Haydel’s Game Calls is family owned and operated, and is nationally recognized as a leader in the manufacture of the finest quality game calls. Haydel’s founder and his sons are national champion callers, and the majority of Haydel’s employees are both hunters and callers.The most impressive feature of a Haydel’s Game Call is its ability to “blow wet”. This original idea is a major factor in our tremendous success and growth. The current Haydel’s catalog features well over 150 items. We have a staff of twelve people, with over forty independent sales representatives located throughout the United States and Canada.Haydel’s products are also sold in Russia, Australia, New Zealand, and throughout Europe.Haydel’s Game Calls products are marketed through catalog sales, dealer/distributor sales, and the Internet. We participate in approximately 20-25 trade shows each year, in addition to conducting clinics and seminars at various sporting goods stores in selected locations. Our founder and his sons have been featured on national television programs such as ESPN, Cabin Country, Outdoors in the Heartland, GAR Outdoors, Northwest Hunter, Louisiana Outdoor Adventures, and Outdoor Tips and Tales.Haydel’s constantly seeks feedback from customers, dealers and sales representatives. This feedback, together with our own experience as hunters and outdoorsmen, helps support our commitment to producing the finest game calls available today.
Eli Haydel was born in Raceland, Louisiana, in the heart of duck and goose country, where his father worked at a sugar refinery. Hunting was an important part of his family’s life, and because Raceland is also Cajun country, so was music. At age fourteen, Eli began to play the clarinet and saxophone. He received no formal training and never learned to read music. He played by ear. It was this combined love of music and hunting that would lead Eli to become a champion caller and later to found Haydel’s Game Calls, Inc.
In 1958, Eli moved to north Louisiana and after serving in the Air Force, made his home in Bossier City. As Eli got older, he continued to love hunting – and calling. In 1975, he began to enter calling contests, and became a champion caller. He was frustrated though, because when his duck or goose call got wet, the wood swelled and the call wouldn’t work right.
Eli decided to eliminate this problem by making a call from non-porous material. It was slow, hard work. But working in the garage of his home, Eli soon developed his new idea. After he handed out a few to his hunter friends, word spread quickly and the demand was tremendous. Eli’s initial investment was approximately $400.The original Haydel’s calls were somewhat crude, but hunters didn’t care. They were impressed that they would “blow wet”. Eli began marketing his idea by putting his product on consignment in local sporting goods stores. His credibility with stores was helped by the fact that he and his sons were nationally recognized champion callers. Eli’s original marketing plan was simple. He took a fishbowl to each store. In the fishbowl, he put a rubber duck with a game call suspended from the duck‘s neck and submerged under water. A sign on the fishbowl simply said “Blows When Wet”.
The stores couldn’t get enough. It took quite a few years for Eli to become an “overnight success”, but in 1985, Eli Haydel left his job to devote full-time efforts to Haydel’s Game Calls. Since that time, Haydel’s has enjoyed tremendous growth – growth that Eli proudly points out has been accomplished without ever having to borrow money. In addition to providing the finest game calls available, Eli Haydel was committed to providing and maintaining a family atmosphere for Haydel’s employees.
Because Haydel’s employees have a genuine interest in hunters and hunting, Eli’s relationship with his employees often reached outside the office environment. It is relationship with employees, dealers, and customers, along with his ready ear for any ideas or suggestions for making a better call, that has helped contribute to Haydel’s continued growth. Eli was an honorary trustee of “Ducks Unlimited”, and a member of the Louisiana Wildlife Federation. Although he never learned to read music, Eli Haydel was an accomplished clarinet and saxophone player, occasionally sitting in with local bands. He credited this, along with his southern Louisiana Cajun heritage, as partially responsible for his business success.
Eli’s son, Rod Haydel, currently serves as president of Haydel’s Game Calls. As president, he is responsible for all day-to-day operations for Haydel’s Game Calls, Inc. Like his father, Rod is an accomplished musician. In fact, he actually began his college education with a full scholarship in music. As the company grew however, Rod changed his major to pursue and complete a degree in marketing. Rod also shares Eli’s love for hunting and is a champion caller in his own right. Both Rod and Eli have been inducted into the “Shreveport Sports’ Hall of Fame”, and Rod has played a key role in developing a wide variety of new and innovative products for Haydel’s Game Calls. He has also been featured on numerous national outdoor television programs and in outdoor sports magazines. Like his father, Rod is committed to keeping Haydel’s Game Calls a company that is “for hunters, by hunters”.