Which wooden duck call is best?
Duck hunting is a popular hobby among sportspeople. According to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, there are nearly a million active waterfowl hunters. And a duck call is one of the most important pieces of equipment for these hunters to use.
Duck calls are made of polycarbonate, acrylic or wood. Each has its own pros and cons, but wooden duck calls produce softer tones and are preferred by many duck hunters. For its overall vocal range and ease of use, the top wooden duck call is the tigerwood version of the Duck Commander Jake Robertson Pro Series.
What to know before you buy wooden duck calls
Caring for a wooden duck call
Wooden duck calls have many attractive features, but you should keep in mind that they also need regular maintenance to ensure they last a long time. The biggest threat to their longevity is moisture, as water absorption can cause wooden duck calls to swell and crack. You will need to follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for disassembling the call so it can be properly dried. You will also need to maintain the finish. However, none of this should dissuade you from purchasing a wooden duck call, but they are less durable than acrylic alternatives of duck calls.
In general, wooden duck calls are softer in their tone and create richer sound quality in attracting ducks. Different types of wood produce different sound qualities. Harder woods make sounds better for open-field hunting, while softer wood produces lower volume and tone that’s ideal for when you want to get up close.
Overall, wooden duck calls cost comparatively less than plastic and acrylic duck calls. The main advantage to lower cost is that hunters can likely buy multiple calls. It’s recommended to carry more than one duck call so that you are prepared for different situations that might require a different sound or technique. Depending on your budget, wooden duck calls may be your best bet for having multiple calls available.
What to look for in quality wooden duck calls
Type of wood
Wooden duck calls can be made from almost any type of wood. Some of the most popular woods are African blackwood, which is denser than many others. Hedge is also a popular choice, along with cocobolo and bocote. Maple, walnut, mahogany and persimmon are also used in some duck calls. The key is the overall hardness of the wood, as denser wood will produce a sharper tone than softer woods.
Number of reeds
Duck calls feature one or two reeds that vibrate to create a variety of sounds as air is blown over them. Duck calls with a single reed require less air but more from the hunter’s voice to produce the desired sounds. Double-reed duck calls make a raspier sound and need more air. In general, most hunters prefer double-reed calls because they are simpler to master.
There are some triple-reed duck calls on the market, but they are hard to find and challenging to use. Most duck hunters choose single- or double-reed calls.
Occasionally there may be a need to replace the call’s reed. Reeds come in different levels of thickness but should fit your call. That is why you should ensure the manufacturer has replacement reeds available if you ever need to order one or two. Be careful when trimming your own reeds if you want to make a unique sound, as this could damage them.
How much you can expect to spend on wooden duck calls
Most wooden duck calls cost $20-$50. Wooden duck calls with customized tuning can cost $50-$100.
Wooden duck calls FAQ
What are the basic calling techniques?
A. The three basic calls are a “quack,” which is a sharp note that mimics duck quacking. A “feed” call is a series of quick notes with different pitches that sound like ducks when they are eating. A “comeback” call is long and loud in order to attract ducks from a distance. There are many online videos available that demonstrate these techniques.
What else can I do to increase my chances of attracting ducks?
A. Along with your duck call, you can also add duck decoys. It’s also helpful to practice at home, so you can really master different techniques. Check out online videos of ducks to know what they actually sound like in the wild.
What are the best wooden duck calls to buy?
Top wooden duck call
Duck Commander Jake Robertson Pro Series Duck Call in Tigerwood
What you need to know: This well-researched design makes this duck call sound just like a mallard hen.
What you’ll love: This duck call was designed to require less air, making it easier to blow. The sounds are natural and mimic a mallard hen. It has a patented reed system and is manufactured in the U.S. by one of the best known brands in duck hunting.
What you should consider: Like most wooden duck calls, you will need to keep it protected from water and aired out when not in use.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Top wooden duck call for money
Perfect Woodie Duck Call
What you need to know: This accurately-toned duck call is designed for all skill levels, from beginner to veteran.
What you’ll love: Affordable and durable, this wooden duck call is only 2.75 inches long and is easy to blow.
What you should consider: Some complaints about it not working when condensation builds up or it gets wet.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Worth checking out
Primos Hunting Duck Call in Classic Wood
What you need to know: This classically designed duck call is made from hardwood and produces the low sounds needed to attract ducks to the blind.
What you’ll love: This versatile hardwood duck call can be used to call ducks overhead or sitting on the water. The sound travels far and consistently across wetlands and swamps. It is very easy to blow and comes from a quality brand.
What you should consider: Some cracking of the wood after minimal use has been reported.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
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Steve Ganger writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.