Feeding Decoy Rig
If I’m hunting where ducks are feeding, I like to clump the decoys together in a feeding situation. When you see ducks feeding, the majority are not spread out from each other, they are together and active.
If I am hunting puddle ducks like mallards, black ducks, gadwalls, widgeon, teal and pintails in open water, I like to make a pocket upwind in front of the blind to funnel the ducks into shooting range. I like to leave a few outside of the clump to look like the new arrivals just showed up and swam into the action. You will also want movement in this rig. There are some great innovations on the decoy market for moving decoys and underwater propulsion system that splash water. These can be expensive but make a difference especially on real calm days with no wind. If you don’t want to splurge on mechanical driven decoys you can always rig a jerk string to a few decoys to give movement. A jerk string rig is basically a few anchored decoys tied to a bungy cord that is then tied to a string that you jerk for movement when ducks are circling your rig.
If they are divers like canvasbacks, ringnecks, and redheads, you can run a straight line of about 10-15 decoys downwind from the main clump. Divers look like this when they feed: the main group keeps moving and diving for food while 10 or 15 follow the pack in a straight line. When the divers decoy into your rig they will follow the line into the main group and land among the main clump so you will want to leave a landing pocket for them.
This type of set up works best if you are hunting near a food source. If you are hunting in a roosting area you may want to customize your set up to look more natural. This where scouting becomes critical in increasing your chances of a successful hunt.
Give it a try and let us know what your experience was with this kind of set up at firstname.lastname@example.org