If you’re just looking to start duck hunting, then you probably have a ton of questions. What equipment do I need? What kind of camo should I wear? Where do I go? Where do I get my equipment from? Each and every decision you make in the preparation process will ultimately impact your success on the hunt, and each and every piece of equipment you buy can be the difference between success and failure. That being said, selecting the right pieces is essential. But which pieces of duck hunting gear are considered essential?
First things first, you need to get a gun. The most commonly used gun is the 12-gauge shotgun. Most people prefer a semi-automatic one, but pump-action shotguns are also fine. You must use non-toxic shots, and your shot size should match the type of duck you’re hunting. A number two shot is recommended for shooting ducks and mallards. Also, consider the type of choke. The purpose of chokes is to make your shot spread in shorter distances so you can take closer shots, or make the shot stay tighter for longer shots.
Next, you’ll need a duck decoy. Decoys play a huge role in the success of your hunt. When buying a duck decoy, you don’t necessarily have to go with an expensive one. However, you still want to get quality for what you pay. Alternatively, if you’re a skilled DIY-er, you can probably put together a decoy yourself. You can create a duck decoy in many different ways, so get creative, or just turn to the internet for some ideas.
Further, you’ll need to perfect your duck call. Duck calling can be extremely fun and rewarding, and it can either make you feel like a duck whisperer or scare them off. If you’re interested in getting into duck calling, you’ll need to practice a lot. It’s almost an art form – you’ll need to know when to do it, what to do, and how soft or loud you need to be. Again, watch some instructional videos on YouTube to get better faster.
And of course, you need camouflage clothing. The right type of camouflage is the one that hides your silhouette in the environment you’re hunting in. So if you’re hunting in a dead grass area, you’ll want a light, grassy camo pattern. If you’re hunting in the woods, on the other hand, you’ll want something bark-like or leafy. The clothing should also be appropriate to wear in the temperature you’ll be hunting. Generally, you want something that’s breathable and light, because even if you’re hunting in a colder climate, you can always wear more layers below the outer camo layer.