Goose getters

Deadly decoy strategies for gunning for Canadas, snows and specklebellies

After investing valuable time spotting geese, getting permission to set up on private land and organizing gear, it’s easy to overlook the final element to your goose hunt—the decoy set-up. Too many hunters go to great lengths to line up a shoot, but don’t put the same effort and detail into their spreads.

Basic spreads may work early in the season, but when the geese start flying in bigger flocks and have endured hunting pressure, the decoy set-up becomes critical. A well-designed spread works just as well on bluebird days as it does in miserable weather, but a bad spread will make incoming birds nervous, forcing them to look for other places to land.

If you live in a region where you can hunt multiple species of geese, you’ll have more shooting opportunities and more birds for the freezer if you learn their habits and are ready with a variety of set-ups. Whether you’re after Canadas, snows or a mix of goose species, the following spreads are proven producers.