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Help with management

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Help with management

Postby gobblesandgrunts » Tue Nov 05, 2019 4:44 pm

So my family has about a 300 acre farm. It's in southern middle TN, holds tons of turkeys each year. There were cattle on it but since they were all sold about 5 years ago I've noticed it growing up more in the hardwoods, cedar thickets by the branch etc. Ive also noticed the turkeys have moved to the back of the farm but I'm seeing more deer every year. Especially last 2-3 years. My question is how to hold the bucks I have on my property through the season. I usually have about 2 maybe 3 good bucks on camera, know what their patterns are etc as well as a slew of young bucks. But fall will roll around and it's back to does and small bucks that I've had on camera all summer. I MIGHT get an occasional picture or see a good buck during the rut only once, maybe twice a hunting season. Where do they go and why wont other bucks shift their range onto my farm as mine do to others farm. There really isn't that much other habitat around our farm. Any help appreciate

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Re: Help with management

Postby fairchaser » Tue Nov 05, 2019 6:23 pm

Food and sanctuary will keep the does close to home. The bucks will find the ladies. Sanctuary is really key. Some place with heavy cover that is virtually impenetrable like a 50 acre 3-5 year old cutover. That will hold your does and the bucks will travel back and forth like a “rent by the hour” motel. Also a large 25 acre destination food plot in the center would help too. Don’t hunt either of those but only the travel routes to and from.
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Re: Help with management

Postby gobblesandgrunts » Tue Nov 05, 2019 6:38 pm

fairchaser wrote:Food and sanctuary will keep the does close to home. The bucks will find the ladies. Sanctuary is really key. Some place with heavy cover that is virtually impenetrable like a 50 acre 3-5 year old cutover. That will hold your does and the bucks will travel back and forth like a “rent by the hour” motel. Also a large 25 acre destination food plot in the center would help too. Don’t hunt either of those but only the travel routes to and from.
Well about 125-140 I'm estimating is in corn one year and beans the next. I also have about an acre foidplit in the middle of the hardwoods. There are 2 areas which are the cedar thickets and a small ridge that part of the branch runs through that I dont even go in. Even during rut last year when i hunted that farm all i saw were a few small bucks on the farm, running does. There is hardly ever any scrapes or too many rubs. About once a year I'll find a community scrape, usually after the season lol and a giant rub and some small rubs around it. I do have a stand in place where a large area of scrapes were last year and I've been waiting to hunt it, but other than that, I saw maybe one other scrape and 10-12 rubs. Its almost like I have all the small bucks around and when they hit 3.5 they leave my farm or I assume gets shot. Either way, I have pictures for a few years of the same bucks and then they all dissapear. And there ain't anyone around me that hunts that I know of or that ever has

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Re: Help with management

Postby fairchaser » Tue Nov 05, 2019 6:53 pm

Often these 3.5 year olds have larger home ranges than people think. Even a square mile would take them well off your property. What happens is they get shot chasing does a mile or two away and you might never hear about it. These bucks seldom get passed and 3.5 year olds are vulnerable to harvest. Also, once they reach 4.5, they are almost unkillable having PHD in human avoidance. They even know how to avoid cameras. Your size property would likely hold only one mature buck, two if your lucky. This one or two mature bucks may not even sport a great rack. I’ve seen a 5.5 yo 4 point rule the roost. I would try to inventory your bucks early and then track them through each season. Focus on the most mature buck and allow the high end up and comers walk.
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Re: Help with management

Postby gobblesandgrunts » Tue Nov 05, 2019 7:22 pm

fairchaser wrote:Often these 3.5 year olds have larger home ranges than people think. Even a square mile would take them well off your property. What happens is they get shot chasing does a mile or two away and you might never hear about it. These bucks seldom get passed and 3.5 year olds are vulnerable to harvest. Also, once they reach 4.5, they are almost unkillable having PHD in human avoidance. They even know how to avoid cameras. Your size property would likely hold only one mature buck, two if your lucky. This one or two mature bucks may not even sport a great rack. I’ve seen a 5.5 yo 4 point rule the roost. I would try to inventory your bucks early and then track them through each season. Focus on the most mature buck and allow the high end up and comers walk.
That's kinda my strategy, I wish we owned more land lol thank you for your input though I really appreciate it

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Re: Help with management

Postby fairchaser » Tue Nov 05, 2019 7:31 pm

You can make your place the local hangout but it takes lots of time and money. Even then, 300 acres will only hold so many mature bucks. If the neighbors don’t hunt that’s even better. If they will allow you to put cameras out, you could learn a lot more that might help you. Try to put your cameras 7-8 ft up angled down. This little difference can mean a lot sometimes when trying to get pics of mature bucks. Best of luck.
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Re: Help with management

Postby gobblesandgrunts » Tue Nov 05, 2019 10:06 pm

fairchaser wrote:You can make your place the local hangout but it takes lots of time and money. Even then, 300 acres will only hold so many mature bucks. If the neighbors don’t hunt that’s even better. If they will allow you to put cameras out, you could learn a lot more that might help you. Try to put your cameras 7-8 ft up angled down. This little difference can mean a lot sometimes when trying to get pics of mature bucks. Best of luck.
Yeah just not enough land. I just dont know where they would go, there's not very much cover around me at all

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Re: Help with management

Postby hitek7 » Thu Nov 07, 2019 3:39 pm

We hunt 340 acres, mixture of open and woods. There is one big area of hardwoods that we hunt early in the season but even then we never go to the center of it. The rest of the season we always hunt the wood edges never entering the blocks of timber. This was tough for me to start because that was not my normal hunting strategy. Foot traffic on our property is very minimal. Most of the time we drive golf cart within 100 yds of where we are hunting, sometimes closer. We always pay attention to the wind and setup accordingly. We see deer all season and still see mature bucks at the end of season. We do have decent neighbors for the most part.
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