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Old 01-17-2019, 09:35 AM   #1
drogers6771
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OK so here's the deal. We've got the 55 acres that we live on. My property is about 50 acres of thicket and hardwood bottom with a 3 acre clearing where our house is and a 2 acre clearing which I hunt that is about 250 yards from the house separated by heavy woods. We have good density in our area and the ranches around us cultivate cotton, soy beans, corn and numerous other crops. My problem is this - a family member that has 60 acres that borders ours consistently has more mature bucks on camera. His property is basically 100% thicket with his plot in the center. I know the deer are entering his property from mine, mostly through a hardwood bottom that runs the length of my property. My hunting area backs up to this bottom, but the only time I see good bucks is before season and during heavy rut when they come looking for the does in my oat patch. I'll put up a pic of our property so you can see what I'm saying. Basically I'm in need of suggestions as to what approach I should take in order to make the deer more comfortable or to make my area more attractive. Food plots, stand location etc. I currently only plant in the fall.
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Old 01-17-2019, 09:50 AM   #2
BW96
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Lock on in the hardwoods. Multiple stand locations for different winds. Hand corn. Keep the pressure as light as possible. That's the key to any small property, especially if they already on your land.

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Old 01-17-2019, 09:51 AM   #3
BW96
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And use the road as access. But keep a "sanctuary" that you dont touch.

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Old 01-17-2019, 10:05 AM   #4
diamond10x
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I would hunt that bottom they travel, that’s gonna give you your best chance at the best buck. I would still have a stand over the oats for early and late season, but I would have a stand or 2 on or in the bottom for different winds.
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Old 01-17-2019, 12:22 PM   #5
AgHntr10
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If that's his property south of the county road with the big plot and multiple feeders he probably has more deer because he has a more established plot and feeding program.
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Old 01-17-2019, 12:44 PM   #6
Matt_C
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Go with the Buffalo System and you will have deer for years to come.
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Old 01-17-2019, 01:05 PM   #7
The Cajun
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Good looking property and glad you got some hard woods. My suggestion would be to spend a considerable amount of time right now and into february scouting your property hard, learning everything about it. Find the bedding on your property, food sources, and what not. I use onx maps to mark everything but before that I used the maps on the iphone to mark stuff. Take good notes when you do find beds and feeding areas including which direction trails might be going in and out. Also if you find rubs take note which direction the deer was potentially heading to make that rub. If you have some rain come by I'd walk the entire property line between you and the family member as well as 3470. Take notes on where deer are crossing, which direction the tracks are heading, how many tracks. Once you get all this together you should be able to connect a lot of the dots to know what your deer are doing. Than I'd set up lock ons like the others have said especially in the hardwoods but also in the thicket heading to other properties where you found their crossing. One protein feeder on your property would help with keeping deer around. Like others said try to access different parts of your property without disturbing the entire property. Once you learn the property though and know where the deer are bedding and where they are traveling, you'll have a good idea where to enter and exit your stand locations. Early and late season get you a camera running on trails through the thick stuff. The bucks will be in there.
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Old 01-17-2019, 01:12 PM   #8
TeamAmerica
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Feed the heck out of the does. the bucks will come. if your neighbor has stepped up his game, you may have to as well.

keep limited pressure on the trails and only hunt when the wind is right.
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Old 01-17-2019, 01:17 PM   #9
drogers6771
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Thanks for the input everyone

Quote:
Originally Posted by AgHntr10 View Post
If that's his property south of the county road with the big plot and multiple feeders he probably has more deer because he has a more established plot and feeding program.
The google maps image is at least 2 yrs old ( no house yet ) so it doesn't show my improved plot, but yes, his has been there longer. He only plants in the fall and doesn't even fill his feeders until August.

Bow stands in the bottoms are great for me, but I'm more interested in being able to put my kids on good deer, so I need to get them out into my clearing. Taking suggestions on a good crop for the Trinity river bottom area of Houston Co.
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Old 01-17-2019, 01:18 PM   #10
Lawhunter
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Originally Posted by BW96 View Post
Lock on in the hardwoods. Multiple stand locations for different winds. Hand corn. Keep the pressure as light as possible. That's the key to any small property, especially if they already on your land.

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Yep
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Old 01-17-2019, 02:13 PM   #11
BolilloLoco
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How much activity is going on around your house throughout the year? Kids running around on 4 wheelers, playing hide n go seek, etc......??

Does he have a house on his property?
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Old 01-17-2019, 08:28 PM   #12
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First thing I noticed is you can only hunt a north, northwest, west wind. All approach should be from south into blind and only on those winds

Southeast is our predominant wind.... and your SOL there without building blockage on trail (possible option). If you hunt in this wind you immediately tell bucks your there and it’s game over
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Old 01-17-2019, 08:46 PM   #13
drogers6771
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BolilloLoco View Post
How much activity is going on around your house throughout the year? Kids running around on 4 wheelers, playing hide n go seek, etc......??

