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A Rare Flying Mallard Drake Decoy by Augustus Aaron Wilson
South Portland, Maine, circa 1935
Length 23", Wingspan 24"
Literature: Joe Engers, ed. The Great Book of Waterfowl Decoys (Thunder Bay Press, Inc., 1990), pp. 36–39.
Courtesy of RJG Antiques/Russ & Karen Goldberger

This flying mallard drake was meant to be hung over a group of floating decoys as if it were about to land. It differs from most decoys in that it has a sense of movement, typical of those made by Augustus A. Wilson. A lighthouse keeper who made a lifelong study of waterfowl, Wilson was ingenious at rendering their likeness to suggest activity. In addition to his rare flyers, he is known to have made decoys with rocking heads, feeding heads, back preeners, breast preeners, and raised wings.

This fat-bodied decoy in dry original condition, with age shrinkage evident at the body seams, was recently found in a Vermont hunting camp. The decoy is featured on the cover of Russ Goldberger’s current color catalogue.

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