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Why Late Winter is the Best Time to Buy a Set of Duck Decoys

Photo by Joe Riekers

“Timing is everything,” including when you should buy your decoys.

Last winter is just the right time to buy a set of decoys. The timing is right – it is the perfect storm of favorable factors for the hunters seeking a new set of decoys.

Used Gear

Late winter is the best time to check sale sites like E-bay and Craigslist for decoys. Some hunters have come to the realization that they are no longer going to hunt ducks and are willing to part with their decoys as another season comes to an end without them hitting the water. Other hunters have lost their duck hunting property and are not likely to find another for next year. Then there are those hunters that are disappointed with their duck hunting results from this year, so they are either moving to other interests or getting a completely new setup in hope that it will change their luck.

Similar to the movement of other markets, there are those people that over-spent during the holidays and need to recover some cash, as well as those that anticipate owing Uncle Sam some tax revenue, so they have to liquidate some assets to cover the bill. Sometimes those assets happen to be outdoor gear.

If you can discover the motivation of the seller and have cash to offer you are very likely to be able to negotiate a bargain. One trick is to see the decoys in person with cash in hand. It is easier for a seller to drop their price with you in front of them holding a fistful of cash than to negotiate the price over the phone or through email.

Don’t shy away from incomplete sets of decoys. You may use the incompleteness as a bargaining point for a lower price. You can always look for more than one sale and assemble what you need by buying several smaller quantities.
Sportsman’s Guide


New Gear

There is a lot going on at the retail level during late winter that makes it a great time to buy a set of decoys. Decoys take up a lot of real estate on store shelves. The demand for decoys is down considerably since the season is now a year away. Retailers are willing to lower prices to move these decoys out of the store to make room for the current seasonally -elated merchandise.

This is a good time to look for anything that is slightly damaged, display models and imperfections. The store manager may be willing to discount these items if you point out these flaws.

The SHOT Show and other sporting venues have manufacturers releasing new products, items and additions and that includes decoy makers. Last years models that are discontinued and replaced with something new are often available at big discounts. The deepest discounts for “last years” models usually comes from catalog sales merchandisers but brick and mortar stores have similar dilemmas making room for new products.

Don’t wait until the last minute to pick up some new decoys. Late winter is the perfect time to buy a set, and get yourself geared up for more successful duck hunting.

Whether it is to start gathering decoys or to supplement what you already have, late winter is the perfect time to buy a set of decoys.

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Why Late Winter is the Best Time to Buy a Set of Duck Decoys