Decoys

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On a single stand, we called in 5 and bagged 4.  All the coyotes were shot standing less than 100 yards away.

This is what a Silver Dog Howler and a coyote decoy can do for you!

Coyote Decoy

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John Cartwright of Parker, Colorado with a fine mountain coyote.   John bought the combo pack (Silver Dog Howler and a coyote decoy).

Why?

Do you ever get those coyotes that just won't come all the way in?  Sitting out there at 400 yards.  Do they circle down wind trying to catch your scent?  Do they come in too fast and leave even faster?  You didn't fire a shot.  Try a coyote decoy! 

Let me explain what is happening in the situations described above and how a decoy helps.  When a predator comes to the call, he's looking for something.   They expect to see birds, rabbits, fox, or other coyotes moving around and making noise.  Most hunters stop calling or limit their calling when they see an animal coming in.  If the coyote can't see you and doesn't hear anything, how does he know where to go?  That may be a bit of an exaggeration, as he probably has a pretty good idea where you're at.  When they spot a decoy, that's exactly what they were expecting and in they come. 

I believe most coyotes circle down wind because they are unsure of what is making the noise.  Show them what's making the noise and there isn't any reason to circle.

How?

When hunting the wide open spaces of the Midwest, a coyote decoy is visible for a long ways.  Just position it toward the top of a hill and you're in business.  We get strong winds in South Dakota and Colorado.  How does the decoy hold up?  If you place the tail end of the decoy into the wind and the front legs wide apart, this decoy will handle the wind without any problems.  If you're in a wind that can blow this decoy down, you should be home watching football.

If you're hunting in close quarters with dense brush, the decoy will work differently.  When hunting in thick sage brush, I place the decoy in the middle of an opening.  The opening may be 20 - 50 yards wide.  When the coyote hits the edge of the opening and sees the decoy, most times he'll stop for a quick look.  What he's doing is deciding if he's bigger than the competition.  While he's trying to decide, you take a standing shot.

Who?

ADC agents have been using howlers and decoys for years.   They've kept it a secret, because it works.  If they're called in to handle the problem predators,  chances are they have already seen and heard just about everything.  A decoy in plain sight is just enough to fool the animal into coming in.

Ever hunted in a coyote calling contest?  Take a peak in some of the trucks parked outside the hotel.  You'll find a good many of them have some sort of decoy.  Decoy dogs aren't allowed in most contests, so a decoy of some other kind is the next best thing.  If anyone takes coyote hunting seriously, it's the hunters at a contest.

Movement Because the decoy is made of soft tanned coyote fur, it moves when the wind blows.  The fur itself has a life like movement and the extra fur hanging from the aluminum frame moves back and forth in the wind.  You can hang  a small piece of fur or a couple feathers from the mouth for more motion.  It looks like the coyote caught something.  The only thing better than this decoy is a dog.
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Rabbit Decoy

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Most of the "Why?, How?, Who? and Movement" sections above apply to the rabbit decoy as well as the coyote decoy.  I'll note a few of the differences.  

The rabbit decoy is not as big and tall, therefore, it isn't as visible.   In semi-tall cover, the rabbit decoy doesn't work.  If you're hunting in an opening in dense cover or wide open areas, it's  very effective.

The body of the decoy is made of PVC pipe.  Where the head meets the shoulder, the PVC pipe is on the edge with a spring for tension.  The extra large ears are designed to catch the wind and the head bobs back and forth.  A piece of white fur for the tail is suspended in the air with a piece of wire.  With ever so slight a breeze, this fur will move.  Once a coyote spots this movement, he will lock in, allowing you to move with out being noticed.

You could modify this design by adding a tripod or pole to raise the decoy up in the air.  This would improve the visibility and possibly make it useable in semi-tall cover.  Maybe just mounting the spring loaded head to a pole would work too.



Parker, Colorado
Phone: 720-851-8186
E-mail:info@varmintcaller.com

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