The first hunt was an afternoon hunt and the weather was warm and sunny with no wind. We got set up late in the day and were not hunting on the “X”. We did not have any flocks of snow geese seriously look at the spread, however we also were competing with two huge flocks a mile south of us and were not in the flight path from the roost. During the second and third morning hunts we experienced much better success. We consistently had smaller flocks of ALL ADULT snow geese working the spread. We noted that although the geese were not willing to fully commit to landing in the spread, but over and over they would work the spread down to between 35 – 45 yards high and hover directly over the Flyright Decoy Machines for a clean shot. Two hunters harvested 30 adult snow geese in a 3 hour hunt, which in my opinion, with the circumstances described, is exceptional!
We also concluded that we were able to draw the larger flocks over to our general direction which also added to the overall productiveness of the hunt, as more geese in smaller flocks would then break off and head into our direction and come into gunning rage as well.
We also felt that it was much easier to hide our blinds from the incoming birds as we set the blinds up about 25 yards directly behind the machines to make sure we were out of the sight plane. One thing we did play with was the width of the spread. The first day we had the two machines about 10 feet apart. By the third day we spread the 2 machines out about 20 yards apart and placed several single Feather Flyer Decoys in between the machines so the flyers were not so congested and the birds seemed to respond better with the more overall space we took up with the machines.
In speaking in length with the inventor of the Flyright Decoy Machine Mike Franklin of Pacific Wings Prairie Adventures, who also guides snow goose hunters in Saskatchewan every fall. Mike explained to us that after field testing the machines over 3 seasons now, he has found that it is most effective on no wind days when the snow geese are very hard to decoy. He also noted that the juvenile geese, in the fall absolutely love the machines and dive bomb the spread over and over! Mike also noted that when hunting in tough spring conditions he recommends using 2 – 3 machines for maximum potential. That was before the 12 bird and 24 bird machines were available though. In our opinion the ideal set up for an actual outfitter would be to use 3 machines ranging from two 9 bird machines set up on either side of the 24 bird machine in the middle. Then adding a half dozen single Feather Flyer Decoys around the edges of the machines for added irratic movement. For the avid snow goose hunter who will only be using the machines once or twice a year, we recommend either going all in for the 24 bird machine or purchasing two of the 6 bird machines and a couple single Feather Flyer Decoys to set up around the machines. This will allow the hunter to drop down the overall size of his spread, possible using 10 – 15 dozen Sillosock Decoys and thus the entire spread will fit in the back of a pick-up bed. A single machine could also be used effectively on its own, on those hard no wind days, as needed. No matter what situation, we feel the New Feather Flyer Decoy Machine will be a great enhancement and addition to any snow goose spread.
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