If it’s feasible both financially and labor wise, feeding protein year around is absolutely the best time of year to feed deer protein pellets. Just keep those animals on a constant level nutrition and results will soon very obvious. As we all know, climate is never constant. Therefore, the brows and forwards, which are the mainstay of a white-tailed deer’s diet, are never constant.
When you get your deer herd established on a steady regimen of high-quality deer feed, you even out those highs and lows Mother Nature throws at us.
During spring and summer, March through September, this is antler growth and doe lactation time. Now is when you need to be feeding a 20% deer pellet such as a Purina AntlerMax 20%.
When September arrives and bucks shed the velvet off their antlers and fawns switch over to a diet other than the doe’s milk, now you can switch to a 60% pellet that is higher in fat, such as the Purina Rut & Conditioner. They no longer need the 20% protein, but we’ll use the extra fat to get them through the harder winter months and the rough times. Getting started on supplemental feed programs should be well thought out and executed. It helps you to have an aerial map, your protein feeder should be applied to the rate of one feeder for every 250 acres. These feeders should be evenly spaced across your property. The key points to look for are areas near water and cover.
If hogs or cattle are present, your feeder sites will have to be fenced off. To do this use 12-16 foot hog panels and 24 4 foot t-posts. Set a stake in a cleared area. Tie a rope with a finishing length of 27 foot 6 inches over the stake. Pull tight and walk in a circle spraying the ground, at the end of the rope, spray paint. Now, start setting posted 8 foot intervals around the painted circle. After posts are set, stand up and wire your panels together. Take one post out of the center of a panel so that you can use that for a gate. you will end up with a circular pen at approximately 60 foot across when you first start filling your feeders, don’t feel them completely up. It will take some time for deer to get used to the new feeders and the new feed. Mix pellet 50/50 with quality deer corn filling feature also scatter some corn on the ground around the new feeders. feeders should be checked and filled on a regular basis and should never be allowed to run completely out. Feeders should be maintained and feed kept fresh and dry. After the deer get accustomed the new feeders and feed, cut the corn out completely. farmers such as raccoons can be a problem and should be controlled.
Come early August, put a good game camera on your protein feeders. You will find it this time most of the activity will be at night and will be mostly bucks. You can use these pictures to compare the antler size of known bucks from year to year you will see a difference in both antler size and body condition. This information can be used in your management plans for orders to be the trophy or call bucks in the upcoming deer season.
Stop by Mumme’s Inc. today for all your deer feed and hunting needs. Stop by one of our locations to speak with our experts about deer nutrition and antler growth.