduces New High Velocity Steel Winchester's Blind Side ammo has gone high velocity with a new 12-gauge load available in 3- and 3 1/2-inch cartridges. The 3 1/2-inch shotshells are loaded with 1 3/8 ounces of BBs, 1s, 2s, or 6s. The 3-inch shotshells deliver 1 1/8 ounces of BBs, 2s, 3s, or 6s. These loads are rated at a blistering 1,675 fps.

2. Hevi-Shot Speed Ball Rounds Out Nontoxic Lineup Environ-Metal continues to expand its roster, adding the high-velocity Speed Ball to its Hevi-Shot line. The shell gets its name from its unique design: a ball at the base of the wad accelerates the pellets without raising chamber pressures. Speed Ball shells are constructed with a layered-shot technology that propels the pellets at velocities of 1,635 and 1,650 fps. This ammunition is loaded with a mix of heavier than steel and heavier than lead pellets. The 3 1/2-inch shotshells are available in 1 1/2-ounce loads of BBs, 1s, or 2s. The 3-inch loads carry 1 1/4 ounces of BBs, 1s, or 2s.

3. Federal Premium Black Cloud Adds Velocity Black Cloud High Velocity is made for duck hunters seeking faster speeds and the shorter leads that come with it. Available in 12-gauge, 3-inch, 1 1/8-ounce loads of 3s and 4s, High Velocity features Black Cloud's Flitecontrol wad and Flitestopper steel pellets. This FS Steel shot is rated at 1,635 fps.

4. Kent Gamebore Premiers New TealSteel Shotshells Kent Gamebore Corporation has added a nifty new waterfowl load to its ammunition roster. TealSteel Waterfowl is a 12-gauge, 3-inch shotshell made especially for teal hunting. Each TealSteel cartridge carries a 1 1/4-ounce load of size 5 shot. This waterfowl load, which can also be used for small game, is rated at 1,350 fps.

Duck Call

Haydel's Entices with New Candied Carbon Kwacker Series When the guys at Haydel's started producing eye candy, they decided to pull out all the stops. Check out the company's new Candied Carbon Kwacker Series duck calls, available in both single- and double-reed designs. The single is built for open-water calling, while the double favors the raspy side. And colors? Grape, licorice, blueberry, orange . . . and more.


1. Drake's New Breeze-Ryder Decoys Enhance Movement Drake, a company with a long list of innovative products, is upping the ante with a new line of puddle duck decoys called Breeze-Ryder. These decoys are built to achieve maximum movement. They have built-in depth adjuster cord locks that allow for adaptation to all water levels, integrated cord wrap cleats with anchor points that provide for front or back rigging, and two extra anchor tabs for rigging decoys from multiple positions. Breeze-Ryder decoys come in standard mallard and blue- and green-winged teal models as well as magnum mallard, pintail, and black duck designs. Keels are sold separately.

2. Final Approach Adds Combo Pack Option Final Approach has added a number of new wrinkles to its decoy line. Included in the roster expansion are combo six-packs designed specifically for the Central/Pacific (C/P) and Mississippi/Atlantic (M/A) flyways. The CP package includes two pintails, two wigeon, and two green-winged teal decoys. The M/A decoy package features two gadwall, two wood ducks, and two green-winged teal.

3. Flambeau Adds Wigeon Decoys to its Storm Front Line Flambeau turned to master carver Tom Christie to create the prototypes for the company's new Storm Front wigeon decoys. Sold in six-packs, these wigeon measure 14 inches long and feature a keel design that allows for added motion on days with light wind. The paint scheme utilizes Flambeau's UVision Technology to match light reflectance; a proprietary polymer blend ensures paint adhesion and durability. Each package includes an active drake and active hen.

4. Greenhead Gear Issues Tim Newbold Lessers and Cacklers Greenhead Gear is now offering one-piece lesser Canada goose decoys. The Tim Newbold lessers feature 10 different body postures. They are packaged in active, feeder, harvester, and sleeper versions. The Tim Newbold cacklers are the only cackler decoys on today's market. This design is available in active and feeder six-packs and a harvester 12-pack. Both decoy styles are available in traditional fully flocked and painted versions. All Greenhead Gear decoys are officially licensed by DU, and your purchase of these products helps support DU's conservation efforts.

5. Removable Keels Add Versatility to Hard Core Goose Floaters Hard Core has created an assortment of goose decoys capable of double duty. The company's new floaters have a removable keel, allowing for easy use in the field or along the shore as well as in water. These decoys are available in Canada, specklebelly, and snow and blue goose designs. Lifelike body postures, realistic feather detail, and multiple head positions enhance the way these decoys perform in the field.

6. White Rock Snow Goose Decoys Get Ahead The White Rock Decoy Company, which specializes in snow goose hunting gear, has added plastic heads to its snow and blue goose windsock decoys. These specially engineered heads are lightweight and attach directly to the company's Tuf-Snap collapsible support system. The heads are adjustable for multiple positions.

