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Waterfowling Tip: Quick Concealment

Here’s a tip to hide the shine from your hands and face on your next trip to the field.

Ridiculously Smart Decoy Strategies

If ducks and geese in your area have learned to recognize traditional decoy spread configurations, it's time to leave complacency behind and invent a new decoy strategy. The following decoy spreads were devised by savvy waterfowl hunters to create a unique look in specific habitats to appeal to even the wariest birds.

Shotgunning: Shot Size Selection

A range of shot sizes will work for any bird. In fact, on the sides of ammo boxes there are little charts that offer different size recommendations. The following advice will help you narrow down those choices to pick the best size for your specific hunting needs.

Five Things Every Waterfowler Must Do in April

The last days of the 2014–2015 waterfowl season are now a faint memory, but for duck and goose hunters this is a year-round game, and there's a mountain of work to be done. This to-do list focuses on certain aspects of waterfowling that could use a little more attention, so, if you're just sitting around waiting on September, here are some tasks every duck hunter must do before opening day.

Waterfowler's Notebook: Finesse Calling

Sometimes ducks respond best to aggressive calling, but at other times they work better when you use a little finesse. This is usually the case when there hasn't been an influx of new ducks for several days and local birds are decoy-shy from hunting pressure. It's also true when the weather is warm, the sky is gray, and the wind is calm—or under any combination of these factors. Such conditions can make ducks wary, and spooky birds tend to shy away from throw-the-kitchen-sink-at-'em calling. (By Wade Bourne)

Field Notes: Concealment

DU TV Host Zach Pederson gives tips for staying hidden. Visit ducks.org/DUTV for other DU TV Better Waterfowling Tips and more.

DU-TV Better Waterfowling Tip: Adding movement to a goose spread

Wade Bourne, DU magazine editor-at-large, explains different options for hunters to add movement to their goose spread.

2013 Duck Numbers Remain Strong

The US Fish and Wildlife Service today released its report on 2013 Trends in Duck Breeding Populations, based on surveys conducted in May and early June. Total populations were estimated at 45.6 million breeding ducks in the surveyed area. This estimate represents a 6 percent decrease from last year's estimate of 48.6 million birds, and is 33 percent above the 1955-2012 long-term average.

Calling Tips: Hunting and calling from a pit blind

Field Hudnall explains how to call from a pit blind.

Keep It Simple

Following are eight ways in which I've simplified my waterfowling and also increased my enjoyment of the sport by planning better, hunting smarter, and fine-tuning my priorities.

Ducks Unlimited Online Waterfowl Journal

This season, DU members can log all of their waterfowl hunts with the new online waterfowl journal application.

Get Ready for Duck Hunting Season

Though it can be difficult to imagine during these hot summer months, another waterfowl season is fast approaching.

Lease, Guide or Freelance?

When you get down to it, there are really only three ways most of us can hunt waterfowl. You can pay to lease a spot. You can hire a guide for the day. Or you can freelance on either public or private land (with permission). Which is better?

How to Make a Jerk Cord for Decoys

Jim Ronquest, RNT-V producer, explains how to make and use a jerk cord.

Five Tactics for Late-Season Ducks

It's late season, when the sport's true diehards are like NFL linemen in the playoffs. Veteran waterfowlers share 5 expert tactics to help successfully end the season.

Mid-Season Magic

The middle of the season is possibly the most challenging time for waterfowl hunters. During this period, ducks and geese are notorious for skirting decoy spreads, ignoring calls, and in some cases, simply disappearing.

Hunting Early Season Migrating Ducks

If you've never stared down a squadron of blue-winged teal screaming across the shallows of a harvested rice field or scattered gadwall decoys across a bed of smartweed, you're missing out on some great early season waterfowl hunting opportunities. Check out the following advice on how you can get a jump-start to the hunting season.

Duck Hunting Journal App for iPhone and Android

The DU Waterfowler's Journal is the only mobile app designed exclusively for waterfowl hunters to keep a detailed log of each trip to the field. NOW FREE on both the Android and iPhone platforms.

Mastering the Comeback Duck Call

A flight of ducks shows interest in your decoys, but is still wary. As the birds swing downwind, their body language shows indecision. Some of the ducks seem anxious to decoy. Others want to continue on their way. This is the time for the comeback call.

