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#339133 - 08/13/07 11:03 AM Re: Feeding Deer [Re: Greg .]
BSK
Jerkasourous of the non-typical kind
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Registered: 03/11/99
Posts: 65620
Loc: Nashville, TN

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As I mentioned previously, I hate discussing this topic.

People are going to do whatever they want to do, regardless of "the facts." Even when they understand that smoking absolutely shortens your life and gives you a 50/50 chance of developing smoking related cancer, they will still smoke.

It doesn't matter how clear it is that obesity shortens life-spans and is one of the leading causes of destructive maladies like heart disease and diabetes, people are still going to over-eat and get fat.

No matter how often you point out that feeding wildlife has been proven to cause devastating disease outbreaks that destroy local economies (see the cattle industry of MI due to the spread of bovine tuberculosis by artificial feeding of deer), and cause inumerable other wildlife and habitat related damage, they are still going to feed deer.

People are always going to take what they believe to be the easy route to accomplish what they want, even if the "easy route" is dangerous and when much safer yet more long-term alternatives exist. We want want we want, and we want it now, future be damned.
_________________________
"Know where you stand, and stand there" --Jesuit Father Daniel Berrigan

"There is no reasoning someone out of a position he has not reasoned himself into." --Clive James

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#339282 - 08/13/07 01:11 PM Re: Feeding Deer [Re: ]
brier rabbit
4 Point


Registered: 07/22/07
Posts: 130
Loc: sumner tn

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89montero

what kind protein pellets are you feeding. i have tried a few but the deer did not seem to like it, just rotted.

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#339299 - 08/13/07 01:28 PM Re: Feeding Deer [Re: BSK]
Greg .
aPoStROpHe PolIcE
16 Point


Registered: 08/24/04
Posts: 11122
Loc: NC Piedmonts

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Well said, Bryan.

I was going to type something along the lines of you can lead a horse to water, but can't make him drink. Thanks for all the good info.

But that's the way folks are. I reckon it stems from some sort of survival mechanism -- expend the least amount of energy and get things NOW, for there may not be a tomorrow. Maybe that's why some folks' finances are in such a mess, too. ;\)
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#339324 - 08/13/07 01:51 PM Re: Feeding Deer [Re: Greg .]
BSK
Jerkasourous of the non-typical kind
Non-Typical


Registered: 03/11/99
Posts: 65620
Loc: Nashville, TN

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Absolutely Greg. Our ability to always find the quickest route to the desired result/goal is what has made us such a successful species. As far as we know, we are the only animal capable of reasoning through a problem before we act. All other animals learn by trial and error.
_________________________
"Know where you stand, and stand there" --Jesuit Father Daniel Berrigan

"There is no reasoning someone out of a position he has not reasoned himself into." --Clive James

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#343222 - 08/15/07 09:28 AM Re: Feeding Deer [Re: wcsd462]
BSK
Jerkasourous of the non-typical kind
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Registered: 03/11/99
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 Originally Posted By: wcsd462
BSK
I do agree that natural habitat is an important factor in managing, holding and killing big deer, but if you dont have the right natural habitat I think it should be up to the land owner not the goverment to do what he thinks will work best for his land,whether it is re planting tree's that were logged or planting native brows or even puttng out feeder's. I only have about six oak tree's on my property due to logging,{This was done pryor to me buying it}. In the past couple of years the oaks I do have have not produced so the deer dont hang around becouse the neighbors do have oak's, so in order to compete I feed, I put in food plots,minerals stations I even did some burning to try to promote the groth of natural vegetation. If their was anything else to do I would do that to. The name of the game for me is to hold as many deer on my property as I can to keep the trigger happy neighbors from killing every thing that moves. Age is the first key in killing big deer, second is genetics,{cast do anything about that} third is nutrition, that is where I can help out and at the same time I may see more deer while I am hunting hell I may even help grow the buck of my lifetime.


wcsd462,

I somewhat agree with you. Landowners and hunters should do all they can to improve the necessary resources for wildlife on their properties. However, that should be done in the safest manner possible. Now even improving the habitat has its risks, potentially producing over-population problems that carry their own unique risks. But the artificial feeding of wildlife out of trough or feeders is pushing the risk too far. The Southeast Wildlife Disease Study Group lists artificial feeding as one of the two greatest threats to wildlife in America today. Artificial feeding has been PROVEN to produce devistating disease outbreaks. Studies done in NC found that half of all bait/feeder sites tested showed levels of aflatoxin contamination high enough to cause significant poisoning of wildlife. The Southeast Wildlife Disease Study Group is finding new and unknown diseases appearing in areas where feeding/baiting is legal, but those diseases are not being seen where feeding/baiting is illegal.

