118 Acres

Discuss Quality Deer Management issues here!
Thumper_abn
 
Posts: 3
Joined: Tue Dec 14, 2010 7:05 pm

118 Acres

Postby Thumper_abn » Tue Dec 14, 2010 9:09 pm

New member looking for advise.
I've been sharing a lease for 3 years with one guy . I've taken deer each year. This year I got the biggest I've ever gotten on opening day(7pt with a 14 5/8 inside spread), then a nice 6 pt on Thanksgiving day. Well my partner says he's not hunting there anymore(got something closer to home). Now I'm on my own out there.
I want to get larger bucks out there.
It's mostly pasture with maybe 20-30 cows. There are a few descent sized stands of hardwoods, several large ravines, and 2 large streams(impassable by ATV after a heavy rain), 2 ponds. The property is an irregular shaped 118 acres. There is a no fence hunting preserve less than 2 miles away across a major road. Best thing is it only cost me a ham to the owners son if I get one.
This year I took a pop up and more or less tossed it out where I had seen a flash of deer the last day of muzzleloader season. I was pissed at the location once the sun came up. Didn't think it was any good, no visability and couldn't hear because of the stream, but the wind was right.
I was rattling and lightly grunting a bit. At 7:40 I was watching the turkey's I missed during the spring season. I just happen to glance to the right a bit and there he was 18 yrds away.
Then did the same basic thing on Thanksgiving morning.
I have hundreds of pics of 6-8 does eating from a feeder on another part of the property maybe 400 yds away but never seen them while hunting. And never got pics of anything with horns this year.
Anyway what can I do to build a better herd and grow larger deer. The cows run through most anything I've put out for the deer and the fella working the cows isnt really into helping me with the deer herd. So far I take the first one to put meat in the freezer then I get picky and only look at the more mature deer.
I'm willing to try most anything to improve things.

User avatar
Cut N Run
 
Posts: 540
Joined: Mon Jun 15, 2009 10:21 am

RE: 118 Acres

Postby Cut N Run » Wed Dec 15, 2010 9:07 am

Welcome to the forum Thumper_abn. I see you're from central N.C. too. What County? To get bigger bucks, start passing up on the 6 pointers unless they are scrubs. Shoot does for meat to help gain a better buck/ doe ratio. Take some time in the off season and learn where the deer travel when the woods are bare like now. Figure out some good stand locations depending on seasonal winds and cut shooting lanes accordingly. 118 acres is not a huge piece of land, but properly managed it can produce some really good deer, especially if the harvest on the property down the road is being controlled.

Jim
Luck Counts, good or bad

Thumper_abn
 
Posts: 3
Joined: Tue Dec 14, 2010 7:05 pm

RE: 118 Acres

Postby Thumper_abn » Wed Dec 15, 2010 6:08 pm

I'm just outside Charlotte in Stanly County. Where are you?
I knew better than shooting the 6pt but it's the first year I've been able to get 2 in the same season and I couldn't resist. I was actually expecting does this year. Since I hadn't seen any horns on my 2 trail cameras since June. I still need to harvest a few. I found out recently my old hunting partner was passing on does all year last year. Said he would just watch them waiting on a buck.
Is there anything i can plant this spring that will help their nutrition that the cows won't lay to waste? So far the cows wear out anything I've put out. Corn, apples, pears, salt licks, mineral blocks. I haven't tried anything else since they tear through everything so far.
Thanks for the advise
Paul

User avatar
Cut N Run
 
Posts: 540
Joined: Mon Jun 15, 2009 10:21 am

RE: 118 Acres

Postby Cut N Run » Thu Dec 16, 2010 12:03 pm

Paul, I live in Orange County near Hillsborough and hunt Durham, Orange, and Granville Counties.

Planting clover would be a good thing if you can plant in a place the cows can't get to it.



Jim
Luck Counts, good or bad

User avatar
JPH
 
Posts: 3419
Joined: Thu Apr 24, 2008 10:28 am

RE: 118 Acres

Postby JPH » Thu Dec 16, 2010 12:28 pm

ORIGINAL: Thumper_abn

...what can I do to build a better herd and grow larger deer. The cows run through most anything I've put out for the deer and the fella working the cows isnt really into helping me with the deer herd...


I've hammered out a hardscrabble QDM program on a small property for 8 years now and I can tell you that "growing large deer" on your place is really not possible without a high fence. A deer is going to spend a lot of time on other properties. Unless you have a solid agreement with the neighbors and a way to ward off poachers, you cannot even begin to look at the deer herd as something you can regulate. Now this is not to say that you cannot help to create conditions in which a deer has better odds of growing to maturity. You can, but it is a slow process in which you have to accept your limitations.