Know Your Firearm

Jim Ronquest of RNT shares tips of the trade about knowing your firearm.

Duck Calling Video: Use Back Pressure

John Stephens, president of RNT calls, explains how a duck call's bore size can change the sound of each call. Using more back pressure, created with a smaller bore, callers can create different sounds needed in different hunting situations.

Antonio Jones Duck Calling Routine

Antonio Jones, from Little Rock, Ark., and Rich-N-Tone Pro Staff member, goes through his routine following the Kansas City Cabelas Open Duck Calling contest. Jones won the $10,000 first place prize.

South Dakota Spectacular

Gary Koehler, DU Magazine senior editor, joined Avery Outdoors Pro-Staff members, Martin Hesby and Tyson Keller on an amazing South Dakot mallard hunt. This video captures a few moments of the "South Dakota Spectacular." For more on this hunt, read the July/Aug 2011 issue of Ducks Unlimited Magazine. (Video by David Sams)

Waterfowler's Notebook: Keeping a Hunting Journal

Wade Bourne shares insights into the benefits of keeping a hunting journal and shares tips on how you can preserve your own memories from the field.

Winter Duck Hunting Strategies

Deep winter offers duck hunters both challenge and opportunity. The late season cuts hunters little slack, but the last few weeks can also provide some of the best shooting of the year.

Ducks Unlimited iPhone App

The Ducks Unlimited iPhone app is new and improved with more than a dozen features this season. Free for a limited time, so get yours today!

Hunting Flight Ducks

This is the time of year that waterfowlers in mid-latitude states live for, when every major cold front can bring new flights and hot shooting.

Ask the right way

There's no question that receiving permission to hunt on private land is a challenge these days in many parts of the country, but hunters can still gain access to prime hunting ground if they approach landowners in a polite and upfront manner.

What Else Lurks in Your Duck Blind?

Permanent duck blinds stay out in the wilderness, sometimes for decades. These structures become part of the environment and remain empty for months. Even during duck season, hunters may only visit their blinds a few times.

Waterfowl Hunting Tips

A complete listing of duck and goose hunting tips.

Decoy Strategies for Geese

Tyson Keller, one of the nation's top goose hunters, offers tips to capitalize on proven bird habits and put more geese in the decoys this season.

12 Tips for Hunting Geese

An all-star lineup of professionals share their secrets to goose-hunting success

Duck Scouting 101

Year-round scouting leads to success.

Passing on the Tradition

Research is providing valuable information that will help us better understand what we can do to recruit more waterfowlers and other hunters now and in the future.

Hunting FAQs

Frequently asked questions about Ducks Unlimited Hunting program.

Public Duck Hunting Etiquette

Everything you learned in kindergarten about getting along with others applies in the duck blind, too.

10 Safety Tips for All Hunters

Safety must remain a number one concern for all hunting. Keep these tips in mind while waterfowl hunting this season.

Safety First: Live to Hunt Another Day

Waterfowl hunters must keep safety in mind as they pursue their pleasures

Staying Focused in the Off-season

Q&A with waterfowl hunters can help you prepare for next season

Decoying Ducks in Arkansas Timber

Decoying ducks in the Arkansas timber sometimes requires a soft touch.

Duck Blind Snacks

A variety of imaginative foods find their way into hunters' blind bags.

Great Rivers for Waterfowling

America's rivers are rich with waterfowling opportunities and traditions.

Outfitting a Duck Boat

Safety needs to remain a number one concern when duck hunting from a boat. This checklist can help keep you safe and offers some handy hunting suggestions.

Shooting Dogs...With a Camera

Getting a few good photos of your best friend can add to the great memories of your hunt.

10 Commandments of Public Duck Hunting

Rules to live by when you're hunting public land

Game Plan for Late-Season Ducks

Adapt to changes in birds' behavior to enjoy top-notch duck hunting in the final weeks of the season

Shades of Gray: Getting Gadwalls to Decoy

Some days gadwalls decoy readily; other days they can be downright difficult

Documenting the Hunt with Photos

Photo opportunities are all around you

Seeing Differently

Ways to give an ordinary photo a new look

Deep Freeze Ducks

Do Something Different in Late Season

The Fowl Men

Famous waterfowl hunters share their secrets to success

Duck Hunting on a Budget

Here's how cost-conscious waterfowlers can enjoy high-quality hunting without breaking the bank.

