Deer Beds

Your place to discuss ways the habitats for deer can be improved!
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RE: Deer Beds

Postby msbadger » Mon Oct 26, 2009 2:36 am

I find this interesting...there is a field ...directly infront of our house....the hedge row space between the field and house is 5oft....on the road side of field is a mature stand of pines....and the field is mowed

7 or so years ago Mr. B. and I are coming home from..someplace... at around 10pm....We turn into the driveway and our head lights swing over the field...He stops and asks you see that?...Yes sir!...the field had eyes dozens of them ...but it was also growing racks... not little racks ..We'er talking bedded deer with big was late Aug. and we'd never seen any thing like it....Got out the spotting scope scanned and then pulled out and headed up the check the upper field that's next to the one by us...more bedded buck....It was like a convention!...we went back home just amazed...and never said a word to any one until the next year...The point is buck and doe will bed in an open field near homes and open woods ...gullies...brush....pretty much where ever they fancy at the time....deer bed in the field every night...and they have made beds just 60 or so ft from the dogs kennel....but we never seen any thing like that again...

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RE: Deer Beds

Postby Deadon » Mon Oct 26, 2009 5:06 am

That's a great story, MS. I know these things happen from time to time. I have seen it myself. One day my Lab chased a bedded buck out of my back yard. Had never seen him before or since, but he was there that day. But I try to think about the things you can count on for the most part. Patterns, typical behavior, seasonal habitats, ect... I think those situations are the most helpful to focus one's
efforts. Like I said, I really don'tknow much about this topic, but I sure find it interesting and challenging.

Wolf River Hunter
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RE: Deer Beds

Postby Wolf River Hunter » Mon Oct 26, 2009 5:50 am

I've often thought about "building" blowdowns and deadfalls but I've never considered using finished woods like posts and pallets. I wonder if using a Y shaped piece of pole wood set into the ground upright and then laying other pieces of wood into the crotch in a fan shape might give a buck the concealment he is looking for. If you have a chainsaw and some scrub trees that need to go...

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RE: Deer Beds

Postby Deadon » Mon Oct 26, 2009 6:53 am

I would think that sure would work. I know the surrounding area needs to be thick with cover also. they also like easy, fast escape from the open side. I know on my property, the bucks love to bed under evergreens. the thicker the evergreen and the lower the bottom boughs are to the ground, the better they like it. On two occasions in the past, I have been standing next to an evergreen and never knew a buck was laying under the tree until he finally bolted out the other side. No point to my story, other than I have always remembered every aspect of those two beds and how they were used.

I have had people tell me that the roof part of the bed isn't necessary, but deer don't like to be rained on any more than humans, if it's a hard rain or sleet.

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RE: Deer Beds

Postby tumor96 » Mon Nov 16, 2009 8:14 pm

I don't think you can "build" deer beds either; best to let them choose. However, I have been thinking about taking a chainsaw around our 40 for a weekend and creating some cover habitat for them. I think by putting some blowdowns end to end and parallel to eachother (maybe some brush for a roof on one end) and by leaving them an escape route, you could create strategically placed resting/bedding areas. Any other thoughts?
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RE: Deer Beds

Postby buckhunter21 » Tue Nov 17, 2009 12:27 pm

One thing to do, is to make your property as tempting to a deer as you can.  Good to have some thick areas...Deer tend to love these obviously for cover and safety purposes.  If you have a chainsaw, you can do this!  I personally think a chainsaw is a deer/wildlife manager's best tool as far as making wooded habitat friendly to their species.  Opening up the canopy a little bit will create a thick area within a few years..and deer will love you for this!

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RE: Deer Beds

Postby MoDeer » Wed Nov 18, 2009 3:28 pm

   the Missouri dept. of conservation gives out food plot seed every spring ( buck wheat , corn , soy beans , clover & milo ) I had heard that milo was a great late season food source so we decided to plant milo , clover & alfalfa . The first year we planted the milo in the field nearest where we park and come deer season realized our mistake . we had a lot of deer using the milo as a bedding area and we had to find a new place to park . Now we plant the milo where we want the deer to bed . The deer start eating the tops off the milo first part of december and have them cleaned off by mid january . It is nice to be able to control some of their bedding habits and provide late season feed .

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RE: Deer Beds

Postby jsjandro » Tue Dec 01, 2009 4:00 pm

yes, you can create gender specific bedding, yes, tony lapratt has been doing this and other manips to aid in hunting deer, and yes he charges and no i never took a class from him.
that outta da way, if you dont trap - start. the fur market is a joke, but the lessons learned will last with you forever. trapping teaches you how animals react to changes in their home. manip of your land is a poor mans science experiment - one i never tire of. i only have 20 acres, but creating funnels and thick undergrowth but cutting in specific manners works wonders.  brush pilings and random slash will give cover that does hide in during estrous when suited by bucks, and also bucks use these to just bed in. the more piles the better.  make wind rows, j shapes, t shapes, they all change behavior and some get more use than others.  my land has seen tenfold increases in bedding since i figured this out, and my land is about a 20 yr old clear cut regrown to popple and white oak and white pine.  its thick as it was, with 5 slew/ponds when its wet out- and the addition of covie's helps a ton for the security bedding older bucks rely on. also, you can dictate where deer enter your land and how they move thru it when at calm. i have a white pine that was spared at last cutting and it is growing horizontally, next to a slew and it is heavily used by bucks of all ages.  i treat that tree like its own little sancuary in that ive watched bucks come to bed down in it midday and then towards evening get up and move into the food plots. kinda like a halfway hideout. 
if you're planting for bedding, plant hemlock or white cedar if it will work with your soils, and defend it vigorously against deer browsing till its old enough to fend for itself.   multifloura rose is an endless dnr debachale but it hides deer awesome, thats why sw wisconsin has sooo many deer.
i havent tried this, but if i had the spare change lying around i would. bring in a dozer and some fill and create trenches and burms in a spiral pattern so you have elavation changes, multiple wind directions covered and you could plant food in the lower spots. cover and bedding low and high and selective ins and outs for stand sites.  i thought of this hunting deer out of a lawn chair on top of a gravel pit pile of dirt 8 years ago. gravel pits house some serious deer because they usually have it all. 
only if we had antler point restrictions...:(

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RE: Deer Beds

Postby Wolf River Hunter » Sat Dec 05, 2009 5:42 am

js, did you create your sanctuary with a chainsaw or did you do any planting? We have had recent loggings on our property and the deer just love the new growth. I'm looking at improving other parts of our woods for the same effect. I'd like to open some areas up and then plant a more desirable cover in it's place. I think cedar might be the way to go.

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RE: Deer Beds

Postby swamp ghost » Sat Dec 05, 2009 2:41 pm

if you dont trap - start. the fur market is a joke, but the lessons learned will last with you forever. trapping teaches you how animals react to changes in their home. manip of your land is a poor mans science experiment - one i never tire of.

That's how Tony got the idea of habitat manipulation for deer, through his trapping experience. He told me that before he started trapping, that he paid a well known trapper (can't remember his name) to let him tag along on his traplines and show him the ropes. Tony has an impressive picture of the furs from his first year of trapping, that is how he bought the farm he resides on now, from trapping.

Tony is a wealth of knowledge, the guy thinks like a deer. The stuff he accomplishes with a chainsaw is impressive. jsjandro is right on the money, good stuff!


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