If you are tired of hauling bags of full body waterfowl decoys to your favorite site every time you are able to spend the day in the field, maybe it is time to consider using 2-D or silhouette decoys. These decoys are flat, and are reproduced as very realistic life size birds.
Staff at Minturn Anglers in Denver tell me that these 2-D or silo decoys are becoming more and more popular, for a number of reasons:
- Decoys look very much like real ducks or geese
- They are water resistant, made of long-lasting plastic
- The design is extremely compact and flat, usually only a fraction of an inch thick, making them easy to transport and carry
- They can mimic different positions as the head is usually mounted on an axis
- Manufacturers offer a wide variety of different decoy poses
- These decoys look like they are moving even if there is no wind
- Each decoy comes with a rod for easy anchoring to the ground
- Each decoy is completely assembled, ready to be placed into the ground
- Decoys are easy to clean, usually with a hose and water
Critics of 2-D decoys believe the reflection from a flat surface can warn ducks and geese off the display, and that the entire decoy display will disappear when the birds are directly overhead. Minturn Anglers staff advise me that such problems can be easily overcome. For example, some 2-D decoy manufacturers are using non-reflective materials in at least one side of the decoy. When decoys are spread out enough, there will always be some visible from the air so being directly over a silhouette ceases to be a problem.
Most bird hunters consider that having too many decoys in the field is much better than too few. Certainly the 2-Ds make this easier to accomplish. Placing decoys far apart in an X pattern helps to land birds in the spaces created by the X shape. Minturn Anglers staff remind me that decoy strategy is not static. If one approach is not working, scout the area and the bird traffic action and adjust decoys until the spread pays off.
Silhouette decoys are easy to work with, very easy to carry, and most importantly, are effective. What more could you ask for?