Joe Genzel



  • Expertise and interests include waterfowl, turkeys, upland birds, small-game hunting, hunting dogs, deer hunting, and clay shooting.
  • Genzel enjoys meeting new, exceptional people in the remote places this job takes me.
  • Previous work experience: Peoria Journal Star, Kalamazoo Gazette, Yuma Sun, Outdoor Sportsman Group, Sportsman Channel

About Me

Joe Genzel grew up chasing mallards and Canada geese on the banks and backwaters of the Illinois River with his late father. Waterfowling remains Genzel’s first passion, but he also loves to hunt squirrels, rabbits, and raccoons behind his West Siberian Laika, Vladimir. Genzel still lives in the Illinois River Valley with his wife and son, holding out hope they will both one day agree to move to the waterfowl-rich Texas coastal prairie…or at least spend the second split there with him every season.


Genzel started his journalism career as a sports reporter for his hometown newspaper, the Peoria Journal Star in 2002. He moved into outdoor magazines a decade later by becoming an associate editor for Gun Dog, Wildfowl, and Petersen’s Hunting. He also worked in television production during his time at all three titles. Genzel was hired at Outdoor Life in the fall of 2019. He has duck hunted with and learned from some of the best waterfowlers of his generation. Genzel is an avid sporting clays and skeet shooter as well, and considers former Field and Stream shooting editor, Bob Brister, F&S shotgun editor Phil Bourjaily, Outdoor Life shooting editor John B. Snow, and freelance writer John M. Taylor being his foremost influences on shooting technique and shotgun expertise.


Genzel graduated from Illinois State University, majoring in American History with a minor in English.

“The best piece of advice I ever heard was from a hunting buddy, who said: ‘Shoot that banded goose’ right before I missed it three times.”

- Joe Genzel

More from Joe Genzel

the best goose decoys

Best Goose Decoys of 2023

How to call ducks and geese.

Goose Hunting Tips and Tactics

The Best Layout Blinds of 2023

We reviewed the best over/under shotguns.

The Best Over/Under Shotguns of 2023

Joseph Fanizzi is a three-time NSCA sub-junior champion. He shoots Beretta's gas-operated A400 Xcel.

The Best Shotguns for Sporting Clays of 2023, Tested and Reviewed

Federal TSS performs better with more choke.

The Best Turkey Chokes of 2023

Duck hunter holds one of the best 20 gauge shotguns.

The Best 20 Gauge Shotguns of 2023