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Reviews of the Best Duck Calls You Can Buy

  • June 29, 2016 /

Duck

Water fowl hunting enthusiasts want a duck call that will deliver the results they need to “bring home the duck” as well as have repeated success during duck hunting seasons, and further luck in the locales where their feathered friends make their homes. The right duck call can make all the difference in snagging your bird and having a successful season at the same time. Any buying guide for a duck hunting enthusiast should include recommendations and tips on how to select the best duck calls for the money.

Hunter Duck Call Preference

All duck calls are not alike and every hunter has a preference for what he or she thinks will be the answer to their specific needs. The decision usually comes down to a number of factors that include basic and pinpointed features and attributes that comprise most duck call brands that are manufactured today.

Some of the preliminary details to take into consideration when looking for a duck call include:

  • The duck call’s durability
  • The duck call’s reliability
  • The cost of the duck call
  • The brand of the duck call
  • The duck call available physical style or look
  • The duck call’s learning curve
  • The actual sound of the duck call (Those hunters utilizing duck usually sample a duck call and they choose one by simple trial and error. If it meets their needs, sounds good to them and is within their range of calling ability, a purchase is usually made)

Two Mallards SwimmingWater fowl hunters need to think about their individual duck hunting situations and what duck call traits they would require to accomplish their duck hunting endgame. They should think about the following concepts:

  • What they really need
  • What appeals to them personally
  • Where (environment) and how they intend to use it (timber and flooded areas, potholes, beaver ponds, open-water, etc.)
  • The tone of call
  • The variety of reed
  • The type of barrel
  • The end piece design
  • The range/reach of the call
  • The sharpness of the call
  • The high or low volume of the call
  • The ringing (tone) of the call
  • The mellow (tone) of the call
  • Whether the call is a single or double-reed device
  • Whether the call is geared towards mimicking particular ducks, such as:
    • Pintails – long slender ducks
    • Wigeons – common freshwater duck
    • Drake Mallard – male duck – wild, colorful dabbling duck (female = hen)
    • Gadwall – most common dabbling duck with gray, brown, and black traits
    • Teal – small North American duck with short neck and bill

Duck Call Materials:

A more pinpointed aspect of a duck call is its construction. The materials utilized can make a significant difference with duck calls. Whether wood, polycarbonate or acrylic, the material selected has a lot to do with how the call functions.

Wood

Wood is the traditional material that makes up a duck call. It has a rich, gravelly sound and is a better choice in situations where close calling is necessary. Wood has its drawbacks at the same time. Though wood does provide a softer more accurate sound, which makes them good for hunting in blind areas or when utilizing decoys; however, wood is not as strong and durable as polycarbonate or acrylics. It does wear and requires attention and maintenance to keep it in top condition. It is susceptible to changes in the weather, and moisture can play havoc on its upkeep. Wood calls are less expensive than more modern calls that utilize man-made materials, yet significant craftsmanship goes into the making of wood calls for a more individualized and personal touch.

Polycarbonate

Polycarbonate (molded plastic) materials are solid to begin with and are melted down into a liquid that is immediately poured into a special mold for a call. The method of production is inexpensive and the resulting call is durable, long lasting and budget friendly. Poly-carb duck calls are great for novice duck hunters and many duck callers use them on a regular basis. The call capability with polycarbonate falls between acrylic and wood for clearness, sharpness and loudness.

Acrylic

Acrylic is a clear plastic that is glass-like, and it is an extremely durable, appealing and versatile product. The call sounds created through acrylic fashioning are many, but it is expensive to manufacture and sell. Most custom duck calls are acrylic and are made for open-water use. They come in both soft and dark colors, and those varying colors associated with acrylics can create tonal differences. Colors that are more transparent create denser, harder, sharper, and louder sounds as opposed to more solid colors that generate less clear and more distinct sounds. So choosing a duck call because of color should be a consideration in seeking the right tone.

Another pinpointed aspect of a duck call is whether it is single or double-reed device, which simply means that a duck call is an instrument, a woodwind, where sound is made by air passing over a vibrating reed. With a duck call, different sounds of a certain volume, pitch and length are made with either a single or double-reed call.

Whether to Single or Double-Reed

Single-reed calls allow for more range and are more functional that double-reed calls, but single-reed calls can be harder to learn and master. Single-reed calls produce clean, crisp and challenging sounds. The difficulty of mastery or the mechanical grasp of a single-reed call requires air and tongue control as well as proper positioning to achieve expertise.

Double-reed calls require more air input to blow and their range is limited in comparison to single-reed calls, but double-reed calls do have spots in their tonal range that can be very convincing to ducks, plus they are easier to use and learn, so they can bring considerable confidence to any new duck caller in the ranks. Double-reed calls are more complete and fuller in that they have more built-in duck sounds. Though they may not have the range of a single-reed call and probably won’t win contests or trophies, they do produce the right sounds and offer versatility.

