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Food Plot Management

Deer/Plot Management will be articles and information to help you better understand how to prepare and manage your land.

Monday, July 01, 2013
Chestnut Bounty: Does It Make Deer Wallow?

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As you may know, venturing out into the field can bring unexpected surprises. Recently on a trip to Alabama, I was reminded of this very truth.

The purpose of my trip was to visit with customers, dealers and other knowledgeable industry folks. While visiting with Bert Moore, Tecomate Retail Sales Manager, he took me to his hunting property located in the soil rich “Black Belt” portion of the state. We’d gone to check on his newly planted summer fields of Tecomate® Lablab Plus™ and Deer Pea Plus™ and were greeted by fresh seedlings coming out of the ground. The sprouts looked healthy and robust as they naturally faced their new leaves towards the sun. Bert’s excitement over the new growth was contagious to say the least, and we shared in his excitement over the coming fall hunt.

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Posted by Matt Haecker on 07/01 at 06:03 PM
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Monday, November 26, 2012
TPWD Management Programs

Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) has a wide range of programs to allow wildlife managers to increase the value of their property and the wildlife which call it home.  There are a few that you should be really interested in if you are looking to get that next “leg-up” on wildlife management.  Programs range from regulations concerning restricted harvest on whitetail bucks based on antler characteristics to the breeder deer program and accepting the broad range of ideals and desires of the public of the State of Texas.  While I can’t cover all of the programs that are out there, these few should really peak your interest.

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Posted by Cody Zabransky on 11/26 at 05:32 PM
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Monday, November 05, 2012
BUCK HARVEST RESTRAINT IN THE MIDWEST: 10 YEARS LATER

This story actually begins back in 1988.  That was the year I first became aware of the Quality Deer Management Association (QDMA).  I immediately joined, no doubt becoming one of the first members of the organization from the state of Iowa.

My membership in the QDMA was eye opening in many ways, but especially with respect to the phrase… “let him go so he can grow.”  Growing up in Iowa the concept of passing up shot opportunities at young bucks in order to manage for an older buck age structure was as foreign to us as the planet Jupiter was distant.  We had always tried to kill the first buck that came within range as soon as it stepped in range!  We had little idea that the vast majority of the bucks that we saw and harvested were only yearlings.  Or that if we simply restrained from harvesting these young bucks, they had the chance to grow into monsters.

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Posted by Dr. Mickey W. Hellickson on 11/05 at 08:00 AM
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Monday, October 15, 2012
Newell Wildlife Services — “Creating Healthy Huntable Habitat”

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Big bucks and long beards have always been a passion of Mark Newell, owner and operator of Newell Wildlife Services. Fueled by this passion, Mark pursued a degree in wildlife biology to further study the critters he loves to hunt. Mississippi State University, one of the premier schools in the country for its natural resource innovations, became his home for several years. However, some of the professionals and professors at MSU told him that a wildlife degree is not enough to be a good biologist. They emphasized diverse experience in the natural resource realm is necessary. For Mark, this experience came from on-the-job training. Between semesters, Mark worked for Tara Wildlife Management, a leading white-tailed deer outfitter near Vicksburg, MS. During that time, he also worked for Timbercraft, a forestry and land management company in DeKalb, MS. After graduating from MSU, all of the skills and knowledge he had compiled quickly landed him a job as the biologist and manager of Bayou Pierre Outfitters, near Jackson MS.

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Posted by Mark Newell on 10/15 at 02:17 PM
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Monday, September 24, 2012
How to Properly Obtain Survey Data

Data is one word that can make or break your management program.  It’s the Achilles’ heel of managing anything from warehouse inventory to your deer camp.  Just as in anything in life, if you put garbage in, you get garbage out.  Taking a little time to plan your method of attack on how to obtain proper, representative data can go a long way come deer season.  Because wildlife management isn’t an exact, set-in-stone science and practice, it takes a little finesse and experience to really produce top-notch results.  However, having great data on which to make recommendations should be your main concern in the population side of managing your deer camp.  When you call your Tecomate consultant, one of the things he will ask for is data.  Pre-season surveys, post-season surveys, harvest data, stand counts, helicopter counts, spotlight counts, and remote camera surveys are all of interest to your consulting biologist.

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Posted by Cody Zabransky on 09/24 at 08:05 AM
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Tuesday, September 04, 2012
What Does The Drought Mean For Your Fall Food Plots?

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It’s been extremely dry this summer here in the Midwest and over the last few weeks I’ve had several customers and friends ask about what this means for Fall Food Plots. The perception has been perhaps it may not even be worth planting anything this Fall.  This philosophy couldn’t be more wrong.

Let’s back up a bit and put things in perspective. When an area experiences such a drought it has a dramatic impact on the farmer’s grain crops. It puts the crops into shock and forces the grain to struggle. There still appears to be quality forage for the deer to eat throughout the summer to get them through, as these crops will establish to some degree. The impact is on the yield that the farmer will experience once they harvest. Fast Forward to the Fall and what we now have is farmers having to harvest these crops in August instead of October. This removes a primary, highly nutrition food source two months early. Many of your bucks are still in velvet and this nutritional drop off could impact some of that growth.

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Posted by Terry Sedivec on 09/04 at 12:27 PM
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Monday, August 27, 2012
Whitetails and Water Guzzlers, Part 2: One Year of Whitetail Hydration and Water Banking

It’s August as I type this article and it’s hot and dry across much of the whitetail’s range.  Although it’s not the only time we should be concerned with water availability on our properties it’s certainly the most obvious time.  Last August I sent out an e-newsletter entitled “Whitetails and Water Guzzlers: Gaining control of whitetail hydration.” 

I packed a lot of information into that article where I ultimately proposed the following question:
“Why do we feel it’s of utmost importance to spend so much time placing food plots in specific areas and in a very detailed shape/size but we never entertain strategically placing SURFACE WATER SOURCES (i.e. water guzzlers) to minimize stress, shrink distance traveled for hydration and ultimately maximize the health of our deer herds?”

I continued by stating, “The benefits of a plentiful water supply for whitetails are too numerous to detail in this e-newsletter.  You almost can’t go a day without someone telling you about the importance of drinking plenty of water throughout the day.  Therefore, I’m sure you won’t argue with me when I say: “Free water” (i.e. ponds, streams, rivers and lakes) availability may not be a limiting factor in whitetail survival; but it’s certainly a limiting factor in MAXIMIZING their health.  Strategically locating “free water” sources (guzzlers) is an underutilized strategy when micro-managing hunting properties.  In my opinion, “free water” availability is severely underrated as a limiting factor in white-tailed deer management.”

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Posted by Jason Snavely on 08/27 at 08:55 AM
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Monday, May 21, 2012
Tecomate Seed Planting Guide - Part II

Last month, we discussed site selection, soil types and determining your soil fertility when planting Tecomate seed products. In this article, we will cover fertility and inoculation, land preparation, weed control and planting information.

Fertility and Inoculation
Once you know your soil’s residual fertility and pH from the soil test, then better, more economical decisions can be made to amend the soil to the levels needed for optimum production.

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Posted by David Morris on 05/21 at 09:56 PM
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