Targeting Redhead on the bay

Discussion in 'Diver Hunters Forum' started by FowlLanguage, Jul 27, 2017.

  1. FowlLanguage

    FowlLanguage New Member

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    Deal Island Md
    I am going to target redhead ducks this year on the Chesapeake bay. I am fairly new to diver duck hunting so I have some questions. I do have five dozen blue bill decoys and two dozen canvasbacks three dozen buff heads and a dozen goldeneyes my first question is how many redhead decoys do I need to have for redheads? Second question can I mix all these decoys together or should I keep them separate or can I mix some of them together but keep other ones separate. Thirdly what size decoy does everyone prefer life size or magnum size.

    Any information on this would greatly appreciated
     
  2. cholt

    cholt Senior Refuge Member

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    Oneonta al
    Here in north Al when glassing rafts of birds they are usually mixed in together in their own groups and some mixed up so we usually try to pair them up when setting up the cans usually decoy the best so we keep them towards the middle on either side of our main landing zone maybe this will help
     
  3. cholt

    cholt Senior Refuge Member

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    We usually hunt over 100 dekes
     
  4. FowlLanguage

    FowlLanguage New Member

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    So are you running long lines or setting all of the decoys one by one? And if your setting long line how close do you set the line together? Thanks for the the information
     
  5. markd

    markd Elite Refuge Member

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    Leesburg, Virginia
    You are in for a long season targeting redheads on the Bay. There just aren't that many.

    We usually put out around 100 decoys plus some geese off to the side.

    That said, you don't need all those buffie/goldeneye decoys, a half dozen of each set together on the edge of the rig will work fine, they tend to land with their own.

    Canvasbacks don't seem to like cutting the other decoys...but sometimes they do....we typically set them on the outside line(s) of the spread just in case.

    Redheads are a lot like blackheads in that they will land wherever in the decoys.

    Set the longlines so you can fit the boat between them and you will be fine. 18" droppers with the big 6" clips. The dogs won't get caught in them, they swim over the mainlines. The shorter droppers keep the dogs back legs from getting caught if they swim too close to the decoy(s). Heavy old window sash weights work well for the longlines if you can find them but you can make your own out of lead (round ones made out of soup can molds tend to roll on the bottom if the tide/current is stiff). Basically anything heavy will work (brake rotors, plate weights...) Foam decoys work best, especially when your buddies swat the birds in the decoys just before they put their feet down.

    If you are really on the Bay, be careful, don't be that guy (every year it happens) out in his 16' jonboat who gets killed when the weather turns.
     
  6. Dirtybird420

    Dirtybird420 Senior Refuge Member

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    So are u setting up for them like hunting seaducks in middle of bay or hunting along shoreline. You can kill redheads with the decoys you have I've killed em over puddle duck rigs without a issue. Biggest problem ur gonna have is finding huntsble numbers of them. 2 years ago we destroyed them in the salt marshes but this year they were stacked up in lower bay. In huge flocks. So ur gonna need to do a lot of scouting. But basically if your where they are ur cans n bluebills will work fine. They decoys like bb as said above where the cans always try n land towards head of spread. I've killed plenty of reds over puddle ducks u just gotta b where they are. Good luck. I've never killed many other ducks other than seaducks hunting in seaduck zone the divers seem to get hip to my work boat or even a grassed John boat. There not as dumb as scoters.
     
  7. FowlLanguage

    FowlLanguage New Member

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    Great information this is my second year hunt divers from a boat we hunted them from a shore blind for three years before the boat witch is a twenty five foot Duck Water. I try to set up wher I can use the shore line as a back drop to help hide the boat. Can get the buff heads to work the decoys but that seems to be the only thing. So I'm going to back off of the amount of buffheads we put out. Thanks again for the info.
     
  8. FowlLanguage

    FowlLanguage New Member

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    Haven't set up in the open water always us the shore line of a island as a back drop. Thanks for the information
     
  9. Rubberhead

    Rubberhead Elite Refuge Member

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    I have a small boat (1436) so I usually can't carry more than 30 decoys so I always try to "match the hatch" with the best quality decoys available. Some years we have redheads and some years we don't. If I were to purposefully target them, I would use your 2 dozen cans and set off a dozen redhead decoys. Put the cans downwind of the redheads and the redheads in the locations that'll offer the best shot.

    Bona fides...

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Somebody gave me a half dozen old Herter's 72 diver bodies. I burlapped them, used 304 stainless hardware and added Autumn Wings heads...
    [​IMG]
     
  10. FowlLanguage

    FowlLanguage New Member

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    Deal Island Md
    Beautiful redhead,thanks for the advice I will try that are you setting them on long lines or groups
    Thank
     

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