The decoys in the photo at the top of the page were made for a seabird restoration project in California.They are life sized, so measure about 16" from tip of beak to tip of tail. They are carved of pine and cedar and head positions vary. Over the years we've learned that they attract their feathered compatriots better if they aren't all exactly the same. That's why we carve the heads and bodies separately and then join them. That's one of the advantages of using carved decoys as opposed to molded decoys, or what around here are known as "rubber ducks." A further advantage is that weathered decoys can later be sold or auctioned as fundraisers in order to finance continued restoration efforts.
A typical project order for us is 50 decoys, but this was an especially large one. After carving, assembly, sanding, and sealing they look like this...
Here's what it looked like in our shop the day we finished painting all of those 300 Forster's Terns.
(Actually we made 20 extra just to have some on hand.)
In case you wondered, and many do, we use a marine sealer and the color coats are acrylic.
Those two benches are 24' long, and there's not much more than a finger's width between decoys.
These particular decoys are a bit unusual in that they have painted eyes.
Most tern decoys don't, but we aim to please, and every order seems to have a particular request.
We're glad to accommodate them, because they have the local knowledge
that will make their decoys more attractive to the seabirds in their area.
Here are some of those very same terns deployed on the California Coast.
And yes, we ship world wide.
Obviously, we make LOTS of decoys. We enjoy working with project directors because we always learn something in the process.
We also enjoy providing decoys for home and office decoration.
You likely won't need quite this many, but even if you do, we'll be glad to help.