Tips To Improve Your Deer Hunting Property (#189) @GrowingDeer.tv
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Tips To Improve Your Deer Hunting Property (#189) @GrowingDeer.tv


July 1st, and the Growing Deer team went to
Perryville, Missouri to work on a wildlife and habitat project. That plant is very healthy. But back of the Proving Grounds, we had some
bad news on two fronts. GrowingDeer.tv is brought to you by Bass Pro
Shops. Also by Reconyx, Trophy Rock, Muddy Outdoors, Non-Typical Wildlife Solutions,
Eagle Seed, Nikon, Winchester, Redneck Hunting Blinds, Dead Down Wind, Record Rack, Antler
Dirt, LaCrosse Footwear, ScentMaster, BloodSport Arrows and Prime Bows by G5. Just a few minutes away from Mr. Robinson’s
property. He decided to return to the property after Brad created a plan several years ago;
want to see how they’ve done in implementing the plan and what we can do to tweak it to
improve the deer and the habitat. We’ve got some — some pretty windy roads. Mr. Robinson’s been dedicated to managing
his farm for improved hunting and better quality deer and turkey. Ideally, I’d like to be a five, seven- foot
plane just sweeping over the place. During the past few years, Mr. Robinson and
his crew have created some great bedding areas by harvesting the timber and allowing the
native vegetation to re-colonize those areas as well as establishing several high quality
food plots. So why we want to burn in August and September
is, all the carbohydrates, all the energy in a tree is up here right now. It hasn’t
started transporting it back down to the root system. And I would consider this a huge success
if we killed, let’s say, 70 to 75 percent of the saplings out here, you won’t ever get
them all, you just never get it hot enough to get them all. Creating bedding areas by harvesting timber
is not a once and done operation. That’s especially true in hardwood areas because those hardwood
root systems are very resilient and they will send up hardwood sprouts that grow rapidly
and shade out the high quality native vegetation within just a couple years. That’s what we’re
seeing at Mr. Robinson’s place, so we prescribed a growing season fire, which will stimulate
more grasses and forbs and not back the amount of hardwood sprouts that are colonizing that
area. A growing season fire is safe from late July
through late September, every three to five years will do a wonderful job of maintaining
that area and grasses and forbs, making it a feeding and bedding area. Beautiful. Like last year, when it was a real
drought. Cause it, right now, there’s so much water and little stump holes and everything
else and… Another improvement Mr. Robinson and his crew
has made, is establishing the wildlife sized ponds throughout the property. These ponds
are well designed, just large enough, where they won’t go dry in a severe drought, but
small enough deer are very comfortable at drinking at them during daylight hours. Put in a lot of his energy on food, which
is really important when you have a farm that’s primarily covered in timber. Just like here at the Proving Grounds, the
clover is very strong during the early growing season till about July when it gets pretty
dry and the clover starts going in resistance, or dormant, mode to survive through the dry
months and kick in strong in the fall. It was obvious deer had browsed on the clover
heavily before we had visited, but we’re switching more over to the soybeans at this time of
year. Some of the soybean plots at Mr. Robinson’s
property had been protected by electric fence; this simply allows the beans to get large
enough, to handle the browse pressure that might occur when it’s the most attractive
food source in a large wooded area. That plant is very healthy. Those nodules
are telling me it’s doing what it needs to do. You know, to every breed that’s 78% nitrogen.
It’s taking nitrogen out of the air and what we call fixing it, making it available for
the plant to use and those nodules, you can see a bunch more forming out here on the end,
or what does that. That sort of bacteria are colonized. Given that his beans are almost waist tall
on me, I suggested that they take down all or a portion of the fence, allow deer to have
access to that great source of protein, while antlers are developing and those does are
producing milk for their fawns. Once Eagle Seed Forage soybeans reach that
state, and they’re getting plenty of soil moisture, they tend to grow faster than the
deer can browse them down. (Inaudible) And here, too, (inaudible). Some
of those survived and we had two more (inaudible) or whatever. (Inaudible). Mr. Robinson, I’m a big fan of labeling these
camera sites because you’re going through nighttime pictures from different properties
like we do or whatever. We can’t know where it is all the time, so having this number
here is really plus, but you’ve taken a step further. What have you done here? Along with the, the mentioning of our sign
is two foot square, and the hash marks are 12 inch centers to give you a frame of reference
for identifying the rack size of a buck when you’re evaluating pictures. You’re not guessing ear length or something,
you’ve got a known scale, got a batch of group of bucks in here in August doing a camera
survey, and you know exactly what six inches is compared to the deer. So you had a six inch marker, all the way
around the sign, you can compare the beam length, or time length, or ear size and get
a very accurate estimate of antler size. We will certainly include that and other tips
we learn from Mr. Robinson as we work with future land owners throughout the White Tails
Range. Back at the Proving Grounds, we’re always
learning and refining our techniques. You may recall a few weeks ago, we treated
some smaller clover food plots with a backpack sprayer. A few of the weeds were not impacted by the
cocktail of herbicides we used on that treatment. As many species of weeds mature, they become
less susceptible to the effects of herbicide. In those cases, mowing or doing what we do
– going into the plot and individually treating, if you will, mowing down those weeds with
a weed eater – can save millions of weed seeds being produced and a lot of headaches in the
future. It is certainly not as efficient to go in
with the weed eater and treat individual weeds as it is to walk through, or drive an ATV
through rapidly and spray the whole plot, but the savings in the future of not having
millions of that similar weed in your plot, is well worth the energy. Treating weeds can almost always be accomplished
by one system or another. But I’ve yet to figure out a way to make it rain when I need
it. Throughout much of the White Tails Range,
they’re very wet this year. Crops aren’t being planted, there’s water standing in the fields.
But that’s not the case here at the Proving Grounds, cause you can tell by this pond,
it’s been a long time since we’ve had a good rain here at the Missouri Proving Grounds. Without adequate water, deer are certainly
stressed, but the plants are stressed and nutrient deprived and deer, or turkey, can’t
express their full potential. This growing season started with ample soil
moisture, our crops got up strong, and deer and other forms of wildlife benefited from
those crops for a good month and a half. During that time, most fawns are born, mothers are
making that critical first milk, and antlers are taking shape. If we don’t have relief
from this drought soon, it won’t surprise me to see a little bit shorter tine length
than average here at the Proving Grounds. Managers can always moderate the impacts of
a drought by keeping that deer density low enough so they’re not right at the edge at
the maximum food the property can produce and by using good techniques, like we shared
last week about planting beans early and letting that crown get established. I hope you’re experiencing good growing conditions
at your Proving Grounds, but whatever they are, take some time to get outside and enjoy
Creation and most importantly, listen to the Creator. Thanks for watching GrowingDeer.TV. And I am videoing myself good. You got to stop recording (inaudible). Adam, sing for us. Heel, toe, dosey doe, coming on baby let’s
go, boot scoot.

