Hunting Whitetails: PreSeason – Scouting Limited Resources (Episode 90 Transcript)

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GRANT: Monday morning, August 8th, and I'm extremely excited because we got three quarters of an inch of rain over the weekend. Now, that doesn't break the drought, but certainly a little bit of relief in a tough summer here at The Proving Grounds.

GRANT: I always enjoy the Fall Classic, 'cause it's a chance for me to visit one-on-one with other hunters in a beautiful setting, talking about the upcoming season and where they're hunting, or their hunting strategies, or what products their using; just a great, great exchange of information. Nothing gets me more pumped up about hunting season than those Fall Classics at Bass Pro – seeing, touching, feeling, all the hunting stuff to get me ready for this year.

GRANT: But we're going to eat supper in Uncle Buck's Auditorium, is that right?

GRANT: You can have that same opportunity to visit with guys like Jerry Martin and Allen Treadwell, and myself, and some other hunting pros that will be here during our field day August 19th through 21st, couple of openings left. Check that bar right below me for more information about attending our field day.

GRANT: You know, first thing I noticed when I walked out of my house this morning, looked across the hill was a beautiful stand of milo and with just a little bit of rain we had, including that three quarter inch over the weekend, that stuff looked like it jumped since I was gone in Texas; dark green and growing great. Looking forward to hunting over that this fall.

GRANT: Now, it's one of the first years we've actually planted milo here. Use it a lot in drier climates like western Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, but due to the drought conditions this year, and some areas where we had a failure of a corn crop, we replanted with milo. And our systems real simple – we used that organic fertilizer, or Antler Dirt, which is made out of composted poultry litter, that holds moisture really well. We plant with a no-till drill, so we're not discing or turning soil over, called conservation tillage, and plant a very drought resistant crop and even in a wicked drought, the fourth driest summer on record here, we got a great stand of milo coming, just using those conservation techniques.

GRANT: We showed you that same milo field a couple of weeks ago, and we hadn't had that rain. What a huge difference. I find it very interesting to follow food crops, or other habitat improvement projects through the different conditions so when I see next summer's forecast, or get a feel for the conditions, I know what to use and what not to use no matter where I'm working in the whitetails’ range and I hope you find that same information useful for your management project also.

GRANT: We showed you this pond just a few weeks ago, and it had lush, aquatic vegetation, about a foot tall all over it and it's all gone now. Nothing but thousands of tracks. They had wiped out that vegetation in just a couple weeks. There was only a little bit of water, that three quarter inch rain put a little water in there but it was stunning, the difference between the pond two weeks ago and the pond now. Just look at all the tracks. Well, I talk about patterning the limited resource, or finding out the most limiting factor in a deer's homerange and setting up to hunt that. This year, at The Proving Grounds, it may well be water. We want to pattern the most limited resource. Think about considering water here at The Proving Grounds this year versus a 40-acre soybean field where deer could come in at any angle, on any given day, depending on the wind and thermals, and coyotes or anything else. That pond is a perfect example of finding a limited resource, predicting that ahead of time, and being able to hunt it to have some really enjoyable hunts.

GRANT: And while you're finding or scouting for those limited resources, the opposite is also true. You can eliminate some potential stand locations. As Brad, Adam, and I are continuing to scout and kind of look around this Monday morning, we come across this little corn field on Boom Back- pretty small field – and I'm amazed on this old rocky ridgetop how great of corn it actually produced but every cob out here, every ear has been consumed. Some of it's deer sign, some of it’s raccoon signs, squirrels. We’re gonna have to mow that field down and plant winter wheat and another mix of cool season crop and that will be good, but it would just be another winter wheat field along that ridge. It was an isolated corn field that was gonna be a great limited resource to hunt over. You can rule out limited resources just as easy as you can rule them in and both are very important when you're scouting for stand locations this fall.

GRANT: You know, it's a little bit cooler breeze today, and all these leaves falling are getting me very excited for fall. I hope conditions are improving wherever you manage deer and you're really excited about enjoying Creation this fall. Thanks for watching GrowingDeer.tv.