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Banding Together for Waterfowl

gary koehler


Amazing Retriever Facts

Here's a look at several interesting facts that explain how dogs perceive the world and why they behave the way they do.

Mastering the Blind Retrieve

Retrievers are hard-wired to fetch fallen birds. When a retriever sees a bird fall, his natural instinct is to go out and get it. Honing that innate ability so the dog hunts for you and not for himself is the key to the training process. For this reason, the blind retrieve is perhaps the ultimate test of a finished duck dog.

Six Essential Commands for Retrievers

Here's a brief primer on 6 basic commands that will help set the stage for your retriever's future training and hunting success:

Cold-Weather Retriever Care

Most retrievers aren't afraid of cold weather and will throw caution to the brisk wind when hunting waterfowl, fetching birds in icy water and braving even the harshest elements. Properly conditioned duck dogs are built for the cold.

Top Ten Retrievers

Of all the unanswered questions about the history of waterfowl hunting, the most intriguing mystery involves retrievers. When, how, and where, exactly, did today's duck dogs first arrive on the waterfowling scene? Scholars have spent years researching the origins of just about every sporting breed in existence. Here's an exploration of 10 of the most popular retriever breeds, their histories, and the respective attributes that make them valued hunting partners and family pets. (By Gary Koehler)

Upper Mississippi River Revisited

The author returns to the big river to hunt ducks on the anniversary of the Armistice Day Storm.

Waterfowling Collectibles

Waterfowling history can be traced through decoys, guns, boats, or any historical gear used by our forefathers. This page provides information on decoy and other waterfowling collectible shows and events.

Close-Range Canadas

Over time, a goose hunter learns to take care of the little things. So we contacted four pros, all well schooled in the ways of the Canada goose, and asked them to share their expertise.

South Dakota Spectacular

Gary Koehler, DU Magazine senior editor, joined Avery Outdoors Pro-Staff members, Martin Hesby and Tyson Keller on an amazing South Dakot mallard hunt. This video captures a few moments of the "South Dakota Spectacular." For more on this hunt, read the July/Aug 2011 issue of Ducks Unlimited Magazine. (Video by David Sams)

South Dakota Spectacular

The hunt of a lifetime is the reward for days of hard scouting in this state's prairie pothole country

Retrievers: Healthy Choices

Developing a sensible routine will help keep your retriever in top condition

Saving America's Marsh

Coastal wetland loss and degradation are threatening Louisiana's rich hunting and fishing heritage

Retrievers: All in Good Time

Chris Akin of Webb Footed Kennels explains that patience is key a virtue when training a young dog.

Picking the Right Retriever

Retrievers come in all shapes and sizes. Temperament and trainability also vary from breed to breed. Think about your lifestyle, and exactly what you are looking for in a retriever, before taking the plunge and purchasing a waterfowl-hunting dog. This simple exercise could save you considerable anxiety later on.

Building a Dog Kennel

The devil is in the details when planning this canine construction project.

Decoying Ducks in Arkansas Timber

Decoying ducks in the Arkansas timber sometimes requires a soft touch.

Great Rivers for Waterfowling

America's rivers are rich with waterfowling opportunities and traditions.

Clean Up Your Call

From cleaning your call to practicing in the field and at home, you can improve your duck calling technique all year long.

Summer Drills for Retrievers

The months leading up to opening day provide time to hone your retriever's skills. Gary Koehler provides diagrams and tips for summertime training drills for your retriever.

Duck Diners

Throughout America’s duck country, local diners are part of the social fabric of waterfowling.

High Desert Waterfowling

A Nevada duck and goose hunt opens a door to waterfowling’s distant past

Breaking Bad Behavior

Here’s what to do if your retriever won’t stop whining or can’t sit still in the duck blind.

Not Your Grandpa's Gear

A collection of blind-bag accessories for waterfowlers who thought they had everything.

Americas Top Goose Destinations

Harvest statistics and expert advice reveal the best spots in the country for Canadas, light geese, whitefronts and brant.

Blind Faith

With today's array of portable blinds, waterfowlers can be more mobile than ever.

Biggest Mistakes in Duck Hunting

Here’s how to avoid the most common errors committed by waterfowl hunters.

Talking Goose Talk

Learn the basic calls before trying to master the entire language

Ultimate Duck Calling Challenge

What's the secret to world-class duck callers' success? Gary Koehler sheds some light on these championship techniques.

Legends of the Call

Gary Koehler profiles some of history's most notable duck and goose call makers.

The Sooner the Better

When the weather turns cold, thousands of waterfowl pour into Oklahoma’s northern tier.

The Really Great Salt Lake

Situated in the shadow of the Wasatch Mountains, this waterfowling venue may be second to none.

Get Moving for Geese

Many hunters have learned that adding movement to their decoy spread provides a competitive edge.

All in a Day's Work

Dogs that hunt for professional guides may retrieve more birds in a single season than most dogs do in a lifetime.

Atlantic Odyssey

A season-long waterfowling adventure down America’s most historic flyway.

The Men Behind the Legends

Their handiwork has dazzled us for decades, but we should remember that many heralded decoy carvers were just everyday folks.

Greenheads - How To Hunt Mallard Country

View from the Gulf

Gary Koehler shares the story of Louisiana waterfowl hunters and the unseasonable weather that impacts their hunting success.

Northwest Passage

While surrounded by black Labs, tall trees, taller bluffs and a healthy mix of dabblers and divers, it does not take a duck hunter long to recognize that the lower Columbia River endures nature's complete weather package nearly every day.

Providing Opportunities for Outdoorsmen with Special Needs

Hunting facilities and target-shooting events are becoming more user-friendly for outdoorsmen with special needs.

Wild Rice & Mallards On the Kapuskasing

The James Bay frontier offers solitude and off-the-beaten-path waterfowling opportunities.

Maintain and Modify Your Duck Calls

Gary Koehler advises on the best ways to maintain the quality of your call and make slight tweaks to improve its performance.

Duck Calling Teamwork

A team calling effort may get you more birds in your bag this season. Gary Koehler shares some teamwork tips from calling pros.

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