Photography: Working Low Light

Hunting photography tips for low-light conditions

Photography: Foul Weather Concerns

By far, the biggest concern for a waterfowl hunter with a camera in the blind is the weather and the surrounding elements.

Video Tips for the Duck Blind

Boost the quality of your video footage from amateur to professional

Clean Up Your Call

From cleaning your call to practicing in the field and at home, you can improve your duck calling technique all year long.

Buyers Tips for Duck Boats

A duck boat can open up a whole new world of hunting opportunities for waterfowlers. But buying a fully equipped boat can be a significant financial investment, so it’s important to make a good decision on every aspect of your purchase.

Insider Guide to Public-Land Duck Hunting

Veteran public-land waterfowlers share their secrets for finding great hunting

15 Great Places to Hunt Waterfowl

When it comes to planning a waterfowl hunting trip, location is everything.

How Duck Hunters Can Change History

By supporting conservation today, all of us can help ensure a bright future for waterfowl and our sport.

Waterfowling's Perfect Storm

Knowing how to read a weather map may be as crucial to your hunting success as decoys and calls.

Pre-Season Prep

Get a jump on the hunting season with these tips!

High Desert Waterfowling

A Nevada duck and goose hunt opens a door to waterfowling’s distant past

Point-Blank Waterfowling

These tips will help you get more birds feet down over the decoys.

15 Veteran Tips for Waterfowlers

Hang around even the most tight-lipped hunters long enough and they will share good advice, particularly during the off-season—you just have to be listening when they do.

Mega Decoy Rigs

In the right situation, a massive decoy spread can be especially effective.

A Valentine's Day Special: Love is in the Blind

This is the story of two waterfowl hunters who found love, and the unique proposal that joined them forever – both in and out of the blind.

Late-Season Decoy Spreads

Overcoming the challenges of winter waterfowling requires both realism and creativity.

Gadwall Hunting Tips

Cold-weather hunting tips

Let waterfowl behavior guide you this winter

Duck Scouting Success With Online Tools

New technology for duck hunters

Warm-Weather Duck Hunting Tips

Ducks and geese change their habits during warm spells, and so should hunters.

Notes from Duck Country

Expert advice for hunting ducks in a variety of classic habitats

Hunting a Bad Wind

By making the right adjustments, you can overcome the challenges posed by an unfavorable wind direction.

Tips for Early Teal

We were among several hunters at the boat ramp arranging gun cases, decoys and blind bags before joining the squadron of aluminum crafts on the lake. The September air was hot, muggy and filled with so many mosquitoes that killing only two of them in a swat was a product of poor timing.

Blind Faith

With today's array of portable blinds, waterfowlers can be more mobile than ever.

Catahoula Canvasbacks

This vast Louisiana lake has long been a haven for these prized diving ducks.

The Duck Hunter's List

Following is a compilation of items that might be included on a duck hunter's "life list" to help you get inspired on a list of your own.

Biggest Mistakes in Duck Hunting

Here’s how to avoid the most common errors committed by waterfowl hunters.

Think Like a Duck

Adapt your hunting strategies to match shifts in the duck's behavior

20 Portable Duck Blinds

With today's array of portable blinds, waterfowlers can be more mobile than ever

The X Factor

It's a dilemma nearly every public-land waterfowler experiences. Ducks or geese are piling into a particular spot, and it's not where you are. Flock after flock circles and pitches in as you watch and wish.

Build a Better Duck Blind

Tips for building a better blind this season

15 Tips for Duck Hunters

DU members share their secrets about hunting tactics and gear

Think Small For Ducks

Some of the best duck hunting can be found in some of the smallest, least obvious spots

Teal, We Meet Again

If you haven't tried teal hunting yet, you should

Scouting - Waterfowler Early Installment Plan

The overgrown boat trail led to who-knows-where, but I was determined to find out where. I nosed my boat into the small opening in the reeds. It was barely wide enough to slide through. The ditch ran straight into the cover some 30 yards, then it took a curving bend to the right. I jockeyed the throttle on my Go-Devil motor, powering over the shallow muck and decaying vegetation.

