Speaking of small properties,,I have found no matter what you do,,,if your neighbors are idiots,,so much for your hunting land. I bought 40 acres in southern IA. A hunter's dream,,right? I planted food plots, apple, pear,persimmon, trees. Cut trails, enhanced bedding,,chinquapin oaks, the whole bit. Then my next door neighbor's place went up for sale. Purchased by a guy that is into racing. This year his kid gets a quad and friends. They rip their land up with loud engines. Some say the deer will get used to it, some say no. At least they are not riding every day. Once a week anyway. This kid is 16 or 17 so hopefully, girls and college, will take him to other interests, but I have learned my lesson. Unless you can buy a large piece of acreage, it all comes down to who your neighbors turn out to be. Next move for me will be a camper and nice truck to haul it. If I don't like the neighbors,,,I move.
You can make a hideout for deer, no matter how small the property. Deer will use the land if the conditions are in the deer's favor. I've seen deer bedded down along the highway , just to get away from hunter pressure. You can't go into backyard deer management thinking you're doing this for big bucks, it's not going to work that way, atleast here in my county anyway. You have to manage the land to be habitat for holding as many does as your parcel will allow. Everyland is different, and you need to find the missing links in habitat that need fixing to hold those deer. Once you can hold doe's the bucks will come sniffing around when the rut heats up, whether the bucks are mature or not depends on how the otherside of the fence is hunted. If your seroius about QDM on a small property, you need to make a QDM co-op with your niehbors, just so everyone is on the same page. No doubt your in for a battle, but I think you can make a difference.ORIGINAL: relentless_hunter_12
What about small property's? Why doesn't somebody write an article on how manage a small property with a small herd? On how to make it better and what to grow? Why doesnt anybody study this? What I'm trying to say is most deer hunters dont have huge land with thousands of acres, so what can someone with smaller land do to sustain a quality deer herd?
It can be done, I own 95 acres, and the only reason I purchased the property is for My two sons and I to have a place to hunt. I have owned the land for 4 years now, I have one food plot. The layout of the land is almost impossible for anything else.
The plot is half white clover which I maintain year round and the other half gets planted in September with winter wheat and turnips.
I maintain, what I call the no-fly zone, its about 40 acres that we do not hunt, the CORE area if you will. I usually patrol the perimeter of this area before season kicks off and then stay out.
We hunt the woods between the plot and the no-fly zone.
It has taken 4 years of very hard work, but it is paying off, every year more and more deer are coming to the plot, and this year so far, I have seen more bucks on my property than all other years combined.
Are they all staying there, I doubt it, but more than before and a lot more are coming over to my side of the fence for a meal.
I have also started an apple orchard, I have 3 trees that are 3 years old and 2 that were planted this spring, my goal is to clear enough area each spring to plant at least 2 or 3 more. It will be a long time before that venture pays off, but I'm not going anywhere.
You have to put in some hard work, but it will pay off.
Equipment is a big issue, I started with just an old tractor and a brush hog, over the years picked up a plow and a disc, a sead spreader and a soil compactor for my 4 wheeler.
The first year I borrowed a friends tractor and tiller, thats how I got started, and its just grown from there.
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