Duck hunting, like most hobbies, requires a lot of equipment. My goal with this set of instructions is to point you in the right direction for purchasing these items, as well as what to look for with each item and what will work best for you. It is possible to spend a very large amount of money equipping yourself with the latest and greatest, so I have made sure to include the essentials while also giving options for later purchases.
Step 1: Shotgun
*Caution* -Always treat firearms as if they are loaded and never point them at anything you do not wish to destroy. I advise taking a hunter's safety course offered in your area to learn how to handle firearms safely.
The first, and probably most expensive, purchase needed to hunt almost any animal is a gun. A shotgun is the only gun that is legal to shoot waterfowl with. The most popular size is a 12 gauge which shoots 3 inch shotgun shells (I will talk more about shells in a little bit). Prices for shotguns can range from a few hundred dollars to over $1500. It is up to you how much you want to spend, so I will give my recommendations on an entry-level shotgun and a more expensive model.
• Remington 870 Express Pump-Action (Entry-level)
o The most popular shotgun of all-time
o Very rugged and dependable
o Shoots 2 ¾” and 3” shells
o Can be found used or new all over the country for less than $400
• Beretta A391 Xtrema 2 Semi-Auto (For enthusiasts, pictured above)
o Shoots 2 ¾”, 3”, or 3 ½” shells
o More recoil reduction
o Also very reliable
o Priced around $1400