Loading Spinner

Duck Decoys

Considered prized relics of American folk art, collectible duck decoys have a history that runs parallel to the settlement and growth of North America. This evolution introduced a diverse number of wood carvers including Elmer Crowell, the Ward brothers, Lathrop T. Holmes, Delbert Daisey, and Charles Perdew. The evolution also prompted the establishment of decoy factories that capitalized on demand across the commercial and sport hunting industries.

Native Americans were the earliest known makers of duck decoys, using reeds, grass, and rushes to construct lifelike replicas. As North America was settled through the 1700s and 1800s, high restaurant demand for waterfowl brought market hunting to fruition. Concurrently, the need for duck decoys rose as commercial hunters often used 50 to 100 decoys or more on the water. The industry changed again once the Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918 was enacted, making commercial waterfowl hunting illegal. The popularity of game hunting grew, and wooden decoys remained an important trade.

When deciding which duck decoys to collect, some enthusiasts choose to gather decoys by bird type, carver, or even decoy position. The value of a resulting collection then depends on a combination of factors including condition, rarity, and carver. Altogether, decoys representing birds not typically hunted and decoys representing birds hunted with fewer decoys tend to hold higher value.


Quick Facts

  • During the Ford presidency, First Lady Betty Ford would often use carved waterfowl as centerpieces at White House dinners
  • The Smithsonian National Art Museum holds an expansive collection of duck decoys. The earliest is made by Native Americans, dating back to a period between 400 B.C. and 100 A.D.
  • Guyette and Deeter, Inc. specializes in selling decoys, holding four major auctions each year and weekly online auctions

Recommended Items at Auction

See all items

Early North Carolina Duck Decoy
Dec 03, 10:00 AM EST
Early North Carolina Duck Decoy
by Mebane Antique Auction
Est: $100- $10,000
$29012 Bids
Early Eastern North Carolina Shorebird Decoy
Dec 03, 10:00 AM EST
Early Eastern North Carolina Shorebird Decoy
by Mebane Antique Auction
Est: $100- $10,000
$21010 Bids
Important N.C. Pintail Duck Decoy
Dec 03, 10:00 AM EST
Important N.C. Pintail Duck Decoy
by Mebane Antique Auction
Est: $100- $10,000
$1407 Bids
Antique Duck Decoy w Glass Eyes
Dec 02, 5:00 PM EST
Antique Duck Decoy w Glass Eyes
by Plain City Auction
Est: $5- $100
$406 Bids
Dodge Glass eye Yellowlegs
Dec 03, 12:00 PM EST
Dodge Glass eye Yellowlegs
by South Bay Auctions Inc
Est: $2,000- $4,000
$3,7006 Bids
Ben Heinemann Mallard Drake Duck Decoy
Dec 03, 10:00 AM EST
Ben Heinemann Mallard Drake Duck Decoy
by Mebane Antique Auction
Est: $100- $10,000
$804 Bids
DAN HARRIS CANVAS DECOY
Nov 27, 10:00 AM EST
DAN HARRIS CANVAS DECOY
by Ledbetter Auctions
Est: $100- $200
$404 Bids
Early North Carolina Carved Duck Decoy
Dec 03, 10:00 AM EST
Early North Carolina Carved Duck Decoy
by Mebane Antique Auction
Est: $100- $10,000
$1104 Bids
Chesapeake Redhead Duck Goose Decoy
Dec 03, 10:00 AM EST
Chesapeake Redhead Duck Goose Decoy
by Mebane Antique Auction
Est: $100- $10,000
$1103 Bids
Currituck N.C. Knotts Island Carved Duck Decoy
Dec 03, 10:00 AM EST
Currituck N.C. Knotts Island Carved Duck Decoy
by Mebane Antique Auction
Est: $100- $10,000
$1103 Bids
bp parity badge
CECIL HENDERSON HAND CARVED DUCK DECOY SCULPTURE
Dec 03, 9:00 AM MST
CECIL HENDERSON HAND CARVED DUCK DECOY SCULPTURE
by Bradford's
Est: $0- $0
$503 Bids
Mason Old Squaw Drake Duck Decoy
Dec 03, 10:00 AM EST
Mason Old Squaw Drake Duck Decoy
by Mebane Antique Auction
Est: $100- $10,000
$703 Bids
Early North Carolina Duck Decoy
Dec 03, 10:00 AM EST
Early North Carolina Duck Decoy
by Mebane Antique Auction
Est: $100- $10,000
$652 Bids
TORRY WARD HAND MADE WOODEN DUCK DECOY GAME, HUNTING, FISHING, ADVERTISING, VINTAGE, TAXIDERMY
Nov 28, 11:00 AM CST
TORRY WARD HAND MADE WOODEN DUCK DECOY GAME, HUNTING, FISHING, ADVERTISING, VINTAGE, TAXIDERMY
by Col. Christie Hatman, Auctioneer
Est: $0- $0
$552 Bids
Dodge Dowitcher
Dec 03, 12:00 PM EST
Dodge Dowitcher
by South Bay Auctions Inc
Est: $2,000- $4,000
$1,6002 Bids
Painted Wood Duck Decoy, Signed Rob Daley
Nov 29, 10:00 AM EST
Painted Wood Duck Decoy, Signed Rob Daley
by Weschler's
Est: $30- $50
$202 Bids
THREE HAND CARVED DECORATIVE DECOYS
Nov 28, 6:00 PM PST
THREE HAND CARVED DECORATIVE DECOYS
by O'Gallerie
Est: $200- $300
$1102 Bids
Jake Mowery Pa. Canvasback Duck Decoy
Dec 03, 10:00 AM EST
Jake Mowery Pa. Canvasback Duck Decoy
by Mebane Antique Auction
Est: $100- $10,000
$501 Bid
Wallace O'Neal Currituck N.C. Redhead Duck Decoy
Dec 03, 10:00 AM EST
Wallace O'Neal Currituck N.C. Redhead Duck Decoy
by Mebane Antique Auction
Est: $100- $10,000
$501 Bid
W. Thompson Currituck N.C. Canvasback Duck Decoy
Dec 03, 10:00 AM EST
W. Thompson Currituck N.C. Canvasback Duck Decoy
by Mebane Antique Auction
Est: $100- $10,000
$501 Bid
Ben Heinemann Mallard Hen Duck Decoy
Dec 03, 10:00 AM EST
Ben Heinemann Mallard Hen Duck Decoy
by Mebane Antique Auction
Est: $100- $10,000
$501 Bid
Antique Wooden Duck Decoy
Dec 04, 1:00 PM CST
Antique Wooden Duck Decoy
by Mike Nichols Auctions
Est: $1,000- $20,000
$101 Bid
WATERFIELD FAMILY WOODEN WORKING DECOY
Nov 27, 10:00 AM EST
WATERFIELD FAMILY WOODEN WORKING DECOY
by Ledbetter Auctions
Est: $200- $400
$501 Bid

Sellers Who Sell Duck Decoys


Mebane Antique Auction

Mebane Antique Auction

Designer Homes of Central Florida

Designer Homes of Central Florida

South Bay Auctions Inc

South Bay Auctions Inc