9 expert tips to keep your waterfowl decoys looking ducky (and goose-ish)

Deke upkeep

Your decoys aren't duping ducks and geese? It’s probably time for some long overdue maintenance


If your decoys see a lot of action, they will show it, so thoroughly clean them at least once a year with good old soap and water. Use a soft scrub brush, and don’t get carried away—depending on the decoy, the paint can come off when you least expect it to. A light scrubbing is all you need, and definitely don’t use a pressure washer.


Alberta contributor Brad Fenson has more than 1,900 goose and duck decoys, and they’re all clean.


To help keep your decoys free from shiny frost, spray them with winter windshield washer fluid. Simply pour the alcohol-based liquid into a spray bottle and apply it to your dekes on mornings when frost is in the forecast, then towel it off. The fluid will prevent frost from forming as the sun comes up, maintaining the lifelike appearance of your decoys.

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