Does he have a house on his property?
There is no house on his property, however, my house is closer to his oat patch than it is to my own. There is activity around the house, but there is activity everywhere here between ranching/oilfield/rec.

The best route seems to be to set up stands across the bottoms for different wind directions and to build a more established food plot. Thanks to all for the input
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Old 01-17-2019, 08:58 PM   #14
Low Fence
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Keep in mind stand wind direction means nothing if access wind direction compromises it. Hunt will be over before it starts if your scent is blowing through bedding area or your walking all over their travel route.
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Old 01-18-2019, 12:45 AM   #15
BolilloLoco
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drogers6771 View Post
There is no house on his property, however, my house is closer to his oat patch than it is to my own. There is activity around the house, but there is activity everywhere here between ranching/oilfield/rec.

The best route seems to be to set up stands across the bottoms for different wind directions and to build a more established food plot. Thanks to all for the input
Id say the lack of activity in his woods and length of time hes been established are the main factors for him having more/better deer. As stated previously cut them off before they get to his place. But use pop up ground blinds instead of a lock on for you and your kids. You might try to find some trees dropping acorns early season. Set up a ground blind downwind and your kids stand an excellent chance at a buck. Also you can try to feed more than him. Start dumping corn all over your roads in August and continue throughout season. Deer love corn. Set up on the corn once acorns are gone.
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Old 01-18-2019, 06:37 AM   #16
Radar
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drogers6771 View Post
OK so here's the deal. We've got the 55 acres that we live on. My property is about 50 acres of thicket and hardwood bottom with a 3 acre clearing where our house is and a 2 acre clearing which I hunt that is about 250 yards from the house separated by heavy woods. We have good density in our area and the ranches around us cultivate cotton, soy beans, corn and numerous other crops. My problem is this - a family member that has 60 acres that borders ours consistently has more mature bucks on camera. His property is basically 100% thicket with his plot in the center. I know the deer are entering his property from mine, mostly through a hardwood bottom that runs the length of my property. My hunting area backs up to this bottom, but the only time I see good bucks is before season and during heavy rut when they come looking for the does in my oat patch. I'll put up a pic of our property so you can see what I'm saying. Basically I'm in need of suggestions as to what approach I should take in order to make the deer more comfortable or to make my area more attractive. Food plots, stand location etc. I currently only plant in the fall.




I think you answered your own question. You need to plant a spring plot, some sort of soybeans or cowpeas. I would suggest making your plot bigger if possible or make another deeper in your property, so you would have two plots. After you plant your spring plot stay away from the area and let the deer find the plot. They will develop trails in and out of the plot or plots, then you can put your stand in between the two plots. Maybe add a feeder between the two plots for extra candy.

Do you have a water source near your plots?
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Old 01-18-2019, 07:55 AM   #17
drogers6771
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Quote:
I think you answered your own question. You need to plant a spring plot, some sort of soybeans or cowpeas. I would suggest making your plot bigger if possible or make another deeper in your property, so you would have two plots. After you plant your spring plot stay away from the area and let the deer find the plot. They will develop trails in and out of the plot or plots, then you can put your stand in between the two plots. Maybe add a feeder between the two plots for extra candy.

Do you have a water source near your plots?
Yeah I believe this is what I'm going to do. I'm going to try to make the main plot a full 2 acres and plant soybeans and cowpeas in the spring and maybe some chicory. I'm going to put in a smaller, more remote plot in the northeast corner. There is another creek that intersects the larger just to the east of my horseshoe shaped pond (yes there is a water source). I'm thinking of putting it between the two creeks and just leaving at alone all year. Will a 1/2 acre plot survive as long as there are multiple food sources in the area? Should I maybe add a protein feeder to that location? Will that help prevent them from over-browsing it?

I'm also going to move my feeder location to a road that will then be directly between the two plots

Last edited by drogers6771; 01-18-2019 at 08:00 AM.
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Old 01-18-2019, 08:25 AM   #18
Radar
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Yeah I believe this is what I'm going to do. I'm going to try to make the main plot a full 2 acres and plant soybeans and cowpeas in the spring and maybe some chicory. I'm going to put in a smaller, more remote plot in the northeast corner. There is another creek that intersects the larger just to the east of my horseshoe shaped pond (yes there is a water source). I'm thinking of putting it between the two creeks and just leaving at alone all year. Will a 1/2 acre plot survive as long as there are multiple food sources in the area? Should I maybe add a protein feeder to that location? Will that help prevent them from over-browsing it?

