Flocked | No
Motion | Flapping wing decoy
Features | Realistic Model
Remote | HD remote kit ready (sold separately)
Batteries | 4 AA (not included)
Stake/Stand | 3 piece 42" stake
Country of Origin | Imported
Warranty | 1year mfg. defect
Price | $79.99
Is the Lucky Duck Flapper Teal HD a game-changer, or just another motion decoy? We bought a Flapper Teal HD, tested it on a few duck hunts, and found out if it’s good to go, or a hard pass. The Flapper Teal HD is not currently available on Amazon, but is on the Lucky Duck website.
We’ve used spinner decoys for a few seasons, so we decided to mix things up with a flapping wing decoy. We have also tested out a range of decoys from dove to waterfowl, from just as wide a range of decoy manufacturers, so this wasn’t our first rodeo. Like many Lucky Duck products, the Flapper Teal HD looks really good, but its durability may not be on par with manufacturing from other companies, like MOJO. The Decoy arrives well packaged, using molded cardboard inserts, similar to wine bottle packaging, that keep the decoy, stand, and parts from moving and scuffing. Because of the packaging effort, it was even more surprising that our Flapper Teal HD had some large and very noticeable scuffs where the paint had been scraped from the decoy.
The most noticeable scuff, visible on the cheek in the featured photo and video, is glaring. It is disappointing to receive what is essentially a blemished item for a brand new price and doesn’t speak positively to product quality control or durability. Of course, the scuff does not affect the mechanical function of the decoy and is purely aesthetic, but a brand new decoy shouldn’t look like it has been hauled in and out of the field for a full season.
We had concerns about quality in general, because of the underwhelming unboxing, which was justified when we tried to get the Flapper Teal HD ready for field tests. We tried to insert batteries into the single row, 4 cell AA battery compartment. The batteries were exceptionally snug, and the battery compartment cover did a poor job securing the batteries and completing the circuit. It required some manipulation to complete the circuit. However, under very little pressure, the detents that held the battery cover plate in place broke. The inability to secure batteries and complete a circuit rendered the brand new Flapper Teal HD completely unusable.
Determined to do our tests the following day, we autopsied the decoy, and soldered a more standard 4 cell battery compartment, stuffed it into the decoy, and put the decoy back together. The experience and the decoy autopsy confirmed what was apparent during our unboxing, that Lucky Duck really dropped the ball on manufacturing and product quality. After a frustrating hour of re-engineering and repairing, the Flapper Teal HD was patched up and ready for the field the next morning.
In the field, the Flapper Teal HD looks good. But the flapping motion is a little underwhelming. It could probably have a stronger or more aggressive wing beat to do a better job of attracting ducks. The angle of the wings is also parallel with the surface of the water, so the wing color and design are more visible from directly above, where wing motion is less apparent. A slight cant to the wings would probably make the decoy more effective, at least more visible, at a greater range of angles and distances.
The claimed 6-8 hour battery life was consistent with its performance. However, the bottom end of the range is probably more accurate, and it’s hard to account for temperature-dependent battery chemistry and performance. In other words, we got over six hours of use, but your mileage may vary based on the batteries you use, the temperatures, and settings.
We plugged a Lucky Duck HD Receiver into the Flapper Teal HD so that we could operate it remotely. Because the decoy and remotes were all Lucky Duck products, they were plug-and-play and functioned perfectly. That is perhaps the only positive thing we can say about Lucky Duck in general, following our disappointing experience with the Flapper, and similar concerns over product design and quality regarding the Lucky Dove Rapid Flyer. See the full Lucky Dove Rapid Flyer review.
In the early morning light, we observed quite a few Teal flaring into the flapper. We even observed one drake hover within inches of the Flapper Teal HD for a few seconds, before sensing it was unnatural and leaving. The close-up effect that the decoy had on Teal was pretty amazing, it was even fun to watch. It continued to help Teal commit to the decoy spread over the next couple of hours.
Green Teal readily decoy anyway, but the Flapper Teal HD decoy had them confidently coming into the spread and loitering because of the unique flapping motion. Great experiences in the field aside, the Lucky Duck Flapper Teal HD is a terrible product. The whole experience was a sad one for us because we really wanted to like the Flapper Teal HD.
Unless you enjoy re-engineering brand new products, before they are usable, steer clear. We can’t call the Flapper Teal HD a complete piece of shit, because its performance in the field was great, fun even. If the battery compartment hadn’t been too tight and had not broken, maybe things would be different. However, the disappointing and sad truth of the whole thing is, hard-earned dollars would be much better spent elsewhere. For 80 dollars, a mechanical decoy should be much more refined, and not an experiment in product design and manufacturing quality at the expense of a consumer.
For the same price, we could confidently recommend a MOJO Elite Series Teal, or any other spinner, but avoid the Flapper Teal HD until Lucky Duck makes some significant product improvements, and addresses some dismal quality issues.