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#530220 - 12/16/07 12:34 PM how much (habitat management)
deerchaser007
10 Point


Registered: 12/17/02
Posts: 4282
Loc: Bradyville, TN USA

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In every management book you read it tells that a 2 to 5 percent of the total property size should be in high nutrition food plot plantings. Food plots are becoming the escape goat when it comes to management on a property. Food plots are only part of the equation. Habitat management is far more important. BUT,.. its never discussed in detail what percentage of the total property should be set forth for quality habitat for food and cover. SO,.. for you die hard guys,.. how much percentage of the total property do you set aside for nothing but habitat changes? In a typical hardwoods setting,.. whats the best method for creating it? Do you prefer large areas, or small blocks seperated up within the hardwoods? Can you go to far with this and hurt your hunting potential? Any other advice? such as getting preferred browse to grow in these areas such as greenbriar, honeysuckle,ragweed, blackberry and other important forbes for deer and wildlife. How to maintain the habitat after completion?

I've been here awhile and read alot of good stuff in sections about this ,. but never discussed in detail. Figured it would make a great change in topic over the food plot issue that comes up here all the time. As stated,. plots are important, but in TN i feel habitat changes should be the main target for a QDM plan. This could only help myself, other qdm guys that may pick something up, and the newcomers to the site that may have missed really good info from prior post.
Thanks,......
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#530236 - 12/16/07 12:56 PM Re: how much (habitat management) [Re: deerchaser007]
TAS
6 Point


Registered: 08/20/07
Posts: 563
Loc: Hickman County

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Jeremy,

I currently have 2% in food plots. I have many acres that have been select cut (leaving mast trees) to the point where I will have problems hunting it in a couple years. I have areas that have tree laps and are grown up to provide cover and food. What I have done and need to do much more of is bushog, disc, fertilize, and lime easy access portions of the cut areas. This will not only provide nutritious natural browse as you have mentioned but will also cut down on areas that will become unhuntable. It is a work in progress that sees no end. ;\)
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#530239 - 12/16/07 12:59 PM Re: how much (habitat management) [Re: TAS]
TAS
6 Point


Registered: 08/20/07
Posts: 563
Loc: Hickman County

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Oh yeah the area that I have select cut that is described above is probably 60-65%. I would like to hear more about sanctuary size, placement and percentage also.

Edited by TAS (12/16/07 01:01 PM)
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#530248 - 12/16/07 01:12 PM Re: how much (habitat management) [Re: TAS]
smstone22
16 Point


Registered: 01/11/04
Posts: 16954
Loc: Allardt, TN

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Mine is currently 15% mature hardwoods and 85% thick cutover with a few mature trees mixed in. After the dozer man is done it will be 15%mature hardwoods, 20% food plots, and 65%thick cutover.
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#530263 - 12/16/07 01:37 PM Re: how much (habitat management) [Re: TAS]
Radar
Non-Typical


Registered: 08/19/01
Posts: 31209
Loc: Kansas City, Mo.

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 Originally Posted By: TAS
Jeremy,

I currently have 2% in food plots. I have many acres that have been select cut (leaving mast trees) to the point where I will have problems hunting it in a couple years. I have areas that have tree laps and are grown up to provide cover and food. What I have done and need to do much more of is bushog, disc, fertilize, and lime easy access portions of the cut areas. This will not only provide nutritious natural browse as you have mentioned but will also cut down on areas that will become unhuntable. It is a work in progress that sees no end. ;\)


That's what the landowner has done with the select cutover that I hunt . He clears lanes and bushhogs ever couple of years to knock down the tall saplings and create openings and new browse for the deer .
This is a 100 acre cutover ,and if I were to create such a cutover from a deer management perspective instead of timber management perspective , I would make much smaller blocks and create edges between cover and open hardwoods along travel corridors to promote easier, natural shooting lanes in deer travel routes .
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#530449 - 12/16/07 05:18 PM Re: how much (habitat management) [Re: Radar]
deerchaser007
10 Point


Registered: 12/17/02
Posts: 4282
Loc: Bradyville, TN USA

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TAS,.. you posted a pic on serious deer talk of hardwoods habitat which provided no food source for wildlife. Can you post that here for this thread?
BSK,.. you also have a good pic,.. do you mind posting it also??

My place was select cut about 4 years now. BUT,. it was a very select cut. In areas,. i still have some good browse on the floor. BUT,.. others i am loosing fast and need to maintain them areas for forage production,.. but open up some larger areas for forage production with open cover. I'm gonna lay out a plan for attack on habitat this year. Cutting trees of no value to wildlife or value to me as a landowner. Open those areas up for forage.Cut the trees to sell for firewood. Open up some cedars and let it grow in and sell the cedars for fencepost. My farm is hillside ,.. maintaining by bushhog and tractor is not possible on the slopes. SO,. everything i do will be by hand and 4 wheeler. Gonna be a project i spread out for a couple of years probably. SO,.. i'm looking for some info i don't currently have.

Right now i have 3 percent in plots,.. and i'm done with that. I have no more area for plots that can be maintained. BUT,.. only have around 10 percent of my area for forage production for habitat. The rest ,.. well,.. there is nothing growing on the ground floor. Its all hardwoods. I thinking that is just not enough. The areas in plots and habitat set aside for forage is recieving heavy browse. SO,.. i'm thinking i need to add more on the habitat side.

Thanks Guys....
_________________________
QDMA member...Cannon co.
Guard your tongue in youth,.. and in age you may mature a thought that will be of service to your people!!
(Minquass)

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#530717 - 12/16/07 09:06 PM Re: how much (habitat management) [Re: deerchaser007]
birddoginQ
4 Point


Registered: 11/11/07
Posts: 171
Loc: Knox, TN

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deerchaser, I would also recomend "girdling" trees. It is a great timber stand improvement tool, as well as a way to acheive the small openings you are wanting. Can be done a variety of ways most succesful that i know of would be using a chain saw and cuting a shallow ring ( or two) all the way around the tree that you have selected to remove. This will effectively cut off the flow of water to the top of the tree, as well as from the top to the roots by severing the cambial layer.....killing the tree. These standing dead snags provide excellent habitat for small and non-game animals while opening the canopy to allow light to the ground.

Also less work on the removal end..

just another management tool.
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#530923 - 12/17/07 06:46 AM Re: how much (habitat management) [Re: birddoginQ]
BSK
Jerkasourous of the non-typical kind
Non-Typical


Registered: 03/11/99
Posts: 65979
Loc: Nashville, TN

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deerchaser007,

What you are talking about is a Timber Stand Improvement (TSI) cut--removing trees with no wildlife or monetary value.

You can use a chainsaw, girdling and/or hack-and-squirt.
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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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#530926 - 12/17/07 06:47 AM Re: how much (habitat management) [Re: BSK]
BSK
Jerkasourous of the non-typical kind
Non-Typical


Registered: 03/11/99
Posts: 65979
Loc: Nashville, TN

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Here are the pictures you were asking about:



_________________________
"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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#531244 - 12/17/07 01:07 PM Re: how much (habitat management) [Re: BSK]
kholmes
4 Point


Registered: 06/05/07
Posts: 280
Loc: Nashville

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Good Thread. I agree that there is not enough info dedicated to habitat. My wife is getting me "Forest Plants of the Southeast and their wildlife uses" for Xmas. Hopefully it will shed some light on this issue for me.
With the price of fertilizer and diesel this coming planting season, I will be scaling back my food plots and concentrating on creating cover and native browse.
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