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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?
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"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
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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]
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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]
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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
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Registered: 09/27/12
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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]
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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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