The key is to make your property as attractive as possible. Having an arrangement of food, water and cover is a start. If you're missing any of those things I would work to put them in place. Diversity is also great. Multiple food sources and multiple areas of escape/bedding cover are a good thing if you can build them. These elements may encourage deer to spend more of their time on your place, thus decreasing the chance that they will walk in front of hunters with different standards. Another thing you may find helpful is to establish sanctuary areas and adopt a low impact style of hunting. Given that you lease an active farm, that may not be easy but you can try. Finally, I suggest you pay very close attention to your doe herd and hunt it accordingly. Given what you indicated in your first post, it seems as if you may need to thin your doe herd in order to lower the overall stress level. Once you have brought it down a bit, I would skim it carefully and try to keep one or two mature does on the place. I believe that matriarchal does have a stabilizing effect on the herd and will consistently attract mature bucks.

Let me know if any of that makes sense.   

Thumper_abn
 
Posts: 3
Joined: Tue Dec 14, 2010 7:05 pm

RE: 118 Acres

Postby Thumper_abn » Thu Dec 16, 2010 8:51 pm

It makes sense.
The preserve up the road seems to be regulating things there. I almost never see hunters there. I've hunted weekend and week days, mornings and evernings alike and have only seen one guy and I've only seen him once. I do see a small herd of deer most every afternoon, usually around 10-15 does with a buck once in a while.
The property right across the road has 2 guys hunting it. I know one of them.
I'm sure there is hunting on the other properties around the neighborhood but it only seems to be toward the early part of the season.

I think I'll get with the farmer to see if I can fence off a small area for some clover. I have an automatic feeder with corn in it now but I was feeding them something called "all stock" It's basiclly goat feed with molasses, around 16% protein. They didn't love it but they did eat it and it was cheaper than the deer feed from Tractor Supply. I mixed it with just enough corn to keep it from sticking together in the feeder chute.

As it is i do spend a good bit of time out there during the off season. My daughter and I hunt sheds and ride a 4 wheeler around scouting, and turkey hunt a little. But from bow season on I'm only out there if I'm hunting. The farmer only goes maybe once a week and sometimes not that often. He feed the cows on the other side of the property.
I think i have most everything I need. There are hardwoods with a HUGE acorn crop, 2 ponds, a large creek as well as a lesser creek. There are around 15-20 acres along the road that is in cotton each year. It has a few persimmon trees also. It have rolling hills, steep ravines, and a swamp along one property line.

I know there are deer out there year round with limited pressure. I just need a better plan for nutrition for the next few years. I can limit myself to the more mature bucks and to thin out the does a bit. I know there isn't much I can do about the neighbors. At this point I can keep "just hunting" or work to make my little slice of heaven more productive.

By the way the lease agreement is I give over a ham "if" I shoot anything. That's it. I couldn't believe it when the owner told me. It's also only 5 miles from home.

Thanks again guys. I'm still listening if there is any more wisdom out there.

User avatar
shaman
 
Posts: 2441
Joined: Sat Jun 21, 2008 12:38 am

RE: 118 Acres

Postby shaman » Thu Dec 16, 2010 8:55 pm

I agree with JPH.


Concentrate on making the land attractive to doe and convince as many as possible to use the land frequently.  Use them in turn as bait to bring in bucks during the rut-- that's probably the best way to maximize your possibilities.

118 acres is, in my estimation too small of a plot to do much else.   I have 200 acres, and I can tell you that the bucks are impossible to hold onto.  They're roaming over the better part of the county.  The doe are much easier to manage-- they're your ticket to success.
Genesis 9:2-4 Ministries of SW Bracken County, KY
Confessions of a Cervid Serial Killer
Image

GTOHunter
 
Posts: 541
Joined: Mon Apr 28, 2008 4:05 pm

RE: 118 Acres

Postby GTOHunter » Sun Jan 09, 2011 1:16 pm

Well Deer like thick cover and tall grass,if the Cattle are keeping everything open and bare it can be very dificult to keep Deer on 118 Acres?Making it more desirable will help,the mineral licks are a good idea and food plots will help even more.If the Owner would let You fence off a decent size area for a food plot it would help a lot...and thinning out the Doe's will help balance the overall Deer Herd.Passing on the younger Bucks will improve your chances for getting a Bigger Wall-hanger in the future too! [;)]


Return to QDM • Quality Deer Management

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 5 guests