CREATE AN ILLUSION TO ATTRACT WATERFOWL   Leave a comment

Illusion is the key to getting waterfowl into range.  Just like the magician on television, the waterfowl hunter who can present the illusion of a safe harbor will take more birds.

In the pit, all the members of a hunting party can call.  Even the novice, who is not very good, can pitch in.  The illusion of sound coming from all parts of the decoy spread makes the situation all that much more realistic.  The stereophonic effort obtained out of the spread is much better than just having one expert caller doing all of the calling.

The goose hunter has to be an illusionist of sorts.  He must take advantage of all the props, i.e., the decoys, calls, flags and camouflage clothing, to create an illusion of a natural setting that will attract the birds.

Use of a flag does require some concealment but it does not hinder the hunter.  Having people use flags will bring the birds down until they actually land in the decoys.

The flag, decoys and calls all combine to pre-sell the birds on the naturalness of the setting.  Flags add the dimension of life to the decoys spread.  By way of explanation, waterfowl on the ground tend to blend with the landscape.  Motion decoys and flags attract the attention of flying birds to a spread.

Flags, kites and motion decoys imitate landing birds in a more vertical position than is imitated by the decoy.  Landing birds drop their bottoms, and are more vertical than are flying birds.  Waterfowl see this action everyday.  They and are not spooked by it.

It is best that hunters not use the motion decoys, flags and kites any more than necessary in the early season.  There is no sense in training them about these lures. Late in the season, it gives the illusion of sight and sound and allows the hunter the opportunity to change the look of a spread.  Versatility is one of the keys to drawing in waterfowl.

Some hunters vary their spreads by putting kite decoys or motion decoys on poles.  Hunters have used this variation for years with a delta-shaped flag that is similar in size and shape to live birds.  One can also vary flags with natural colors.  Colors gave more contrast.

By using flags on a long pole, the birds assume that the flag is a bird landing.  A variation was to place the flag on a long pole sticking it in the ground upwind in the spread.  The wind would provide the movement.  This allows the hunter to use the hand-held pole and flag to attract the birds’ attention.  Then put the flag away and the wind flag serves as the attractant.  The result is no correlation to the location of the hunter.  The focus of the birds’ attention is away from any hunter movement as he readies himself for the shot.

Whether using flags, kites, motion decoys or whatever, the waterfowl hunter who works at creating an illusion, it the person who gets the birds.  He, who examines his presentation, works to improve it, is the one bringing in the birds.

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