The artificial feeding of deer from troughs/feeders is simply a very, very bad idea biologically. Now I'm not saying that improving the habitat doesn't have it's risks too, as it does. Increased deer densities that often result from improved habitat does increase the risk of spreading contagious diseases, as there are more deer inhabitating the same area. But the close contact that occurs at feeders and bait sites is unlike what occurs in natural feeding situations, hence GREATLY increases the risk of disease transmission.
_________________________
"Know where you stand, and stand there" --Jesuit Father Daniel Berrigan

"There is no reasoning someone out of a position he has not reasoned himself into." --Clive James

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#343625 - 08/15/07 01:11 PM Re: Feeding Deer [Re: BSK]
Wes Parrish
16 Point


Registered: 06/12/02
Posts: 19386
Loc: Knoxville-Dover-Union City, TN

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BSK, truer words never spoken.

 Originally Posted By: BSK
As I mentioned previously, I hate discussing this topic.

People are going to do whatever they want to do, regardless of "the facts." Even when they understand that smoking absolutely shortens your life and gives you a 50/50 chance of developing smoking related cancer, they will still smoke.

No matter how often you point out that feeding wildlife has been proven to cause devastating disease outbreaks that destroy local economies (see the cattle industry of MI due to the spread of bovine tuberculosis by artificial feeding of deer), and cause inumerable other wildlife and habitat related damage, they are still going to feed deer.

People are always going to take what they believe to be the easy route to accomplish what they want, even if the "easy route" is dangerous and when much safer yet more long-term alternatives exist. We want want we want, and we want it now, future be damned.


I have previously stayed out of this, and on one hand I wish I had time to address some of this in more detail. But on the other hand, "What's the point"? If you guys are unwilling to listen to experts in the field like BSK and BigGameGuy, then you surely could care less what I know about this subject.

But I will add a small two cents.

I have attended some Southeast Deer Study Group meetings where the facts on supplemental feeding were simply shocking to me. And they were the facts, not what people "want" to believe.

Knowing what I know, I would simply be scared to death now to do any supplemental feeding of corn in Tennessee. It is simply not worth the risks. (I'm talking from a feeder, not growing it in a field, as I see little risk in growing it and leaving it for wildlife. There is also little risk in feeding corn in Texas, but different story in Tennessee.)

Although I didn't realize what was happening at the time, I am now convinced I wiped out the turkey population in a large area of Stewart County by legally feeding some corn during the summer months. My best estimate is I killed about 80 adult turkeys, and no telling how many young poults. All it takes is one kernel of bad corn to kill a full-grown old gobbler. What I lost in turkeys far negated any additional deer pics I might have obtained by feeding corn. And I have no way of knowing how many young deer were killed by that same corn --- young deer are the most susceptible ---- and there will be absolutely no evidence to show they died ---- no bones, no nothing.

But aside from killing turkeys and young deer by "bad" corn, the next most relavant damage many hunters should fear is stunting antler growth ---- feeding corn in the summer will stunt antler growth. This doesn't mean the otherwise healthy deer will not grow nice antlers ---- it just means they would have been yet larger had you not been feeding them corn. Deer that are being supplementally fed corn during the antler-growing period will consequently eat less other stuff that's more important for growing larger antlers ---- protein --- the protein found in naturally growing native forbs (broadleaf weeds like ragweed) and clovers.

Think about it.
If you fill up on candy right before dinner, will you be inclined to eat less of the healthy food available for dinner?
That's what happens when you supplementally feed deer corn during the summer: They eat more carbs, and less protein.

