We developed as a result of receiving hundreds of inquiries from folks seeking training on the specifics of being a top notch waterfowl guide. Holding true to our mission of “Pioneering Innovation in Guide, Packer and Outfitter Training”, Swan Mountain Wilderness Guide School really delivered!

Our duck, goose & waterfowl guide training course has been designed from scratch based on interviews with waterfowl outfitters throughout the country. We tailored the curriculum to the specific needs of outfitters hiring new waterfowl guides. Swan Mountain Wilderness Guide School will cover the various methods and species of duck and goose found throughout North America. We address facets of guiding throughout the various parts of the country, as certain parts of the US and Canada hunt ducks and geese differently.

Topics covered

Nature and Behavior of Ducks & Geese

When you train with Swan Mountain Guide school to become a goose or duck hunting guide, you’ll learn:

  • to identify different species and varieties of duck and geese,
  • their habitat,
  • season’s ranges and migration,
  • behaviors; including calls they make: in flight, territorial, male/female,
  • socialization,
  • impact of the weather on their flight behavior

Where to Go

undefinedScouting optimal locations; habitat characteristics; time of year as well as time to hit certain locations; locations, lakes, water holes fields, refuges; waterfowling throughout North America: hot spots in the country, opportunities in Canada and Mexico, flyways and seasons.

Hunting Techniques

undefinedHunting ducks, goose and other waterfowl from boats and canoes; classic blind hunting over decoys; jump shooting; glassing; field scouting; observing; mapping and recording; making a blind; shooting techniques and helping clients be successful; guns: types, safety, performance, issues; ammunition: types, comparatives, performance; true ballistics instruction so candidates can intelligently discuss issues with clients and project trajectories by ammunition type and load for purposes of success at longer distances

Waterfowling Skills

undefinedThe decoy spread placement and positioning, and flagging; concealment; calling; dog handling; maintaining sites; camouflage and concealment; thorough review of equipment including binoculars, range finders, calls, clothing, waterproof wear, waders and all aspects of footwear; scheduling and keeping it fun in bad weather

Guiding Clients

Personal professional standards in appearance & behavior; customer service including communication of expectations, dealing with troubling issues, controlling client behavior; critical success factors in hunting guiding; the guides personal gear including product review and packing strategy; care of birds including all forms of field dress and meat preparation and transport under various conditions; review of knives and sharpening techniques; full coverage of hunter ethics and difficult client scenarios; safety for yourself & client around dangerous game; taking quality photographs of your client’s successes.

Outdoorsmanship and Woodsmanship

undefinedOrienteering including use of, compass, GPS maps, day/night/bad weather navigation; wilderness survival including safety and prevention of common maladies, emergency procedures & evacuation, emergency shelters and fire starting;

Hunting Laws, Rules and Ethics & Responsibilities

undefinedLaws & rules coverage from the perspective of the federal and state governments including private & public land use; legal & ethical responsibility of the outfitter and guide; conservation issues; resource scarcity, environmental concerns, activist group interaction, future impacts of further conflicts between groups; learning how to treat personnel and cultivate positive relationships with governing agencies.

Career Development & Finding A Guide Job

undefinedCreating an image that will get you hired and make you more money; creating a resume; thorough review of outfitter hiring behavior and how to make initial contact, follow-up and secure a position; realistic purview of length of employment and compensation; off-season opportunities and how to combat having this be a short lived career; doing your due diligence; internet tools for finding a job; critical success factors to help you secure employment;

Health, Safety & Welfare

undefinedWilderness first aid versus standard first aid; drilling down on all aspects of safety for client and staff; hunting in bear country; wilderness citizenship.

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