There Is Money To Be Had In Those Old Duck Decoys
Using a decoy while hunting is a idea that has been around for an extremely long time. But in the 1800s what we know think of as being a decoy began to become more popular as the need to earn a living became a driving factor for a huge number of people and many of them turned to hunting to provide that income. For their hunting to be successful the hunters needed every advantage they could have and so was born what we know think of as Old duck decoys.
Many of the first decoys made were very simple in their construction. Many were nothing more than crudely carved hunks of wood with a head like attachment that had been painted in dull colors. The wood needed to be dull because ducks were found to be almost suspicious of anything too brightly colored in the water when they flew over or came into land.
Although decoys were produced in large numbers in the 1800s and posted out across the country, a just as large quantity of decoys were hand produced by the hunters that used them themselves. Decoys are used to bring the ducks into land near the edges of bodies of water, making them easier to aim at. Although shooting was the most effective method, the use of bows and arrows was also an efficient method of shooting. However using a bow needed the ducks to be nearer to the hunter.
Many of the old decoys made from the traditional wood were broken or sold for horribly small sums of wood when decoys produced from plastic started to become more popular. Because they were made from wood, the old fashioned decoys were a lot heavier and were hard to carry around in the bigger numbers that were often required.
Decoys can be linked to geographical area by the manner in which they have been carved and with the species of ducks they have been produced to represent. In harder times when hunters were forced through lack of funds to carve their own, they often copied the decoys that were already in use in their area or tried to mimic the birds they had first hand knowledge of from their own hunting experiences.
As old duck decoys become harder to find, especially those made from traditional wood, they have started to become more valuable. Those that exhibit quality craftsmanship only add to their potential value. A decoy that has been made to have a hollow body is also quite valuable as these were considered to be a challenge to make although they were very popular with hunters. A decoy in reasonable condition with a good amount of age to it is becoming harder to come across and this only adds to the value even more. Because decoys have become collectible many decoys are being kept in families and handed down from one generation to the next.
For some, decoys that have been constructed from white cedar are thought to be some of the better decoys to have. White cedar is a wood that has been found to last a good length of time and floats better in the water. The wood does not deteriorate as quickly as some other woods and when painted, it keeps its paint extremely well.
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