Are your factory choke tubes just not cutting it? If so, you’ve come to the right place. In this guide we’ll take a look at the best waterfowl choke tubes for 2022 that provide extra downrange energy, tighter patterns, and better pellet distribution at longer ranges.
It’s important to keep in mind that developing great shotgun patterns is a delicate balancing act between the shotgun, choke, and ammo being used. If even one of these is off, your pattern could suffer. Patterning your shotgun with as many choke and ammo combinations is the key to finding what works the best in hunting situations.
- Best Waterfowl Choke Tubes List (extended)
- Best Waterfowl Choke Tubes
- Extended vs Non-Extended Choke Tubes
- Bottom Line
- Wondering what choke tube size you need?
Best Waterfowl Choke Tubes List (extended)
Best Waterfowl Choke Tubes
In this review we’ll discuss some of the best all around chokes for duck hunting that take a lot of the guess work out of finding a great patterning setup for your shotgun. Below are the top 5 best waterfowl choke tubes that can provide exceptional results beyond conventional factory choke tubes
Patternmaster choke tubes are one of the most widely known and used chokes used for duck and goose hunting. The classic extended ported design was one of the first of its kind. The optical ports are the solution to a problem that plagued fixed choke systems for many years.
The Patternmaster Code Black is designed with internal rings that strip the wad as it exits the barrel. This creates separation from the shot column at the last second which reduces negative effects that the wad can have on the shot. In turn, the amount of flyer pellets is reduced (more pellets reach the target) and the shot string is shorter (more pellets reach the target at once).
The Code Black choke tube is capable of keeping patterns together at up to 60 yards. It comes in both a Code Black Duck and Goose model depending on which you hunt the most. When choosing between Patternmaster code black goose vs duck, there is no difference in performance or choke tube diameter according to Patternmaster.
- Constructed out of Carpenter Custom 630 17-4ph stainless steel
- Durable Non-Reflective Bronze titanium coating
- Provides dense patterns and shorter shot strings out to 60 yards
- Works with steel, hevi-shot, and other non toxic shot
- Optimum results are with loads less than 1550fps
Kicks High Flyer tubes are another extended ported option to consider when looking for a new duck hunting choke tube. It features angled ports in the choke which help to channel pressures outward and away from the shooter, thus reducing felt recoil and muzzle jump which makes for quick follow up shots.
The Kicks High Flyer Choke Tube is available for almost every gauge and brand of shotgun, including Browning, Beretta, Benelli, Winchester, Mossberg, and Browning. You can find these chokes in 20 gauge, 12 gauge, and 10 gauge offerings.
The Kicks High Flyer choke can handle all types of shot including steel, lead, copper plated lead, Hevi-shot, and Bismuth. The angled ports offer up to a 20% increase in pattern density at longer ranges.
- Constructed out of high performance 17-4 PH grade stainless steel
- Angle ports for reduced recoil and muzzle jump
- Up to 20% pattern density increases at long ranges
- Available for almost every shotgun gauge and brand
- Black oxide coating for extra corrosion resistance
- Extends over 1 inch past the barrel for easy installation and removal
The Carlson’s Cremator Choke Tube was designed to deliver consistent patterns at long ranges. It features Triple Shot Technology (TST) which is a series of rings inside the choke that help constrict the wad and shot column gradually to produce better patterns.
The stud rings also help reduce flyer pellets and shot deformation resulting in a more even pattern distribution. This ported extended choke has a 25% greater parallel section which helps create tighter patterns and increases pellet density on target.
The Carlson’s Cremator Waterfowl Choke is made out of premium steel and coated for durability in harsh weather conditions.
- Triple Shot Technology gradually constricts the wad and shot column for improved patterns
- Available in Close Range (.717), Mid-Range (.707), and Long Range (.697)
- 25% greater parallel section improves pattern density
- Grooved for easy installation and removal
A lot of work went into developing Hevi-shot chokes to work with Hevi-shot ammunition and the results are pretty amazing. Hevi-shot waterfowl chokes come in both ported and non-ported versions. The ported version is grooved to allow for a gradual wad expansion from the shot column.
This design results in the shot leaving the choke before the wad and limits wad inference that can affect pattern density and pellet deformation. The grooved ports also allow for better pressure expansion that reduces recoil and dampens muzzle jump.
