Snow Goose Hunting Forum Sponsors

Snow geese small spreads?

Discussion in 'Snow Goose Hunting Forum' started by gloszz, Aug 1, 2017.

  1. gloszz

    gloszz New Member

    Messages:
    5
    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2017
    Hello,

    Just wondering what everyone thinks is an ok/ minimal number of decoys to bring in snow geese? Last year I only had two dozen socks and brought in a few closer than when I was using 20 dozen socks and a mix of full bodies this spring!

    I am hunting in Alberta, so for the fall I think we are first on their pit stop to get shot haha.:grvn
     
  2. snowbird

    snowbird Senior Refuge Member

    Messages:
    252
    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2003
    Location:
    Nodak
    We've shot 4 man limits in Saskatchewan with 7 dozen full bodies and no gadgets. Shot lots of limits over 10 dozen wind socks on windy days and sun. I laugh when I see guys set out a 1000 wind socks in Saskatchewan. Totally unnecessary. If you go small try to hide outside the spread. It's the hide that does you in not the decoys.
     
    Dean Nelson, explorer17 and h2ofwlr like this.
  3. Juvie Juke Box

    Juvie Juke Box Senior Refuge Member Sponsor

    Messages:
    179
    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2017
    If you had success running a small spread, stick with it and fine tune things like your hide and quality sound. Hide is the most important obviously after being on the X, but when being able to run a caller sound quality and volume levels is a big key to finishing birds. Snowbird makes a great point that in smaller spread situations trying to not be in the decoys is a great tool for success. You don't need to run a huge spread with tons of trinkets to be successful at shooting snows. We have basically quit using rotary's unless there is virtually no wind, and flyers are basically non existent in our spreads anymore. A flag just like honker hunting is very effective. A small realistic sounding spread on a day with good wind and sun with key flagging is a recipe for some great shoots. We are going to be extensively trying smaller spreads this coming Fall and next spring as well.
     
    Last edited: Aug 1, 2017
  4. KID CREOLE

    KID CREOLE Elite Refuge Member

    Messages:
    2,258
    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2002
    Location:
    San Pedro, Ca.
    It can vary big time.

    There's a huge difference decoying adult snows and juvie ross geese, yet they are both considered snows.

    Chopping up flocks of dumb juvie ross geese is not decoying snows IMHO
     
    CORONA 1 and explorer17 like this.
  5. hammbone

    hammbone Senior Refuge Member

    Messages:
    164
    Joined:
    May 21, 2008
    Location:
    Montana
    I went to Canada with about the same spread the first time plus 120 Canada's
    Killed 3 snows a day on average hunting the x. There will always be the once in a life time miracle day when a guy killed them over 6 white trash bags. If you want to have good hunt on the regular you need 1000 socks e callers and lastly motion decoys can help. If you use full body's or TNT shells you need 400 to 600 if you want to have a fair shot everytime you set. You might only kill 3 with these spreads but the next day might be unreal. There is a lot of good info on this page spend 20 hours reading treads you will be able to make good decisions at that point.
     
  6. ArmChair Biologist

    ArmChair Biologist Senior Refuge Member

    Messages:
    134
    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2016
    Location:
    MN
    The juvies eat up rotary's and fliers...although when it's strictly adults I don't think either one actually helps much, unless it's rotary's when there's no wind. I decoyed a couple pairs of rossies over 20 sillosocks one spring day in North Dakota. They were adults too. :D
     
  7. h2ofwlr

    h2ofwlr Elite Refuge Member

    Messages:
    16,712
    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2001
    Location:
    In the land of 100,000 drained wetlands
    There is a learning curve on how to set small (under 200) spreads. And another learning to set mixed spreads is a another learning curve.
    Are you going to get big flocks to come in? Very unlikely. But I am happy with the 10 or less flocks and the singles and doubles, etc.
    Often I hunt alone, setting 40-80 snows, + 30-50 Canada's + some mallards shells it's enough work in the dark for 1 guy. :yes Even with 2 of us, I only set 150 decoys total.
    Being where they want to be is the key on small spreads.
     
    explorer17 and KID CREOLE like this.
  8. Dean Nelson

    Dean Nelson Moderator Goose Hunting/North Dakota Moderator

    Messages:
    8,419
    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2002
    Location:
    Bismarck North Dakota
    If your on the x with no competition from a real flock you can get away with very few decoys because you don't have to convince them to land just show them where the land. This is often far easier with a small spread of full body's and we'll hidden blind vs mass spreads of the same old thing they see 10 times a day for months. Now don't try and hide 10 guys in a spread of five doz decoys but if its just one or two guys it tends to work extremely well.
     
  9. h2ofwlr

    h2ofwlr Elite Refuge Member

    Messages:
    16,712
    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2001
    Location:
    In the land of 100,000 drained wetlands
    Actually I differ on that, I on purpose never fire at the 1st flock of Snows coming off the roost as they play follow the leader, and if you bust them they often will shift a 1/2 - 1 mile to the side - what you don't want to happen as you want to be in their flyway. Some of my best hunts is when over a small rise, upwind of me a 1/2-1 mile, with a good (15+MPH) wind they settle in feeding. Yes the bigger flocks will ignore me, but the singles, 3s, and 7s will keep me more than entertained when they are at less then 30yds above me. :reader To be clear, yes I let many big and small flocks go right on over at 60+ yds, but it is a patience game, as the following flocks will generally keep getting lower and lower, and and sometimes actually cup right in and land in my small decoy spread.:yes And I've had it when the highest they were at was 70yds all morning long with an average of 40yds up - you just have to love those days.:D

    One other thing about mixed spreads, often you'll bag all 3, and any 1 result would be mediocre, but the 3 combined = a VG hunt. For example by myself in the fall on a sunny low wind morning getting 4 Canada's, 3 Snows and 3 mallards in a morning hunt. Frankly the Canada's and duck see those white decoys from a long ways off and love to check out the spread.
    And I often use less than 150 decoys in the spring hunts too and have at times run through over 8 boxes of shells when everything comes together just right with consistent action for a few hrs.
    Another key on small spreads is to use high quality decoys and be hidden.

    On the myth that you must use large (600+) spreads are perpetuated by 2 camps. Decoys sellers. And those that have paid all that $ out for those 600+ decoy spreads, they have to justify their outlay of $ so they put everything out. Not a problem for 6 guys to put out 600+, and you can hide 6 blinds too. I get that. But for 1 or 2 guys, don't buy into that it's the only way to hunt Snows. :no
     
    Last edited: Aug 22, 2017
    CSUguy likes this.
  10. Zekeland

    Zekeland Senior Refuge Member

    Messages:
    452
    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2005
    Location:
    Brandon, Manitoba
    Very good read !!

    Im a mostly solo hunter, sometimes a couple guns out with me. But mostly solo and my 7 year old providing commentary on my shooting :scratch

    I do have the luxury to wait for windy days to set up on snows, usually. Im going to leave the sillosocks at home this fall and hunt over my small spread of 8 doz snows and 2 doz lessers. It will probably take me the same amount of time to put out 300 sillos as compared to 10 doz fb's. I just havn't had much experience setting up a smaller spread of fb's for snows. We will see how the lower # of decoys and more realism affect the hunt......

    Anybody care to post a pic or two of their small FB spreads ????
     
    snipe n likes this.

Share This Page