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#343640 - 08/15/07 01:19 PM Re: Feeding Deer [Re: wcsd462]
Winchester
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Registered: 12/05/03
Posts: 27785
Loc: TN

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 Quote:
---- and there will be absolutely no evidence to show they died ---- no bones, no nothing.
Wes, I agree feeding is not a good idea, but would you explain your above statement. I have yet to ever see something die and then vanish in to thin air! Does the deer fairy suck these aflotoxin deer up at death and take care of the carcass??? LOL

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#343705 - 08/15/07 01:39 PM Re: Feeding Deer [Re: Wes Parrish]
wcsd462
4 Point


Registered: 11/17/06
Posts: 336
Loc: Wilson Co.

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BSK/Wes
Ok... Since I dont know everything, and I like to keep an open mind on things tell me, what causes these problems? Are these diseases caused by what Wes called "bad corn" or are they something that deer just get and then spread when the infected animal comes in contact with another deer. What is bad corn or bad feed? I do know It doesnt need to lay on the groung and rot.
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#343739 - 08/15/07 01:51 PM Re: Feeding Deer [Re: Winchester]
Greg .
aPoStROpHe PolIcE
16 Point


Registered: 08/24/04
Posts: 11122
Loc: NC Piedmonts

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Winchester,

The point Wes is making is to head off the "if I don't find deer carcasses, they're not dying" argument. We KNOW deer die out in the woods all year long, but how many deer skeletons do we find? The answer is hardly any.

I'm still amazed at how many of those horses refuse to drink.
_________________________
Abandon all rational and unbiased thought. Just blame Boooosh.
lIbeRaLs LIE ... lazy lIbeRaLs repeat LIES.
: http://obamaclock.org/

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#345354 - 08/16/07 07:26 AM Re: Feeding Deer [Re: Winchester]
BSK
Jerkasourous of the non-typical kind
Non-Typical


Registered: 03/11/99
Posts: 65620
Loc: Nashville, TN

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 Originally Posted By: Winchester
 Quote:
---- and there will be absolutely no evidence to show they died ---- no bones, no nothing.
Wes, I agree feeding is not a good idea, but would you explain your above statement. I have yet to ever see something die and then vanish in to thin air! Does the deer fairy suck these aflotoxin deer up at death and take care of the carcass??? LOL


Winchester,

When it comes to young deer, especially fawns, they can die in extraordinary numbers, yet their bodies are so small and the skeletons so under-developed that they rot away and are consumed so completely be scavengers that rarely will anyone find a dead fawn carcass.

Think about this: fawn mortality studies across the Southeast will come up with a wide range of numbers, but the average between all these studies is around 50%. That means that half of all fawns born die before hunting season every year. In all your years of hunting/scouting how many dead fawns have you found? At 30 deer per square mile, 7-10 fawns die per square mile every summer every year. If you have been hunting for 20 years, that's almost 200 dead fawns per square mile over that time-frame, yet how many of those have you found dead? I work in the woods 3-4 days per week all year round and have done so for almost 10 years, but I can count on one hand the number of dead fawns I've found.

We had a project in westcentral GA where the deer were extremely over-populated and the herd was very unhealthy. Fawn survival was extremely low. Fetal counts from harvested does showed the average doe late in preganancy was carrying on average 1.3 fetuses. That means, for every 10 does, 13 fawns were being born. Yet fawn recruitment was only 10% (by hunting season there was only 1 surviving fawn per every 10 does). 12 of every 13 fawns born each year would die before October, yet you could walk around this park-like property (the browse-line was so severe you could see 200 yards through the woods in summertime) and never find a dead fawn. That is until we did some controlled burning. Once all the leaf litter had been burned away, they ground was absolutely covered in little bits and pieces of fawn bones.

In West Virgian a few years ago, a couple of locations experienced an HD die-off that killed 30% of the entire deer herd (and those parts of West Virginia have fairly high deer densities). Yet not a single person called to report a dead deer. Not a single person noticed this major die-off other than some field biologists.

Deer can die in amazing numbers and no one will notice. Scavengers are amazingly effecient at cleaning up Nature's excess.
_________________________
"Know where you stand, and stand there" --Jesuit Father Daniel Berrigan

"There is no reasoning someone out of a position he has not reasoned himself into." --Clive James

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