Decoy Accessory

Decoy Carrying System Simplifies Transport Bag'em Outdoors, a relatively new company, is offering potential solutions to your decoy-hauling needs with several new products. Included among these handy accessories are an ATV decoy bag rack kit, a slotted decoy bag built for full-bodies, and a magnum bag designed to carry windsocks.

Waterfowling Apparel

1. Boreal Jacket Newest Addition to Sitka Gear Waterfowl Line Picking up where it left off last year in its first foray into waterfowl hunting apparel, Sitka Gear has added another nifty product with the introduction of the Boreal Jacket. Featuring Gore's Optifade Concealment Marsh camouflage pattern, the Boreal incorporates a Gore-Tex membrane with the warmth of 650-fill down. The hood is adjustable and the cuffs are water-sealing, providing optimal protection from the elements. This new-look jacket also features two chest and two shotshell pockets.

2. Browning's Dirty Bird Unveils New Wader Jacket and Bibs Building on a proven winner, Browning continues to enhance its popular Dirty Bird waterfowl clothing line with an insulated wader jacket and insulated bibs. Browning uses PrimaLoft Synergy insulation in this clothing, which is not only lightweight and quick-drying but also built for comfort and freedom of movement. The shells are made of Pre-Vent waterproof material. Available in Mossy Oak Shadow Grass Blades and Realtree MAX-4 camouflage patterns, this apparel features all the bells and whistles, including well-placed pockets, watertight zipper guards, adjustable cuffs, and more. 

3. Columbia's Omni-Heat Liner Retains Warmth Columbia's Omni-Heat Insulated Liner features a thermal reflective system that retains the warmth that your body generates. The lining is breathable and dissipates moisture and excess heat to help keep you comfortable in the field. Available in Realtree MAX-4 and Mossy Oak Bottomland camouflage, this liner repels water with an Omni-Shield outer shell. A Zip-In Interchange zipper system allows you to combine this liner with Columbia's Wader Widgeon Shell.

4. Cabela's Merino Wool Jacket Is Comfortable and Quiet In these days of high-tech everything, wool has nonetheless remained a staple in the realm of outdoor clothing. Cabela's new Diamantina jacket shell is made of 100 percent merino wool 220-gram knitted fleece. The lining is polyester high-count tricot knit. This combination provides warmth and breathability while remaining quiet and soft. This garment can be used as part of a layering system in extreme cold or as an outer jacket. Handy storage areas include two zippered hand-warmer pockets and a zippered chest pocket.

5. L.L. Bean Presents New Windproof Waterfowl Sweater Duck hunters have counted on wool's natural water repellency, warmth, and comfort for generations. L.L. Bean's Waterfowl Sweater provides all of that plus a Windstopper lining that blocks gusty winds. This sweater is made of merino lambswool and features armguards and shoulder shooting patches that are integrated into the knit for durability. A handy garment for layering, this sweater is available in loden or chocolate brown.

Waterfowling Accessories

1. Chef'sChoice Offers Knife Sharpener for Sportsmen Fishing and hunting knives, pocket knives, and knives with serrated blades will meet their match with the Chef'sChoice Sportsman 4635. This manual three-stage sharpener provides sharp and durable edges for a wide variety of knives. The Sportsman 4635 employs the company's 100 percent diamond abrasives in all three stages, allowing the user to sharpen blades from tip to handle. This sharpener can be used both right- and left-handed. 

2. Rig'Em Right Low Rider Layout Blind is User-Friendly Rig'Em Right says its new Low Rider provides for the quickest setup of any layout blind on the market. The key is that this blind does not incorporate the use of any pins. The doors actually snap on and off and nest inside the blind during transport. This blind is lightweight, features a low-profile design, and includes a padded seat, backrest, and headrest. A removable shoulder strap allows for easy transport. Flagging holes are located high on the blind for easy access.

3. Stor N Boat Makes a Splash Innovative and practical, the new Stor N Boat is sure to gain the attention of outdoorsmen seeking an easy way to access small bodies of water. Made of molded polyethylene, this portable boat measures eight feet long, and is designed with a cargo carrier tray that attaches to vehicle luggage racks. Weighing in at only 98 pounds, the Stor N Boat has a maximum capacity of 450 pounds, is rated for a two-horsepower outboard, and can also be propelled by oars, paddle, or trolling motor.

4. Victorinox Swiss Army Designs New Hunter XT Available this spring, the New Hunter XT from Victorinox combines form with function. This handy knife and multi-tool provides outdoorsmen with a variety of implements. The ergonomic dual-density handle is orange, making it easy to find if dropped. Included in the tool's body are a one-hand locking blade, gut hook, bone saw, Phillips screwdriver, reamer, and key ring.