What Are Duck Boots Good For?

What Are Duck Boots Good For?

An In-Depth Analysis of the Origin – and Migration Patterns – of the Men’s Duck Boot

If you’ve ever heard the phrase "duck boots," you’ve probably asked at least one of these questions.

  1. Do ducks wear boots?
  2. Are duck boots related to duct tape?

As you can see, there’s a lot of uncertainty around this subject. You might say confusion flocks to it. (See what we did there?) But, lucky for you, today we’re answering all of your most burning duck boot questions. So, as they say, "Quit flapping, and start listening."

What Are Duck Boots Anyway?

First, duck boots aren’t actually for ducks — nor are they made from ducks.* They were actually invented by a duck hunter in 1911. He noticed his hunting boots weren’t cutting it in the wet marshlands, so he decided to combine the waterproof elements of rubber rain boots with flexibility and comfort you’d find in leather hunting boots. And the “Maine Hunting Shoe” was born. 

The “duck” part of the duck boot came later because they were used primarily by duck hunters who often have to venture into muddy, swampy areas to find wild ducks and other water birds. Since many of these duck hunting areas were outside of Maine, and because other companies wanted to make their own versions of this fantastic footwear, the name was changed to what you're familiar with now, the trusty duck boot.

Now, you’ll notice we said “duck,” not “duct.” There’s a very simple reason for this: there’s no such thing as a duct boot. You may be thinking of duck tape, which is really called duct tape. It’s all very confusing, we know. Basically, duct tape is for fixing things. Duck boots are for your feet. And duct boots aren’t a thing. At least not yet. Unless, of course, you had a pair of duck boots designated specifically for cleaning your ducts. In which case they’d be duct duck boots.

Do Duck Boots Fly South for Winter?

Well, since we’ve already established that duck boots aren’t worn by ducks or made from ducks or made by ducks**, you can probably guess. Duck boots aren’t migratory. Technically, though, if you were to travel south for vacation and pack your boots in your suitcase with your swimsuit and summer tees, they would have migrated, right?  Kind of?

In all realness, these boots don’t fly. They don’t migrate. They do, however, keep your feet toasty warm during the winter and perfectly dry while trudging through the marshes pretty much any time of year. Or, you know — while wearing your men’s flannel shirt to look good at the coffee shop. I’m sure some duck hunter somewhere still favors duck boots as his footwear of choice when on the hunt, but for most people these days, duck boots are simply a functional and fashionable part of the wardrobe. Raining or not, they look great when paired with your favorite jeans. Even better, they make sure that you’ll never be caught off guard if the weather takes a sudden turn for the worse or a spring heatwave means all of the snow mounds along the curb have turned the road into an ankle-deep stream.  To put it quite simply, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t have a pair of these non-migratory boots in your closet, bird lover or not!

*If you thought this, you may also be pleased to know that cowboy boots aren’t made from male cows. Crazy, we know.

**We hadn’t actually established that last one, but just in case you were wondering, now you know.

Related Articles