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Thread: New to the duck hunting

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2007

    Default New to the duck hunting

    I went to the Palmer Hay flats at the mouth of Cottonwood Creek Saturday for my second duck hunting outing. I walked along way through the swamps, only to jump five birds and missed them all. I was using 3" Remington Nitro 4 shot and a full choke. I tried to put the bead on the head of the bird as they flew. Should I go up to 3 Shot? Is a full choke a good choice? I don't have any decoys but would I be better off sitting in one spot and waiting for birds to fly over me?
    I shot one duck last week at the mouth of Knick River that tasted so good I had to shoot some more.

  2. #2
    Member Alaska Gray's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Anchorage, Alaska, United States


    I use full when I sit over my decoys only cause I'm pretty far away from them. When jump shooting I switch to modify choke. If I know IE in the morning bids will be flying in an area I'm hunting I will use decoys. And if that same area latter in the day the ducks have laid down in the tall grass and not flying I will go jump shooting.
    Living the Alaskan Dream
    Gary Keller
    Anchorage, AK

  3. #3
    Member AK Ray's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2006
    South Central

    Default Shoot them in the lips

    The best wing shooting advice ever provided to me was never look at a birds body. Only look at its head and aim for a spot a few inches infront of its beak. The farther away the more inches in front of the beak your bead should be.

    If you are jump shooting the ducks and they are more than 6 feet off the ground when you shoot with the bead on their head your shot is going under them. If your gun mount is a little off you may be shooting over their heads. And with a full choke if they are less than 40 yards away you may never hit one until you get your timing down to perfection. But then you will have a feather bag of feather impregnated meat mush if you hit them anywhere but the head. No matter how you marinade it you can't fix the "feather marinade" taste.

    Ducks size makes their speed less obvious.

    To hit a rising bird you need to swing through their body from below to judge their speed and direction. Make a note of their wing tips. If the wings are not level then they are turning to which ever wing is down at the tip. Adjust your swing accordingly. As soon as the bird disappears behind your barrel and your bead is over (in front of where they are moving to) the bird, pull the trigger.

    When shooting birds from behind as they are rising you have to remember that their back is the boniest part of the skeleton and you need a lot of power to punch through it. You should go to a larger shot size. #4 steel is good for decoying ducks. If your jumped birds are far away, over 30 yards, then go with #2 and a more open choke as Gray recommends.


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