Got any hunters here who swear by using small steel shot for ducks? Looking to start a discussion and maybe learn something here. Recently talked with someone who swears by using #5-7 steel shot through a tight choke for all ducks, out to 40 yards. It seems like this approach might be valid. From birds I've skinned, I haven't noticed any that had considerable tissue around the head or neck region (in comparison to torso) or much at all on the wings. Seems that if you were using a tight choke with a dense pattern of smaller shot, you could hit and penetrate these areas relatively easily. Such a pattern should contain fewer holes and be able to put multiple pellets onto smaller areas. I have almost always shot #2 steel. Most resources advise using shot with enough KE to penetrate the bodies of birds, but I have noticed on birds that are shot in the body (without hitting the spinal cord), they often sail a ways and then die of internal trauma -- i.e. you still have cripples. It seems that if you could increase the chances of head/neck hits, or at least cause sufficient damage to the bird's wings to bring it down and then take a headshot on the water, that it would be more effective. I'm willing to try #4 or #5 shot through a tighter choke to see if this approach is effective or not. Feel free to tell me that my thinking is totally wrong here -- just looking to learn something.