|Soil moisture is No. 1
May 13 at 9:00 am
Plants are simple organisms with basic needs to fuel a laundry list of chemical reactions that sustain life. Sunlight, air and nutrient availability rank high in the cycle of life, and few plants will survive very long when any of these components is lacking. Yet the simple compound of two hydrogen molecules bonded to one oxygen molecule, also known as water, is crucial for sustaining life. Food plots need adequate soil moisture to get off to a good start.
|Proof’s in the pudding
April 11 at 9:00 am
The next few months rank high for producing quality and healthy deer for the fall season and for the future of deer on your property. There is so much going on in the spring and summer for bucks that the actions taken by landowners will have a huge impact on the herd for the rest of the year.
|Plant a banana (lily)
March 11 at 9:00 am
It’s never too early to think about ways to attract waterfowl for the 2013 fall season. In fact, March is the optimum time to establish a cost-effective waterfowl forage called the banana water lily — Nymphaea mexicana — especially on those permanently flooded **sites where traditional upland planting is not possible. This plant’s benefits to both waterfowl and landowner outweigh all other forage options as a low-cost, low-maintenance and a highly productive food source for waterfowl.
|Pour the feed to ’em
February 11 at 9:00 am
Being well below the Mason-Dixon Line, the Carolinas are definitely in the South, but these southern paradises usually experience a winter with freezing temperatures and icy precipitation. The winter affects nature’s kitchen, eliminating many of the staple food sources deer and other wildlife require for nourishment.
|Aging is key to managing
January 14 at 9:00 am
The end of another deer season is upon us, but unfinished business remains on the “to-do list” for groups and individuals aspiring towards quality deer management. Harvest records from the season will not be complete until the jawbones from deer killed have been studied and aged effectively.
If you spent the season filling your freezer and sending a trophy or two to the taxidermist, it’s time to devote time to determine the age of deer killed.
|Give plots ‘vitamin’ shots
December 17, 2012 at 9:00 am
As the final month of the year arrives, rutting activity in the deer herd is dwindling, and a chill looms in the background. Winter foods become important to deer and other wildlife. With the rut winding down and cold weather invigorating appetites, deer will seek out dependable food sources, including those cool-season food plots planted back in late September.
|Don’t take the ‘bait’
November 12, 2012 at 9:00 am
As the millions of ducks breeze into the Carolinas from the duck factory, feeding will be the first task for these winged arrivals. Landowners with fields of grain submerged under a shallow layer of water will fare well during both segments of the season. But waterfowlers must follow strict guidelines to ensure that crops are handled correctly to prevent an unfriendly visit from the local game warden.
|Do your duck homework
October 15, 2012 at 9:00 am
Wing shooters warmed their barrels last month on droves of mourning doves, and maybe a few hunters took-on Florida-style duck hunting in 80-degree weather for the early arriving blue-winged and green-winged teal. With the regular waterfowl seasons arriving shortly, waterfowl junkies better prepare for another bumper season.
|Mix fall food-plot seeds
September 10, 2012 at 10:00 am
Planting season seems to be a hot topic almost every month these days — well, every few months, anyway. When folks have a passion for growing healthy herds of deer and producing attractive forage to lure in flocks of doves, ducks, bobwhite quail and wild turkey, planting season will come along quite often.
|Plan cool-season planting
August 06, 2012 at 10:00 am
August is a vital month for food-plot junkies hoping for an attractive nourishment center for deer season. But cruising through fields and woods or cultivating potential plots during the sweltering August heat is not a preferred activity in the South. Ninety-degree days and 100-percent humidity keeps most folks near or inundated in air conditioning. Luckily, the cool-season planting period is still a month away, but hunters can prepare their food-plot plan for the upcoming season this month. Planting season is just around the corner!
|Eliminate the ‘sun hogs’
July 01, 2012 at 8:54 am
If deer, ducks and turkeys could talk, they would quickly thank diligent land managers for preparing tasty buffets — until the hunting season, anyway.
Rich food plots and flooded impoundments full of tasty grains require significant time investments, but the benefits are well worth the effort. Food plots will be commonly established with an end game in mind, but in the real world, issues arise that create a few speed bumps along the way. Land managers should always strive to improve plot productivity where needed.
|Protect sunflowers now
June 01, 2012 at 7:00 am
The 95-degree days of June can easily pull dove fanatics off course, but Labor Day is less than 100 days away. There is no time to slack off now. Dove fields should be kept clean to ensure vigorous growth, with little to no competition from weedy invaders.
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