Categories

In considering what goes into a guide for purchasing the right duck call along with the use it is going to entail, the following categories include reviews for best duck calls. They give the duck hunter an idea of what he or she should use in order to gain success in duck hunting ventures in their region of the country, or on special hunts outside of their home territory.

The following categories for Best Duck Calls include:

The Best Duck Call for the Money:

For those on a budget as well as those just beginning with duck calls, the Primos High Roller Call is a trusted brand and has been used by duck hunters for a number of years. Primos products are made of the highest quality materials and they are specifically styled to endure the harshest of environments. Primos tests their products under the most extreme settings and conditions and their designs are fashioned to stand the test of time. There is a built in roller bar that spontaneously produces a fluttering whistle, and it can produce the fluttering and rolling whistle of pintail ducks. It can also accommodate the grunt of mallard drakes, and the whistle of wigeons and teals. Many other bird sounds can be made with this duck call and it replicates similar sounds to ducks while they are in flight. The only complaints appear to be roller sticking that occurs from moisture (breath) as well as difficulty with calling loudly.

Its dimensions are 4 x 1.5 x 8 inches. It is sturdy yet lightweight polycarbonate and weighs just 1.1 ounces and comes in a bright green with a black mouthpiece. There are also instructions included for different calls.

Best Duck Call for Beginners:

This duck call that has become associated with the Robertson brothers of Louisiana has been 30 thirty years in the making and duplicates an on target duck sound in any place at any time. Ducks are immediately attracted to the call. This easy to blow and expertly designed double-reed is perfect for novices and requires a short learning curve. It is ideal for all terrain, seasons and conditions whether wet, dry or normal, and it works well with all ranges of call, whether long, medium or short The Duck Picker has a tried and true duck sound and is a multi-purpose device. The sound is loud yet warm, easy to control, and no adjustments are needed.

Its dimensions are 5.5 x 1 x 1 inches. It is sturdy yet thin and weighs just 11.2 ounces and comes in a bright orange color.

Best Double Reed Duck Call

Echo Calls duck calls were originally developed by world champion duck caller, Rick Dunn, and this model has all the earmarks of an excellent double-reed call as it has volume, great control, and a raspy nature that is comparable to single reed calls. Echo Calls are specifically positioned for lower volume close calling activity and are literally irresistible to ducks. Focused duck hunters and those that guide other hunters appreciate the calls this doubled reed call produces. They are designed for the open water, field and the green timber hunting of Arkansas, which is some of the hardest and most wholesome of duck hunting states. The double reed model is richly fashioned with a polished band of brass that provides both beauty and durability. It produces calls with a varying range of tones from hail calls (those calls first used when attempting to arouse ducks when approaching a group) to softer, raspy type quacks. Echo Calls are usually available in different wood types

Its dimensions are 6.00 x 3.00 x 2.00 inches and it weighs 2.4 ounces. It does come with a warranty.

MallardBest Overall Duck Call

The Cass Creek Ergo Call ergonomically designed game call is small, portable and convenient. It has belt clip capability and has an external speaker and input jack. It can be operated with one hand and has five (5) calls in one. It utilizes only authentic recordings, (pre-programmed calls), which make this device an almost fail-safe caller. The standard plugin has a 3.5 mm headphone jack so an additional speaker could be included to make it louder, but a set of ear buds should be added to hear more clearly and adequately. The device is perfect for learning, imitating and parroting back duck calls. Its mid range price, convenience, accessibility and call ability make this a candidate for the best overall duck call available in the market today. All users whether initiating their first calls or getting into the field for quick results without a lot of wait time and effort appreciate this hand held call device. It has input devices on the front of the camouflaged unit that include highball greeting, lonesome hen, laydown call, feeding call, and comeback call. The word DUCK appears at the bottom of the unit.

Its dimensions are 8.5 x 6.8 x 2 inches and it weighs 4.8 ounces. The device operates on 3 AAA batteries that are included.

Conclusion

Though trying to choose a duck call can be both exasperating and fun at the same time, the endless selections available through sporting goods outlets, with the added repetitive preponderance of reviews out there of duck call brands and models, can become confusing, but the various duck calls on the market can eventually be riddled down to a short list of the best duck calls available.

The categories that have been examined here are a brief buying guide that helps to eliminate the stress involved with narrowing down the choice to either one or several duck calls that meet the quintessential needs of almost any duck hunter today. The search has been simplified through the information and reviews provided, so final decisions should not be mind boggling. Those calls reviewed have something to offer any waterfowl enthusiast, which can end the tiring search for the perfect duck call. Each call has something different to offer and can be easily further researched.