Hevi-shot chokes are available in both mid-range and extended range depending on the situation. Hevi-shot offers them in a two-pack to make it easier to carry them both into the field.
- Available for all popular shotgun brands and gauges
- Mid-range choke is best for decoying birds inside 35 yards, and the extended choke is for shots beyond 40 yards
- Grooved extended choke allows for reduced recoil and muzzle jump for quick follow up shots
- Designed specifically for Hevi-shot ammunition (Hevi-Metal, Hevi-Shot, Hevi-SNOW)
The Black Maxx Waterfowl Choke Tube was designed by Calrson’s to shoot just about any type of shot. It works well with steel, lead, Hevi-shot, and Bismuth which cuts down on the need to constantly change chokes.
Carlson’s Black Maxx choke tube is an extended ported choke designed to reduce recoil by diverting it away from the shooter. It also offers dense patterns downrange that exceed results from conventional choke tubes. The Black Maxx is constructed of 17-4 heat-treated stainless steel and coated with black oxide for even more corrosion resistance.
- Ported grooves provide increased grip for installation and removal in the field
- Optical Ports reduce recoil and muzzle jump allowing for quick follow up shots
- Can be used will all types of shot (steel, lead, hevi-shot, bismuth)
- Easy to read choke constriction printed on the end
- Knurled ring for added grip
Extended vs Non-Extended Choke Tubes
Do you really need an extended choke? NO! But all things equal, the extended choke offers a few additional features that non-extended (or flush chokes) don’t provide.
First, extended choke tubes are easy to remove without a choke wrench since they usually extend 1-2 inches beyond the end of the barrel. Knurled material and groves on the end of extended chokes also make griping it easier in order to screw it on and off.
Secondly, extended chokes can help protect the end of the shotgun barrel by acting as a sacrificial barrier. If you lean your shotgun against things or bump the end of the barrel into objects, the choke will take the brunt of the damage and not the barrel itself.
In addition to these factors, extended chokes also provide a platform for ported technology that can help create wad separation from the shot column. This can increase pattern density and reduce recoil.
Do extended choke tubes provide better patterns?
Extended choke tubes can outperform stock choke tubes in the field. When using extended chokes, it’s vital to think about things like ammo and choke constriction.
The ability to remove the choke without a choke wrench since it extends over the barrel, the ability to view the choke size stamped on the side of the choke without removing it, and the fact that most aftermarket choke tubes are extended are all advantages of using extended choke tubes.
You’re limited to the diameter of chokes that come with the shotgun if you use factory choke tubes. Three choke tubes, ranging in diameter from open to tight, are commonly used. Extended choke tubes provide you more alternatives when it comes to customizing your choke and ammo.
Does it really matter if a choke tube is marked for ducks or geese?
No, it’s not true. Choke tubes are frequently branded for ducks or geese, but this is generally done only for marketing purposes. Some makers claim it’s made to make choosing a choke tube simple, and although that may be true for casual waterfowl hunters, a duck or goose label doesn’t convey the whole story.
All that matters is the choke tube’s diameter. For duck hunting, some choke tubes may have open chokes, whereas for goose hunting, they may have tighter chokes. It makes sense to label the choke by species in this circumstance. However, this is rarely the case, as most choke tubes are identical regardless of whether duck or goose is inscribed on them.
Always compare technical parameters and examine the choke diameter. Compare technical specifications of each choke tube rather than relying on a duck or goose designation.
Aftermarket choke tubes can help produce superior patterning results to those of factory choke tubes. For waterfowling, this means dense patterns in the field and the ability to cleanly harvest birds while reducing cripples.
One of the best choke tubes for waterfowl is the Patternmaster Code Black. It’s an extended ported choke that is designed to deliver dense patterns and even pellet distribution out to 60 yards.
For a budget choke for duck hunting, the Carlson’s Cremator is the best choice. It can increase pattern density 20% beyond that of conventional choke tubes at an affordable price.
Whichever choke you end up choosing, make sure to pattern your shotgun with it before you head out in the field. It’s the only way to know how your shotgun, choke, and ammo are performing in the duck blind.
Wondering what choke tube size you need?
Check out this table for most shotgun choke diameters
Last update on 2022-02-05 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API