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Do Silhouette Goose Decoys Really Work?

We're in the midst of a modern revolution of old school hunting tactics, and skinny 2-dimensional goose silhouette decoys are the latest craze.

Do Silhouette Goose Decoys Really Work?

Silhouette decoys are making a comeback, and if you're looking to add realism to your spread without having to dip too far into the savings account, these decoys are just what the goose doctor ordered. (Video by Jace Bauserman)

I got chastised when I pulled the dozen silhouette fakes from the field bag. One of the goose veterans in the group came walking toward me, shaking his finger. He looked at me, chuckled, and said, "Nope. No silly decoys in this spread." He didn't mean any harm. The two of us often hunt together, and though his tone was rich with sarcasm, he was making a point. He didn't want a single silhouette goose decoy in the full body spread that day.

Watch Silhouette Goose Decoys In Action Below!

Why Silhouettes?

As I noted, my buddy is an old-school waterfowler. He remembers the days when silhouettes came with wooden stakes — stakes that would fracture when pushed into the frozen ground. In addition to durability issues, past profiles sported poor paint jobs and would shine like crazy. The decoys weren't durable — plastic was brittle — and they would crack and chip in extreme cold.


I brushed him off. I'd done my homework, and the two-dozen Dive Bomb Canada V2 Silhouettes I'd purchased were going in the ground come hell or high water. My buddy wasn't happy about it, but when the first two groups of lessers and cacklers dropped their black feet over the fakes, he changed his tune.


Say Yes to Silhouettes

If you're a serious goose gunner, you need to add some silhouettes to your goose decoy arsenal, and Dive Bomb's V2s are the best I've found. At $70 per dozen, the decoys are economical, and the deep, dark-colored paint job is realistic and isn't prone to shining like the lights on the Vegas Strip. Each 12-pack contains six feeders, two resters, two quartering away, and two lookers. The poses are natural, and you'll appreciate the one-piece powder-coated spring steel stake. Skinny but durably, stakes pierce the ground, and because the stakes run through the decoys from top to bottom, each silhouette is driven into the ground and held in place. These decoys, made of rugged plastic material, are a great addition to any spread.

silhouette goose decoys dive bomb industries v2 canada geese
There are a multitude of benefits to running silhouette goose decoys, from being lightweight and quicker to setup and take down, to being less expensive and taking up less storage space, just to name a few. (Photo courtesy of Jace Bauserman)

Lightweight for Walk-In Access

State game and fish agencies are doing a remarkable job of partnering with private-land owners to open more dirt to public access. These areas can offer some fantastic waterfowl hunting, but driving a goose trailer into a Walk-In field is taboo. When hunting public-land grain fields and river systems, weight becomes a critical consideration. Hauling dozens of full body and shell decoys into a field can be exhausting work. Silhouette decoys are easy to transport, and at just six pounds per dozen, you can haul piles of fakes into a field with nothing more than a bit of leg power. Most silhouette field bags will carry between five- and six-dozen decoys. Another benefit is how quickly you can deploy a decoy spread. Get three or four hunters walking around doing nothing more than shoving a stake in the ground with a decoy attached to it, and it doesn't take long to create a big spread of decoys.

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Help with a Hide

I love to put several silhouette decoys around my layout blind. When you combine a few of these decoys with a well-blended-in layout, you increase your odds of beady black eyes not seeing something that will cause them to flare.

Mix Them In

While silhouette decoys work great as stand-alone decoys, I feel they enhance a spread of shell and full-body decoys. With three- or four-dozen silhouettes, you can quickly change the size of your spread without breaking the bank. Hunters have been using silhouette decoys successfully for decades. While the trend went away from this decoy style for a length of time, improved craftsmanship has made these decoys popular once again, and they are a killer addition to any spread. Dive Bomb’s V2 decoys sport a high-profile design, making them extremely visible to live geese. Silhouettes stand up nice and tall and don't shrink into the backdrop.

silhouette goose decoys dive bomb industries v2 canada geese
YES! Silhouette goose decoys do work, and they work very well. And while they are not new for waterfowlers, there has been a big resurgence in their use in recent years. (Photo courtesy of Jace Bauserman)

Look From Above

Silhouette decoys are two-dimensional, which is a win. This style of decoy casts a great shadow, which means when live geese fly over them, those geese see the decoy and a dark shadow. Lots of contrast is a good thing. Regardless of wind direction, I recommend you position your silhouette decoys differently and not face them all in one direction. This way, when geese are circling your spread from above, their view of the spread is constantly changing.

Movement

Decoys create the illusion of movement when geese circle as they change size and shape. They also waggle in the wind. I'm a big believer in movement, and because silhouette decoys boast a thin, light profile, the wind will cause them to shake. I love the shake. Unless temps are freezing and food is covered in a layer of snow, geese start moving a lot the second their feet hit the field. Movement boosts the realistic nature of the spread, and even if the wind isn't blowing, silhouette decoys can create the illusion of movement.  How? Think about it. If you position the silhouettes in various directions, the view live geese have of the decoys, as mentioned previously, will constantly be changing. As they move through the air, their view of a broadside decoy will change to a thin edge and then back again.

Spread 'Em Out

While I like to use silhouette decoys around layouts, I prefer to spread the remaining decoys out. When the decoys are properly spread (three to five feet apart), geese can see the full effect of each decoy. Try not to cover up parts of the silhouettes by putting them too close together.

If you're looking to take your goose game to the next level, silhouette decoys will help you get there. Make a quick credit card swipe and get some two-dimensional fakes headed your way.


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