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The LeMaster Method -- Waterfowl Identification by Richard LeMaster

Learn how to identify the different species of waterfowl.



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Code: 10811
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The LeMaster Method back cover

Copyright 1986, 75 pages, spiral bound, color photos and illustrations

Dick LeMaster's observations of the size and shape of duck bills provide an entirely new tool for recognizing species. Dick is an unusually gifted person who has given up a lucrative business in industrial model-building to further his first love, waterfowl. His talent and enthusiasm as a display decoy carver resulted in his first book Wildlife in Wood. His experience in preserving the living qualities of ducks in wood has given Dick knowledge of form, feather arrangement, and color privy to few if any, professionals. With his acute eye and photographic memory, he has observed differences between species that have heretofore been overlooked by professionals. In addition to his bill identification technique, Dick also focuses attention on another unique field identification concept, that of local altitudinal flight stratification. His renditions of heads, wings, and ducks in flight highlight specific differences that further aid identification. All in all, the contents of this booklet represent a significant breakthrough which will prove to be a blessing to the beginning waterfowler and veteran alike.

Frank C. Bellrose

Wildlife Specialist, Illinois Natural History Survey

From the Author:

This guide introduces new aids for identifying waterfowl. One identifies the species of duck in hand; the other assists in determining the species in flight.

A duck in hand can be identified by the size and shape of its bill. Charts are provided for the user to match a bill in hand with the outlines of the particular species. The full size and shape of the bill is repeated on the pages for each species, along with information to solidify the selection. Juveniles of both sexes have bills that are slightly smaller, but even these will fall within the basic size and shape of the species. Color of the bill is of lesser importance because it will vary with age and season.

Although positive identification is provided through this method, it should be understood that every effort should be made to identify a duck before you have it in hand. To aid in flight identification, this method introduces a new dimension -- levels (strata or layer) of flight that the various species fly in over open water, and these are divided into four distinct levels. The study and use of this dimension, coupled with flock characteristics and species markings, will aid your in-flight identification.

Through artwork, I have shown only what you should focus your attention on. In flight; the relative shades formed are more apparent than distinctive color and definition. For identifying birds in hand, I have shown only heads and the area on the wing that is of the greatest importance -- all other detail is omitted to avoid confusion.

Good luck, and may our paths cross many times.

Richard LeMaster

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Customer Reviews

10 Reviews
70% (7)
20% (2)
10% (1)
0% (0)
0% (0)
100% Recommend this product (10 of 10 responses)
By Robby V.
October 3, 2023
The material cannot get wet.
  • One of the best for identification
  • Should be a water resistant material
By Jeff G.
Worden Montana
Duck identification
March 5, 2022
Great book, small enough to take into the field to help identify ducks. I'm thinking of getting pages laminated to protect it in my hunting bag. I've been a duck hunter for over 50 years and learned some new tips for duck I'd. Can't wait until next fall, shoot some ducks and check them to the book.
  • It highlights using the bill for id. I was aware of some of the characteristics but not all. It also has for telling difference in hens and drake's with similar ducks such as Gadwalls and Blackducks.
  • To my preference it would be better to group like ducks together in consecutive pages. Puddle ducks in one section diving ducks in another. I would like to see similar ducks together like mallards, blackducks, gadwalls. All of the teal together. Mergansers together, scalp lesser, greater and ring neck ducks together. I thought it odd that Canvasbacks and Redheads were not on consecutive pages. This is a pretty complaint, the book is very good with id tips which is the whole goal.
By Robert G.
Review for The LeMaster Method -- Waterfowl Identification by Richard LeMaster
November 17, 2016
I give my books to youth hunters. They love them.
By Matthew K.
Review for The LeMaster Method -- Waterfowl Identification by Richard LeMaster
December 27, 2015
I have several buddies that I have introduced to duck hunting, and this product has many insightful tips that have helped them in the identification of birds in the field. I would recommend this title to any new waterfowler.
By Mike T.
Review for The LeMaster Method -- Waterfowl Identification by Richard LeMaster
December 25, 2015
Best waterfowl ID book I've found.
By Bruce H.
Review for The LeMaster Method -- Waterfowl Identification by Richard LeMaster
December 16, 2015
Good information, but not something I would take in the field. Pages are flimsy magazine like paper.
By C H.
Review for The LeMaster Method -- Waterfowl Identification by Richard LeMaster
June 30, 2015
comparison of bills of Cinnamon Teal and Blue-winged Teal minimize rather than emphasize the difference between the two, especially compared to my experience in hand.
By Clint R.
Review for The LeMaster Method -- Waterfowl Identification by Richard LeMaster
April 29, 2015
Great book to have around. Quick, easy identification of waterfowl with this book.
By Scott C.
Review for The LeMaster Method -- Waterfowl Identification by Richard LeMaster
May 5, 2014
This is a must have for any duck hunter. I've settled a lot of arguments over hybrid species by using this book to identify the different species to make up the hybrid duck. I recommend this book to anybody to properly ID waterfowl species. It would be better if it included geese though.
By Justin C.
Review for The LeMaster Method -- Waterfowl Identification by Richard LeMaster
November 23, 2013
The book is great. Very great service and very fast shipping.

Thank you.

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