Animal decoys are replicas that enable a hunter to fool and eventually catch his target. The more real a decoy looks, the more effective it is in trapping the intended prey. While the use of decoys is quite common especially in waterfowl-hunting sports such as goose-hunting, commercially-produced plastic goose decoys have remained expensive.
Thus, making homemade goose decoys can help you save a lot. All you will need are some materials from the supply store, some time and a bit of creativity.
Before anything else, make sure you have the following items ready:
- Styrofoam block
- Canvas sheets
- Permanent or textile marker
- Glue gun
- Sandpaper (Fine Grit)
- Brown, black, and white paint
- Waterproofing spray
Now here is how to make your homemade goose decoy:
- To form the bodies of your decoys, first cut the Styrofoam into 12 inch by 12 inch blocks. Remember to always cut in the direction away from your body to avoid cutting yourself.
- Draw the outline or general shape of the goose on your Styrofoam block.
- Using your outline as a guide, trim the Styrofoam block with a sharp knife. Be careful not to cut yourself while doing this.
- Smooth the edges of your decoy with a fine-grit sandpaper, especially the areas too small for your knife to cut. Do this carefully as you might take too much off your block.
- Lay down your canvas and put the foam decoy on top of it. Using a pencil, trace the outline of the decoy onto the canvas. Then start trimming around the outline leaving an allowance of at least 4 inches all around. Remember that your decoy should be completely covered by canvas so make sure you do not overly trim.
- Spread, flatten and smooth your canvas with the back side up. Liberally apply glue to the back side of the canvas to ensure that the next step will be effective. Do this quickly to avoid cooling of the glue but take care not to burn yourself.
- With the top side down, place your decoy over glued surface of the canvas. Stretch the canvas to make sure that there are no lumps or air pockets and that the canvas is completely adhered to the foam.
- Fold over one corner of the canvas one at a time and with a small bead of hot glue, attach and hold it firmly against the foam for about 20 seconds. Do this repeatedly until all the remaining edges of the canvas have been firmly glued to the Styrofoam decoy.
- Now for the fun part, use water-proof paints to paint your canvas decoy with the appropriate color. The color depends on the species of goose that you will model your decoy after. Remember that you do not need to be very detailed, just as long as the color patterns are accurate.
- Finally and probably the most important step, waterproof your decoy with a coat of waterproofing spray Leave the decoy for about 2 minutes to dry thoroughly and then you are ready for your hunting adventure. Happy hunting!