I'm also going to move my feeder location to a road that will then be directly between the two plots
1/2 acre wont last long when it gets hot and dry, deer will mow it down and it wont come back. I would still plant the 1/2 acre and make it the sanctuary plot(no hunt over it), instead of chickory in that small plot I would plant 35 pounds of cowpeas and 8 pounds Sunn Hemp. I planted Sunn Hemp last year and the deer love it, plus the peas will vine on it, which makes real thick vegetation.

I dont know if you got hogs, but be careful with feeders. I believe I might wait on a feeder till midsummer when your plots are drying up. Create a pen for the feeder to keep hogs out.

I hate hogs, they are hard on everything, plots, water source, feeders and other animals.
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Old 01-18-2019, 09:03 AM   #19
drogers6771
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Should I fence off the sanctuary plot until it has considerable growth or just plant fertilize and let it alone? Yes we definitely have a ton of hogs and I will be building a feeder pen this year
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Old 01-18-2019, 12:09 PM   #20
Radar
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Originally Posted by drogers6771 View Post
Should I fence off the sanctuary plot until it has considerable growth or just plant fertilize and let it alone? Yes we definitely have a ton of hogs and I will be building a feeder pen this year
I would just plant it and see. The hogs will root up your plots, so you will need to do as much hog control as possible
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Old 01-19-2019, 05:14 PM   #21
toledo
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drogers6771 View Post
the deer are entering his property from mine, mostly through a hardwood bottom that runs the length of my property. My hunting area backs up to this bottom, but the only time I see good bucks is before season and during heavy rut when they come looking for the does in my oat patch.
With plenty of heavy browse like you have, mature bucks don't care about your food plots. Hang a stand in the hardwood bottom. Only clear enough for 2-3 narrow 30-40 yard shooting lanes. 95% of deer hunters (especially in Texas) are guilty of hunting the nice pretty open spot where they can see. Then they wonder why all they see are does and young bucks. When it comes to mature bucks, go to them.

Last edited by toledo; 01-19-2019 at 05:35 PM.
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Old 01-19-2019, 05:24 PM   #22
toledo
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drogers6771 View Post
Bow stands in the bottoms are great for me, but I'm more interested in being able to put my kids on good deer, so I need to get them out into my clearing.
Sorry, I hadn't read this. Something like a krivoman on a pedestal and brushed.

If you insist on hunting the food plot, try leaving strips of brush/tall weeds in it to break up the open space and help them to feel more secure. Outside of the rut, open space is the enemy of mature bucks.
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Old 01-19-2019, 11:09 PM   #23
popup_menace
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We have a similar situation to yours. I think we are also going the route of plenty of food for the does
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Old 01-23-2019, 07:36 PM   #24
gonehuntin
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You live on your property, you need to feed them corn everyday. I drive around every evening I'm home spreading corn on the roads and food plots. I dump out at least 20lbs of corn each evening. Its nothing for me to have 30 plus does standing in the roads eating corn. I do still run feeders. You feed corn everyday and your deer will get used to you being there. My deer wont even run away when I drive by them in the Mule or Tractors. Your does will start hanging around, the bucks will be there also. I had a buck back during the rut hanging out with a tame deer we call Oreo, he is a 140 class 10 point buck and he would not leave Oreo while she was eating corn out of my hand, he was wary but he was not leaving his girl. Home place deer are stupid and free loaders, don't avoid going in the woods, walk the heck out of the woods. Get them used to your activities and they wont pay you any attention. Keep your does hanging around and all the bucks in the area will be coming in for a visit.
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Old 01-27-2019, 12:43 AM   #25
J.C.
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feed more than your neighbor!! my lease mates called me crazy when I told them I was feeding 12 seconds 2 times a day.... guess who had a zoo in the feed pin when I went and sat in the stand?.... Use game cameras as a roving tool. move them every week or so, just because. After a rain, go walk around and find fresh trails. Those pesky deer could literally be walking right behind you and you would never know it... good luck!!
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Old 02-01-2019, 01:43 PM   #26
venado
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Originally Posted by gonehuntin View Post
You live on your property, you need to feed them corn everyday. I drive around every evening I'm home spreading corn on the roads and food plots. I dump out at least 20lbs of corn each evening. Its nothing for me to have 30 plus does standing in the roads eating corn. I do still run feeders. You feed corn everyday and your deer will get used to you being there. My deer wont even run away when I drive by them in the Mule or Tractors. Your does will start hanging around, the bucks will be there also. I had a buck back during the rut hanging out with a tame deer we call Oreo, he is a 140 class 10 point buck and he would not leave Oreo while she was eating corn out of my hand, he was wary but he was not leaving his girl. Home place deer are stupid and free loaders, don't avoid going in the woods, walk the heck out of the woods. Get them used to your activities and they wont pay you any attention. Keep your does hanging around and all the bucks in the area will be coming in for a visit.
^^ this ^^
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