Every spring starts the same. Big plans for habitat improvements and food plot preparations, only to be quickly “Interrupted” by the sickness that has infected us all: turkey hunting!
This year was no different than the others for Casey. Mowing a corn plot and burning native warm season grasses in preparation for the coming year took a back seat as turkey season started in Illinois. It didn’t take long to put the first bird on the ground during the 1st season. From there, it was off to Iowa for a yearly tradition of a hunt with Tom. The hunt ended with a great 2 year old longbeard taken in a clover food plot.
Now that another successful turkey hunting season has come and gone, it time to get back to business and get the farms in prime shape for the fall!
Frost Seeding Food Plots
Planting food plots doesn’t always require large machinery or lots of equipment. By using the weather to your advantage, getting seed in the ground can be as simple as broadcasting it on top of the soil. Timing is key, but the end result can be a beautiful lush green food plot.
As winter gives way to spring, there is almost a daily freezing and thawing of the top layer of soil. Tom took advantage of this by broadcasting Pennington Durana and Patriot clover on logging roads at the family farm. The natural freezing and thawing of the ground along with a good rain or two will push the tiny clover seed just into the soil to allow germination. This form of planting can not only be successful with clover, but many other small seeded forages. Rather it’s for improving a stand of clover or simply establishing a a quick food source such as wheat or oats to get your deer herd through the last few before spring green up, frost seeding is an effective, easy way to get a food plot planted as long as your timing is right.
In our mini-series of videos on trapping tips, we give you an array of tricks that we use to improve our trapping success. Trapping has a definite art and it’s not something that can be picked up on overnight. Years of experimenting and learning go into consistently being successful on the trapline. These tip videos can help not only the novice, but experienced as well.
Modifying and Setting Snares
Snares, where legal, give trappers a great tool to use in certain situations. With a little modification, you can improve a stock snare and increase your odds of success.
In this video, we provide a little how-to on modifying and setting snares for predator trapping. By simply making a curl, or pre-loading more of a circular curve into your snare, you’ll cover more of the crossing and quicken the snare. It’s a simple, yet effective modification that anyone can do. Setting a snare is an art. At first, it might take you some time, but through practice and trial/error you’ll have it down. Using wire to form an anchor on a fence crossing and another 8-10 inch piece as a support wire will not only help a trapper firmly secure his snare, but also provide easy adjustment to provide perfect snare placement.
Predator Trapping Tip
We get asked all the time on when is it time to remake a set. It’s not the length of days it’s been there, it’s weather conditions that are our determining factor. A big rain can form a crust over the set basically keeping it from firing. Animals have a keen sense of smell and will still be able to smell the bait and lure you’ve used, but the dirt over the set is the concern. So if you’ve put a trap in and have been unsuccessful for the first couple days, don’t be concerned with resetting it unless there has been a big rain.