Colorado Elk Hunting
This week, we’re having a Throwback Thursday to an elk hunt from 5 years ago. For many hunters, elk hunting kicks off their hunting season. We were fortunate enough to have the opportunity for a week long back country public land elk hunt. The beauty and terrain are unmatched and to have that large of an animal inside of 50 yards is incredible. The hunt itself is a lot like the chess match of a turkey hunt.
Food Plot Planting Tips
The mid part of August offers up one of the few “down times” in our deer management. Trail cameras are up and our fall mix food plots won’t be planted for another couple weeks. So what is there to do? Plan and prepare for your food plot planting in the weeks ahead.
Improve Deer Hunting Habitat In The South
What corn are soybeans are to the midwest, pine trees are to the south. While the management practices between them are different, they are all aimed at maximizing production when it comes time to harvest. While corn and soybeans offer prime food sources for whitetail, pines themselves do not, but with proper management they can provide an abundance of beneficial plants and improve deer hunting habitat in the south.
This past week, we spent a day conducting a controlled burn of a stand of Long Leaf Pine to rid the understory of hardwood growth. The first step to properly burning a stand of pines is to get a burn permit. This will help ensure a proper plan is in place to successfully burn the intended habitat. Even though, mid July in Alabama typically comes with near triple digit heat, it is the best time to rid the understory of unwanted hardwoods. The extra heat will help kill trees such as Sweet Gum and Oak as well as thin the lower limbs on the Long Leaf. Well planned out strips of fire leave the most important part of the Long Leaf, the candle, unharmed and able to the tree continues growing. The benefits of this controlled burn will come to fruition during next spring with a flush of beneficial plants that are now free of competing young trees and brush that rob the good plants of sunlight and moisture. Deer and turkey will flourish in the new habitat and fresh food source!
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.