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#3383175 - 10/01/13 04:39 PM Genetics, nutrition, age
woodsman87
8 Point


Registered: 09/27/12
Posts: 1326
Loc: south TN

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What do yall think, or what is the facts about age, genetics and nutrition? My question is, what is the most important of these, if any, or are they all the same. I know you have to have the right property in the right place in the country to have consistent "booners"
I have always thought age first, then genetics, then nutrition. I may be wrong, but it seems like most places in the southeast have plenty of deer food year round, because it doesn't get enough snow in winter,, and we usually get enough rain in summer.
What you Think?

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#3383218 - 10/01/13 05:08 PM Re: Genetics, nutrition, age [Re: woodsman87]
smstone22
16 Point


Registered: 01/11/04
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Loc: Allardt, TN

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Priority is age, then nutrition. I cant change genetics in a free herd so I cant worry about that. Even in poor soils, bucks that all of us would be pleased with can be grown with age and nutrition.
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#3383221 - 10/01/13 05:11 PM Re: Genetics, nutrition, age [Re: smstone22]
Planking
6 Point


Registered: 09/18/13
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 Originally Posted By: smstone22
Priority is age, then nutrition. I cant change genetics in a free herd so I cant worry about that. Even in poor soils, bucks that all of us would be pleased with can be grown with age and nutrition.
Well said

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#3383250 - 10/01/13 05:29 PM Re: Genetics, nutrition, age [Re: Planking]
BSK
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Other than the fact that all three of those issues are so deeply intertwined that they can't really be separated, here's another big monkey-wrench in the equation: no one knows how the "genetics" of antlers work. Is shape genetic? Is size (beam and tine length and/or spread) genetic? is the number of typical points genetic? No one knows the answer to any of these questions (no one can point to the actual genetic code that carries these characteristics, and that would be required to "understand" how the genetics of antlers work). So how can you answer how important "genetics" is in antlers when no one knows how the genetics of antlers work?

What if many of the things we believe are genetic are actually environmental? Some truly mind-bending research suggest the health of a button buck's mother even before she becomes pregnant with him can strongly influence that buck's antler growth for his entire lifetime, despite his "genetics," nutrition, or age.
_________________________
"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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#3383269 - 10/01/13 05:49 PM Re: Genetics, nutrition, age [Re: BSK]
BSK
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I could go into a very lengthy discussion of the influence of age, genetics (if there is such a thing), and nutrition on antler size, but readers would have to have a clear understanding of the terms "average," range," and "bell-curve distribution" to fully understand the points I would be trying to make.
_________________________
"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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#3383351 - 10/01/13 07:06 PM Re: Genetics, nutrition, age [Re: BSK]
Boll Weevil
8 Point


Registered: 06/26/11
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smstone speaks the truth. Give em feed, give em time...I don't care if he's a 6 point. If he's 5, 6, 7 yrs old he's generally something to behold and you'll be proud to have put him on the ground (of course that's the hard part). \:\)
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#3384040 - 10/02/13 07:49 AM Re: Genetics, nutrition, age [Re: Boll Weevil]
woodsman87
8 Point


Registered: 09/27/12
Posts: 1326
Loc: south TN

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Is it possible to help out your deer heard if you only have about 150 acres to work with? We have about 6-7 acres of food plot. If I established some about 4 acres of it as a pernnial clover field, would it help any?
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#3384067 - 10/02/13 08:13 AM Re: Genetics, nutrition, age [Re: woodsman87]
muddyboots
12 Point


Registered: 11/06/02
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Loc: savannah, tn., usa

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Age
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Let em go and let em grow!
There is a difference in a turkey killer and a turkey hunter!

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#3384116 - 10/02/13 08:45 AM Re: Genetics, nutrition, age [Re: muddyboots]
tellico4x4
6 Point


Registered: 11/29/04
Posts: 940
Loc: Killen, AL

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 Originally Posted By: muddyboots
Age
x2 + good food

Here's the result of 11 years of management. When we acquired the property in 2002, we were lucky to see a 2-1/2 yr old 6 point. Don't just look at antlers, but look at the body size of some of these mature bucks.

http://www.bullethuntingclub.com/gallery-camera-13.html

Tip - when page opens, click the arrows in bottom right of picture box to go to full screen.



Edited by tellico4x4 (10/02/13 08:47 AM)
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#3384266 - 10/02/13 10:07 AM Re: Genetics, nutrition, age [Re: woodsman87]
Boll Weevil
8 Point


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 Originally Posted By: woodsman87
Is it possible to help out your deer heard if you only have about 150 acres to work with?

Absolutely. Folks think it requires tons of ground to see improvement but there's much you can do to create a place deer want to be. On 150 acres if you provided good chow (whether planted or native forage), a place where they weren't continually harrassed, focused on low-impact hunting...I bet you'd see improvement in just a couple of years.

