advice for my first lease?

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advice for my first lease?

Postby frazor » Tue Mar 09, 2010 4:18 pm

SO me and some friends just acquired our first lease of 250 acres that we can do pretty much anything we want with. It's about a mile long with the bottom of the hollow being pastureland roughly 100 yards wide. Very end of said pasture is swamp land with MAJOR deer sign. Ridges are mature hardwoods with mostly rolling hills. Totally surrounded by hunting club on paper company pine trees that offer nothing more than wheat and oats on quarter acre green fields (and no I am not running wheats and oats down). Any ideas are appreciated. What to plant, rules for members, pitfalls to avoid?

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RE: advice for my first lease?

Postby SHKYBoonie » Wed Mar 10, 2010 8:01 pm

Frazor, where to start! I have been doing leases for several years and have several points about leasing with friends. First, what are your plans as far as wildlife management goes. Are you and your friends planning on practicing QDM or do you just want opportunities to harvest deer? If you decide to go the QDM route, you need to realize the realistic goals. Meaning, what is considered a large buck in that area? Don't set your goals on 180" bucks if 130" bucks are considered BIG in that area. How is the age structure right now on that land? Do the clubs around you practice any type of wildlife management? With QDM or just a quality hunt in mind, you need to find out what the doe to buck numbers are. Just to realize if you have a over populated doe problem. That way you can set goals on doe harvest without totally destroying the deer population on that farm. If some of you have QDM in mind and some just want to see and shoot deer, there will be friction within the group. I have been down that road. All of you need to agree on what you will be trying to accomplish on your lease.
As for rules, keep them simple. You need to get with all of the lease members and pick someone to be the "leader" of the group. This will simplify things in the long run. Set down with all of them and make out a list of rules that everyone can live with. These are just to keep each other from crossing lines and stepping on toes.
Rules will touch on subjects such as;
1) Guest
2) picking stands/stand locations
3) walking in and out of stand locations
4) use of ATV's
5) scheduling work days so everyone does their fair share
6) pooling money for seeds and fertilizer
7) what to shoot and what not to shoot
These are just some things to think about. There will be other things come up that will need to be dealt with along the way. I'm just telling you these things to help keep the peace between friends because on a tract of land the size of 250 acres, someone will eventually mess someone else's hunt up. If there are some rules to keep this from happening, it will happen much less.
As far as everything else, it's going to take you a few hunting seasons to really get a grip on how the deer use this land. You can put food plots in areas where there is good deer sign and they will get used, but this doesn't mean they will be easy to hunt. You need to know where the best location is for a stand and then tailor your food plots to fit in with that. Entrance and exit routes to the stand without getting busted. How the wind works in the area you plan on putting a plot. (That doesn't mean how the wind works during the Summer but rather how it will work during the time of year you will be hunting.) Are you wanting to do a year round food plot program or just something to hunt over in the Fall? Are you looking for nutrition, attraction or a little of both? What kind of native food sources are on the property now and where are they located? Where are the deer bedding in relations to these food sources? Are there any thickets on this property that could be used for sanctuaries?
As you can see there are alot of questions that need answers before any of your questions can be answered right. No two properties are just alike. What might work for your neighbor might not work for you. I suggest getting a few trail cameras out as soon as possible. This will give you a good starting point. Find where the deer are going to and coming from. Find how many different family groups are using this farm as home. This alone will help you answer many of the other questions.
Hunt as though your life depended on it, because one day it just might!

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RE: advice for my first lease?

Postby GTOHunter » Mon Mar 29, 2010 4:25 pm

We plant several different types of seeds in the Food Plots on our Lease,in the Fall (late August or early Sept) we plant brassicas,rape seed,turnips,sugar beets,clover and winter wheat.By Oct/Nov the brassicas,rape,turnips and sugar beets are full of large leafs that the Deer eat it down pretty good and into winter they are eating the turnip bulbs and sugar beets down to the roots then the winter wheat and clover comes up in the Spring time and makes our crop for any Turkey hunting.We also frost seeded more clover in a few of the other food plots to help with thicker growth of clover throughout the summer and into the Fall.
We all chip in on the seed and fertilizer for the Food Plots and the time and labor involved in prepping the ground and getting them planted.We also clean up and do not discard any trash where we hunt and No ATV's are allowed driving down or close to our stands....they are only allowed to retrive a downed Deer and then we have to leave the Hunting area so not to disturb anyone else's Hunting.We usually walk to our stands or drive a truck to the gate then walk in so we don't scare the Deer off the property.We also have a self-imposed Antler Restriction of 7-Point Bucks or better,the smaller Bucks are left alone to get bigger!We also sign a Waiver in case someone should get hurt,we are all responsible for any tree stand safety.

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