5 Best Duck Calls For Beginners (2018 Update)

If you are new to duck hunting, a duck call is one of the first things which you should be looking to buy and learn. In this article, we will review some of the best duck calls for beginners to make the learning process easier and faster for you.

If you are in a hurry:

Buck Gardner Double Nasty is the Best Duck Call for Beginners.

Best Duck Call For Beginners
  • Effectiveness
  • Loudness and Authenticity
  • Material and Craftsmanship
  • User Rating


Buck Gardner Double Nasty is an excellent duck call for beginners; yet you will find it offers the best value for money. It is easy to blow, easy to clean and easy on the wallet. The reeds are fitted, the tone board is hand sanded and it looks great with its high-gloss finish.

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Now, let’s move on to our detailed reviews. Here is the list of best duck calls that we shortlisted:

  1. Best Duck Call For Beginners — Buck Gardner Double Nasty
  2. Best Single Reed Duck Call — Duck Commander Uncle Si
  3. Best Double Reed Duck Call — Duck Commander Camo Max
  4. Best Duck Call For The Money — Haydels DR-85
  5. Best Mallard Duck Call — Duck Commander Triple Threat

As you can see, duck hunters have a myriad of choices when looking for a suitable duck call. In order to select one of the best duck calls, you need to understand what differentiates one from another.

How to Pick a Duck Call

Duck calls vary significantly as per materials used, craftsmanship, suitability, and effectiveness. We shortlisted the best duck calls for beginners on the basis of:

  • Material and Craftsmanship
  • Loudness and Authenticity
  • Effectiveness

Material and Craftsmanship

Most duck calls are constructed from, plastic (polycarbonate), wood or acrylic. Duck calls made from plastic are the cheapest while the ones made from acrylic tend to be expensive. For beginners, it’s important that the call is durable enough to last practice as well as season and hence we have ruled out the cheap plastic ones.

When it comes to duck calls, craftsmanship is very important as a poorly crafted duck call would make learning extremely hard. All beginners should look for a duck call from a reputable company known for its craftsmanship.

Loudness and Authenticity

Hunting on lakes and rivers requires a call that is louder and high pitched so that the notes can travel further. Whereas, if you are hunting in places like flooded timber, potholes, and beaver ponds then a softer call with authentic sound is more important than the reach.

If you are hunting in wide open spaces with the wind and flying ducks, then a ‘single reed’ call will help you get the attention of ducks. Although single reed calls have more range and versatility, they are harder to master than double reed calls.

Double reed calls have a more realistic sound, suited for closed in hunting spaces like flooded timber and beaver ponds. The double reed sounds more “ducky” and helps you pull the birds within twenty or thirty-yard gun range.

Double reed calls are a good choice for beginners are they easier to learn, which helps build confidence in a novice duck hunter.


Duck calls are effective only if used correctly. As duck behavior can change based on mood, weather or hunger, a hunter must be able to adapt his call to these moods. The duck call must be able to catch and hold the attention of the ducks within the hunting zone. Hence you must choose a call that will help you sound realistic and fit the moment.

Now let’s look at the duck calls which we have shortlisted.

5 Best Duck Calls Reviews

Buck Gardner Double Nasty Camo Green

This duck call offers beginners the range of a single reed duck call with the ease of use of a double reed call. It provides a loud call for drawing in ducks as well as a softer call for ducks within shooting range. It is durable and holds up well for a beginner to practice extensively before hunting.


  • Best duck call for beginners
  • Super easy to learn
  • Made of acrylic
  • Easy on wallet
  • Guaranteed to blow even if full of spit
  • Tone board and double reed allows a wide range of calls
  • Does not squeak or crack
  • Easily the most attractive call


  • Requires a lot of air to blow correctly
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Duck Commander Uncle Si

The single reed design is easy to blow for beginners. It is also durable and made from a sturdy polycarbonate. The Uncle Si call is durable and keeps its sound from season to season. The raspy sound is produced easily by beginners and is loud enough for use in wide open hunting spaces.


  • One of the best single reed duck call for beginners
  • Easy to blow and great for beginners
  • Extremely loud and best for wide open spaces
  • Super easy to clean and put back together
  • Made of extremely durable polycarbonate material


  • None really. Except that it’s too loud for smaller hunting spaces.
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Duck Commander Camo Max

The Duck Commander Camo Max is versatile and provides a precise mallard duck sound. The call can be loud but provides a quieter sound for closer spaces which is helpful for beginners. The double reed design is easy to learn for beginners.


  • One of the best double reed duck call for beginners
  • Super easy to use
  • Extremely versatile
  • Smooth quiet call but can be loud if needed
  • Lightweight, durable, made of hard polymer plastic


  • Reeds start sticking once it gets wet
  • Squeaks if blown too softly
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Haydels DR-85

The Haydels DR-85 is helpful for beginners as it allows for a full chromatic scale. It is also relatively inexpensive with the qualities of more premium products. The call is easy to learn for beginners and is quite useful for calling in mallards.


  • Best duck call for the money
  • Comparable to more premium calls
  • Full chromatic scale
  • Allows personal tuning
  • Loud to call in birds from long distances


  • Lacks instructions
  • Unattractive design
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Duck Commander Triple Threat

The Duck Commander Triple Threat features a triple reed design which helps beginners in producing extremely authentic duck sounds. You can disassemble it for cleaning without any worry as it doesn’t change its sound after reassembly.


  • Best mallard duck call for beginners
  • Most authentic and easy to learn
  • Easy to tune, operate and clean
  • Patented three reed design
  • Small and waterproof
  • Durable, made of polycarbonate material


  • Not suitable for cold weather
  • Can be too raspy for some hunters
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We have reviewed some of the best duck calls for beginners and provided different options as per your requirement. While shortlisting these duck calls, we paid a lot of attention to ease of use, durability, loudness, authenticity, and effectiveness.

List of best duck calls for beginners:

  1. Best Duck Call For Beginners — Buck Gardner Double Nasty
  2. Best Single Reed Duck Call — Duck Commander Uncle Si
  3. Best Double Reed Duck Call — Duck Commander Camo Max
  4. Best Duck Call For The Money — Haydels DR-85
  5. Best Mallard Duck Call — Duck Commander Triple Threat

Our choice for best duck call for the beginners is Buck Gardner Double Nasty which is a very good all-round call. Combined with its ease of use, it is simply the best duck for beginners. One of its biggest draws is ‘Spit Technology’ which allows the call to work even when full of spit.

While you will still have to practice this call a bit to be fully effective, it still has the shortest learning curve amongst all duck calls.

If you a fair idea about your requirements and the areas where you would be hunting, you can also look at other duck calls on our list.

If you are looking for a call which is extremely effective in wide open spaces, then you can consider Duck Commander Uncle Si for its loudness.

But if you are looking for a call specifically for mallards then Duck Commander Triple Threat could be your preferred choice.

I hope our review of best duck calls for beginners, helps you pick up a suitable duck call for your needs. If you used any of these calls, then do let us know your experience in the comments section. You may also check out our reviews of Best Goose Call For Beginners.

    1. Tanja Mahoney

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