At the same time, gotta calibrate your expectations too and ask what's reasonable? We all have limitations: land, time, neighbors, money, et al.

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#3384500 - 10/02/13 12:29 PM Re: Genetics, nutrition, age [Re: woodsman87]
BSK
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 Originally Posted By: woodsman87
Is it possible to help out your deer heard if you only have about 150 acres to work with? We have about 6-7 acres of food plot. If I established some about 4 acres of it as a pernnial clover field, would it help any?


Anything helps, if the area is generally low-quality habitat. However, much will depend on the surrounding land. Is it mature timber? Mixed timber and pasture? Some agriculture? A lot agriculture?

Individual deer probably spend only a small percentage of their time (and feeding volume) on 150 acres. Going from 6 to 10 acres of food plots is a help, but remember a single deer eats over 2,000 lbs of food per year. How much food does an acre of food plot grow? Unless it is production-style agriculture, not as much as most hunters believe.

Just to clarify, I'm certainly NOT saying "don't do it." What I am saying is "do it, but don't expect to see major improvements in antler size per age-class just due to the extra food plot acreage." It generally takes access to large-scale agriculture before big improvements in antler growth are seen. That's just the reality of the situation.

Another thing to consider: what percentage of the bucks that use your property during hunting season (harvestable bucks) actually live on your property during the antler growing season? In many situations, especially with small properties, the answer can be shockingly low. If the harvestable bucks don't live on your property during antler-growing season, how can your food plots influence antler growth?
_________________________
"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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#3385850 - 10/03/13 08:24 AM Re: Genetics, nutrition, age [Re: BSK]
woodsman87
8 Point


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My land is not very condusive for growing big whitetails. Mainly pasture and hayfields, mature hardwoods, cedar thickets. Not really any agriculture within 7 miles in any direction. Too hilly and rocky I would think.
I will probably try to establish clover fields, but I don't expect to actually see a difference in antlers. I just like providing for wildlife of all species, and I know turkeys and deer love clover.

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#3385941 - 10/03/13 09:08 AM Re: Genetics, nutrition, age [Re: woodsman87]
BSK
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And don't forget the "attraction" factor of food plots woodsman87. If little agriculture or other food plots exist in the general area, food plots can draw considerable feeding activity to your property. In fact, in my opinion, that is the greatest value of food plots--simply as an attractant.
_________________________
"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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#3386092 - 10/03/13 10:44 AM Re: Genetics, nutrition, age [Re: woodsman87]
Boll Weevil
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 Originally Posted By: woodsman87
Too hilly and rocky I would think.

If you haven't already, check out what Grant Woods has been able to accomplish on his place in the ozark mountains...doesn't get much hillier and rockier than that. Admittedly, he's put tons of resources into it in time, money, equipment, and good'ol sweat equity but he's shown it can be done.

Growing Deer TV. Check it out...love his work, advice, and opinion.

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#3386213 - 10/03/13 12:11 PM Re: Genetics, nutrition, age [Re: Boll Weevil]
BSK
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 Originally Posted By: Boll Weevil
 Originally Posted By: woodsman87
Too hilly and rocky I would think.

If you haven't already, check out what Grant Woods has been able to accomplish on his place in the ozark mountains...doesn't get much hillier and rockier than that. Admittedly, he's put tons of resources into it in time, money, equipment, and good'ol sweat equity but he's shown it can be done.

Growing Deer TV. Check it out...love his work, advice, and opinion.


Grant's work shows what is possible, but never underestimate the "money" factor. If he were honest about the total monetary resources (equipment, etc.) invested in his plots, I bet it would shock some people.

On the other hand, Grant isn't exaggerating when he talks about how bad his place was when he first bought it. I thought my terrain, soils, and deer herd were bad, but his place was 2 to 3 times worse when he bought it.
_________________________
"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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#3386217 - 10/03/13 12:13 PM Re: Genetics, nutrition, age [Re: BSK]
woodsman87
8 Point


Registered: 09/27/12
Posts: 1326
Loc: south TN

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I understand that money and time can do what he does. But I ain't got the time or money to do that. If I did, I would probably just get some land that would be easier to grow stuff on.
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#3386219 - 10/03/13 12:15 PM Re: Genetics, nutrition, age [Re: woodsman87]
BSK
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 Originally Posted By: woodsman87
I understand that money and time can do what he does. But I ain't got the time or money to do that. If I did, I would probably just get some land that would be easier to grow stuff on.


Grant was able to buy such a big chunk of land because, at the time, it was virtually worthless. It could not be farmed, and it had no marketable timber.
_________________________
"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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