Fooling Today's Highly Educated Waterfowl

Intense hunting pressure is making ducks tougher to hunt every year. Here's how to fool them.

Little Things, Big Differences

In duck hunting, sometimes little things make big differences in the number of birds you bag.

Reservoirs of Waterfowl

We were in Kansas, on a reservoir built for power generation and to store spring floodwaters, but the ducks didn't know that. They thought this lake was strictly for them, and they fogged it.

How to Hunt Moving Waters

Moving waters comprise the last great frontier in North American waterfowl hunting. These are the large rivers, small streams, and tidal marshes that bisect and border this continent.

Hunting Light

Boat and trailer. Outboard motor. Portable blind. Life jacket, heater, spotlight, paddle, push pole, anchor, rope, fire extinguisher, spare battery, bilge pump. Decoys. Decoy bags. Waders, shells, calls. Wing-spinners. Water shakers, spare string, spare anchors, spare AA batteries, jerk string rig.

Hiding in Plain Sight

As hunting pressure in the United States has reached an all-time high in recent years, ducks and geese are becoming conditioned to avoid any cover that can possibly conceal waterfowlers. Heavily hunted mallards, for example, often leave traditional resting areas in marshes, sloughs, and flooded timber at dawn to spend their day loafing on big water, mud flats, gravel bars, and puddles in harvested grain fields, where they are less likely to encounter hunters.

Green-Timber Greenheads

Timber hunting is the purest form of duck hunting and in many ways the hardest

Forecast Your Duck Hunting Success: Weather Matters

Weather conditions have an enormous influence on duck hunting success. To make the most of their days afield, waterfowlers must understand weather patterns and how they affect bird behavior.

Fight the Ice on Your Next Duck Hunt

The Lowdown on Layout Hunting

Given a choice, most waterfowlers would hunt in natural wetlands with plenty of cover in which to conceal themselves, such as flooded timber, salt marshes, or cattail sloughs. But the fact is, better duck and goose hunting is often available in open-water habitats largely bereft of vegetation like flooded croplands, moist-soil impoundments, and reservoirs.

Ducks the Color of Autumn

Shooting a wood duck in flooded timber is like trying to gun down a stone released from a slingshot, only harder

Safety First: Live to Hunt Another Day

Waterfowl hunters must keep safety in mind as they pursue their pleasures

Timber Tactics of the Duck Commander

Hunting Ducks on Dry Land

Innovative hunters are discovering that dry-field hunting can be very productive

Big-River Ducks

30 Helpful Hints for Waterfowlers

Would you like to improve your waterfowling success and make each trip a bit safer and more enjoyable? These 30 tips could help!

20 Tips For Better Waterfowling

These helpful hints from some of today's most innovative duck and goose hunters might pay off big this season

Words That Define Us

In waterfowling literature, one can find many wonderful passages by great writers that describe what it truly means to be a duck hunter.

The Wild, Wacky World of Waterfowling

These amazing facts and other bits of information may very well surprise, bewilder, intrigue and entertain you!

The Timber Experience

Tips for hunting flooded timber and a hunt this author will never forget.

Take a New Hunter

Help build a strong future for waterfowling and conservation by recruiting a new hunter into the fold.

Setting the Hunting Season

An in-depth look at the complex, science-based process that safeguards waterfowl populations while maximizing hunting opportunity.

A Duck Hunter of the Finest Caliber

Hunting is a sport of possession, but I like hunting most with men who treasure those things about hunting that can't be possessed. Vernon Baker, who has been my duck hunting companion for close to 25 years now, is one of those men.

Top Duck Destinations

Where America's most popular species congregate

Decoy Spreads for Canada Geese

Canada goose decoy strategies from expert hunters across the country

10 Quick Blind-Building Tips

Take your blind building and placement seriously.

10 ATV Tips for Waterfowlers

From battery storage to oil changes, here are some recommendations to keep your ATV in tip top shape year round.

The Sooner the Better

When the weather turns cold, thousands of waterfowl pour into Oklahoma’s northern tier.