17 Comments

  • Adam Craig Outdoors

    always great videos on deer management and property management. i love the idea of the signs post with the marks to be able to judge and monitor the growth of deer. plus the camera site marked on each photo.

    Thanks Dr. Woods and crew

  • deerslayer2446

    First to post! Great video guys.Thanks for all the videos, it is helping me with reaching my property goals for deer and turkey. Was wondering if you could do a in depth video on hinge cutting for deer habitat?

  • GrowingDeer.tv

    Hopefully the weather will cooperate soon for you to get some projects completed before the season opens!

  • GrowingDeer.tv

    Thanks for commenting! I'm not a huge fan of hinge cutting. Hinge cutting does provide some cover the first year or two – but the limbs quickly grow to tall to provide cover for deer, turkey, etc. Sapling provide very low food quality. Once the cut trees grow out of reach of deer it’s a mess to clean up! I’d rather spend that energy making a small food plot, etc.

  • fishnkid1923

    Grant what would you recomend planting in a small plot that is inside the woods with not a whole lot of sunlight.. the plot im thinking about planting has sunlight for maybe half the day but not direct sunlight..I think it would be enough to plant something there but would do you think? Might have to cut a few smaller trees down but i dont want to cut any of the bigger oak trees down that are making acorns anyway

  • Billy Burn VanDusen

    Why would you want to spray a bunch of poison where your deer are going to be feeding (or anywhere for matter). I feed my venison to my family and wouldn't want those "chemical cocktails" making there way to my kids. Just sayin…

  • GrowingDeer.tv

    I agree – we consume a dozen+ does each year – and I want healthy venison for my family! Most of the herbicides we use have the same toxicity of toothpaste. Modern herbicides are much different than the compounds of the past. Without herbicides, I’d have nothing but weed patches – and without herbicides farmers wouldn’t produce enough food to feed the 6+ billion folks on the planet.

  • GrowingDeer.tv

    I find hidey holes (small plots off the beaten trail) great locations to kill mature bucks! 1,200 square feet is about 3/100 of an acre. Hence, it needs to be a browse tolerant forage, or time the planting/hunting closely so deer don’t consume all the forage before there are good conditions to hunt! White clover is fairly shade and browse tolerant. I suggest making sure all weed competition is removed (using herbicide or tillage) and heavily fertilize the area.

  • GrowingDeer.tv

    Fertilizer will accomplish two goals including making the forage more palatable than other food sources and allowing the forage to continue growing even if there are lots of deer eating at the plot. Another great tool is a Hot Zone electric fence (you may have seen them used on GrowingDeer.tv). These solar powered fences keep deer out until you wish to hunt, then you can create a gap in the fence that funnels deer into a good shooting position.

  • Jacob Winters

    I live in the northeast corner of Mississippi, and we don't get big deer. A good size buck could possibly weigh 115 pounds, what type of food plots or simple but valuable resources could I put out to help keep the deer coming in and getting them to a bigger size?

  • Marshall Loth

    I have 20 acres with a 5 acre corn field next to a road with the rest of land being woods. What would you recommend to help me see more deer? I live in Minnesota.

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