Carvajal Wins 2023 World Cutdown Calling Championship at Delta Waterfowl Expo

Arkansas native claims highly prized title in a field of 58 talented competitors

Forrest Carvajal, 2023 World Cutdown Calling Championship winner can be seen with an official from Delta Waterfowl after being presented with his trophy and title at the Duck Hunters Expo in Little Rock, AR.

On July 29, the Statehouse Convention Center in Little Rock, Arkansas, played host to the World Cutdown Duck Calling Championship, in conjunction with the Delta Waterfowl Duck Hunters Expo. The event, sponsored by Mack’s Prairie Wings and Drake Waterfowl, ultimately crowned Forrest Carvajal of Greenbrier, Arkansas, as “King of the Cutdown.”

The placings were determined by a panel of five hand-selected judges with prizes and payouts awarded to the top five cutdown callers:

First – Forrest Carvajal, Greenbrier, Arkansas

Second – Dallas Odom, Little Rock, Arkansas

Third – Seth Fields, Ramer, Tennessee

Fourth – Ethan McPeak, El Dorado Springs, Missouri

Fifth – Mason Norman, Donaldson, Arkansas

Carvajal resides north of Little Rock with his wife, two sons, and British Lab. He is also the founder of Pond Creek Duck Calls, a custom call-making company whose name was inspired by Pond Creek National Wildlife Refuge—the very place where he first learned to hunt and call with his grandfather.

“I got into duck calling as soon as I got into duck hunting, when I was 11,” he said. “The biggest draw to me was calling the ducks just because I was a kid, and I liked to make noise.” At 15, he won a local main street junior calling contest and became hooked on collecting calls and competition calling.

The cutdown is a specially modified duck call long favored by timber hunters in Arkansas and on the Lower Illinois River. Inspired by this history, renowned callers Jim Ronquest and Heath Vanlandingham created the world championship specifically for the use of this type of call. Each competitor brings his or her own unique talent to the annual event.

“When I started calling, John Stephens (founder of Rich-N-Tone Duck Calls) was probably the person I tried to mimic the most,” Carvajal explained. “And even to this day, that’s the person I try to sound like.”

In addition to the trophy, Carvajal took home a Franchi Affinity Series shotgun from Mack’s Prairie Wings, a waterfowl hunting gear package and gift card from Drake Waterfowl, and $2,500 cash, along with other prizes.

“It’s a world championship!” Carvajal said. “I can’t put into words what it means. It’s huge for me.”—Christy Sweigart