By Steve Hickoff
Waterfowl hunters love their gear. It’s the off-season and you might be due for a makeover.
DECOYS: Haven’t used those half-dozen boxes of snow goose decoys you bought impulsively after watching a TV show on the subject? It happens. No worries. Sell them – somebody else will put the fakes to good use. Classified sections found on internet duck and goose hunting forums are a start. Then of course there’s eBay and other cyberspace sites.
Bonus Tip: Have other decoys that have met a similar fate? Donate them to a Ducks Unlimited banquet. The tax-deductible receipt could help you next April.
BOATS: Waterfowlers buy and sell boats all the time – big rigs and small ones alike. The best time of the year is summer when other hunters like you are trying to do their own makeover, and anglers are sometimes doing the same thing. As with decoys, advertise online or even simply sell the boat right on your property.
Bonus Tip: Looking to duck hunt smaller, calmer backwaters? A kayak is a great way to go, especially during early-season opportunities. Many companies offer cost-slashing deals in summer as the vacation weather hints at fading. Stay tuned for chances to pick one up. Get a feel for using it while fishing now before you duck hunt later. A small ‘yak can slide right into the back of your truck.
CALLING: Duck and goose calling instruction is just a few clicks away on your computer keyboard or mobile device. YouTube is full of free tips on pulling in everything from woodies to specklebellies.
Bonus Tip: And while you’re at it, why not pick up a new call or two? The time to practice is now.
WHEELS: Always wanted to buy a Yamaha ATV or SxS? Don’t wait until later to try one out. Now is the time to get those four wheels under you. They can help with blind building and decoy lugging later on as the season approaches and finally arrives.
Early goose and teal seasons are coming in September. Do your makeover now.