Big-water Action on Small Ponds

Getting the most out of your small-water hunting experience

Ground Game - Layout Blinds

Lightweight, portable layout blinds provide effective concealment in a variety of waterfowl habitats.

Prairie Sampler

A week of mixed-bag wingshooting in Saskatchewan reunites old friends and begins a new tradition.

Build the Perfect Duck Boat

Justin Tackett gives an overview of his perfect duck boat.

Tips for Storing Your Hunting Gear

Adding a method to the madness

The Minimalists

By sticking to the basics, these waterfowlers have found success without spending a fortune on gear and gadgets.

Snow Days

Veteran waterfowlers describe their most unforgettable hunts in winter weather.

Duck Hunters Rainbow

Major rain events can lead to some of the season’s best hunting.

Diver Quest

A layout-gunning adventure for diving ducks on the broad waters of southern Ontario.

Hunting on the Edge

Some waterfowlers go to extremes in pursuit of ducks and geese.

Hunting Midday Ducks

If you routinely head in by midmorning, you might be missing out on some great hunting.

Scouting for Ducks

Improve your hunting by locating new hunting spots and by keeping tabs on migration

Ducks 2050

What might the coming decades hold for waterfowl and duck hunters?

10 Classic Combos

Make the most of your vacation time with these combination trips for waterfowl, upland birds, and much more.

Tips for Hunting-shy Ducks

Finding Hidden Duck Holes

River Hunting Strategies for Ducks

A hard freeze is good time to hunt river ducks

Strategies for Duck Hunting on Public Land

Public hunting areas can provide top quality shooting

4 Steps to a Simple, Temporary Duck Blind

Duck blinds run the gamut of sizes, designs and features, based on the whims and resources of their owners. Some are very basic, while others are elaborate.

Hunting Across Canada: Peace River Mixed Bag

The vastness of northern Alberta is home to a variety of up-close waterfowling.

September Teal: Mayhem in the Marsh

5-Tips For Duck Hunting in Extreme Weather

Here are 5 excellent tips for hunting ducks in extreme weather.

Duck Hunting in Flooded Grainfields

Flooded grainfields are consistently among the most productive waterfowling hotspots

Words of Wisdom from DU Members

Words of wisdom from DU members across North America

Duck Clubs 101

How to pool your resources with others to secure your own piece of waterfowling heaven.

Mallard Heaven

A journey to one of North America's most famous waterfowling regions reveals why eastern Arkansas is still so important for greenheads and those who would pursue them.

Ducks Unlimited and Hunting

Participation in waterfowl hunting fuels the passion of many DU members to give something back to the resources that make their outdoor experiences so enjoyable. DU was founded by a group of waterfowl hunters in 1937, and today 90 percent of DU members are hunters. Through the support of these sportsmen, DU has been able to conserve more than 12.5 million acres of habitat across North America in the areas that are most important to ducks and geese.

The Great Cover-Up

Staying hidden from the keen eyes of ducks and geese is an age-old concern.

Road Trip - Moblie Duck Camp

The concept of a mobile duck camp may seem offbeat to some wildfowlers, but this can be a fun and economical way to get to where the birds are.

Greenheads - How To Hunt Mallard Country

Modern Day Duck Boats

Whether you buy the complete package off the showroom floor or build it yourself one piece at a time, your duck boat can be something truly special

Great Moments in Waterfowling

A look back at the people, events, and inventions that have shaped modern waterfowling.

Passage to Alaska

The package includes waterfowl and upland bird hunting, world-class fishing, first-class accommodations, and idyllic scenery that you will never forget.

Be Mobile for Ducks

When the ducks won't come to you, it may be time to go and find them

10 Tips to Get Ready for Duck Season

Though we can't see it coming for the summer haze, another duck season is fast approaching. There's much to be decided, and much work to be done. Following are 10 tips every waterfowl hunter should consider right now to be ready for opening day!

Winds of Fortune

The Year-Round Waterfowler Hunter

Bummed out now that duck season is over? These activities may help fill the long stretch before opening day.

Hunting Position Statement

Hunters Do More For Wildlife

Ducks Unlimited study finds hunters are more active in conservation efforts than non-hunters

Duck Banding Stories

Harvesting a banded duck or goose is exciting in itself, but sometimes the ensuing tales are simply amazing.

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