Ducks not decoying.
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By frasier87 - 11/10/2013 4:14:29 PM
I'm a fairly new duck hunter and I have a question for some of you older veterans out there. I live/hunt in NE Oklahoma and I've had trouble getting the ducks to commit to my spread this year. Its early season so I'm throwing 12-24 mallard floaters, using a couple of quiver magnets on calm days for water movement and using a mojo duck as well. I have tried a few diffrent spreads, but the ducks just dont seem intrested, they look a bit then just fly on. I have talke to a few other guys in the area and they are having the same problems as well. So what is my best approach to this situation? Thanks for all youre help!
By Swamper - 11/10/2013 7:12:24 PM
Find out where they are landing. And hunt there. You can't make a duck land where he doesn't want.  If your area doesn't have a good food source then they'll keep on flying.  If you are hunting a resting area then perhaps you are not concealed enough or your toys don't look real to them. Try ditching the toys andxgovwith a simple jerk cord. 
Good luck !
By frasier87 - 11/10/2013 8:15:54 PM
Thanks for the reply, I have seen ducks on my spot and we've had considerable luck there. we're just taking more passing shots and fewer easy cupped wing shots. I have hunted 3 diffrent spots that have all produced ducks and regularly hold ducks and I've left out the mojo and other stuff trying to mix it up, but the jerk cord is the one thing a haven't gotten wet yet. I'll try it this week!
By Swamper - 11/10/2013 8:56:48 PM
They learn quickly after having been shot at. Often times,  simple, is the key. 
By JTFrisque - 11/10/2013 10:25:23 PM
First question. Is it public? If so what is everyone else doing? Do you seeing flashing wings everywhere you look. If thats the case then first thing is to cut the mojo. By the time they make it down to us they've learned that if they fly into that gun fire will follow. Are ducks rafting in big numbers, small numbers what. If you have a lot of ppl running a couple dozen in their spread, knock yours down. Run 6, 10 or less. Just something the birds arent use to seeing with hunters. Probably won't pull in the big groups but thats okay. Be honest, hows your calling? If its not that good then you're probably hurting yourself using it really. Calls are like instruments you can't perfect one over night. Use a whistle, you'll have far better luck using those than sounding like a kazoo. Theres simple things like are your decoys in shape, half floating in the water, decoy line on top shining? If so fix that, don't be afraid to get out and move decoys, if you ruin 1 flight of birds so what its better than watching group after group circle and circle then decide to go elsewhere. I'm not a big believer in setting up your decoys in X's, U's or J shaped. You dont see that in the wild, it feels like over the years I have success just chunking them out and making a hole where i'd like for them to land. If its warmer spread them out farther, colder then bring them in tighter. Late in the season, starting pairing up your birds and spread them out. Im a firm believer in being "natural." Like Ed said get out and scout more and find where to land. Because if your just running traffic (making them come to you) then 24 decoys is just not enough. Thats all I can think of for now, some one else will chime in with some more good advice. Good luck!
By frasier87 - 11/11/2013 5:38:35 PM
Well everyone else is using the same number of decoys, so maybe that is one thing to try. The ducks are averaging groups from 4-16. I agree with you about the natural spread, I dont try to over think that part and "arrange" them too much. On the calling..... Haha I can call well enough, I'm not winnning any competitions but I can do the job. I believe that less is more with calling. Here's the catch, I have a buddy who thinks he's Phill Robertson and he is determined that if they wont land, he'll make 'em. We actually had a little discussion in the blind and I'll ask you your opinion. Just how far out can a duck hear you ? Also isn't volume control (soft and low) important when you get them close? Honestly I believe thats the problem but I want to cross my T's and dot my I's before I go and tell my buddy to leave his calls in the truck. Thakns for youre time its really helpful to a young guy like me!
By frasier87 - 11/11/2013 5:39:58 PM
P.S. Yes it is public land.
By JTFrisque - 11/11/2013 10:37:10 PM
When there far out say 500 yards theyre not gonna hear every note of your high ball. But thats why your loud so they can hear a couple notes in and out. If ducks are working close then yeah volume is a big deal you don't wanna blow loud cause yeah you can blow them out. Another thing is also reading the ducks. A lot of ppl will say oh there not responding to the calls and yeah on public it seems most times less is more. But some days it pays to be aggressive where they literally want to be walked to the spread whether its by soft single sporadic quacks or clucks. We all have buddies who think they can blow a call and not know when to shut up but sometimes you just have to be like look either quit and youre not going next time. I dont like to do it but I've gotten so mad before I yelled at a buddy to shut up. Hardest part of calling is reading the birds. Change your sounds and pitch every time till you can find something they seem to like. Most of what I hunt is public and with Texas still being in a severe drought ducks are concentrated and so are the hunters. Its public but its not impossible. Just have to work a little harder thats all
By frasier87 - 11/12/2013 6:47:08 AM
Thanks for all youre help! I will keep it all in mind the next time I get in the blind!