Do you use and/or recommend the hing cutting technique?

By Grant Woods,

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← Grant's AnswersHabitat Management
We are seeing more and more about hing cutting, and know even hing cutting to
create buck beds. Do you think that really works? Cutting an area that will make
a buck bed under certain trees?

Thanks Jimmy

Oh have you been to Terry’s new duck hole yet?


The hing cutting technique seems to have originated in northern locations. In those areas deer readily eat maple twigs, etc., during the winter.  It also provides some cover in areas where the most of the forest have a closed canopy and very vegetation grows at ground level.

Most of the trees in Tennessee are oak and hickory.  Deer will eat twigs from these species if they are extremely hungry. However, they are not a preferred food or very nutritious.  I hope deer at my farm have access to better groceries than twigs.

Some folks use hing cutting to make cover. This technique can result in quality cover for a year or two. However, the limbs of felled trees will grow rapidly and shade out the ground.  This is especially true in the southern states.  Within a few years the hing cutting technique results in a mess but no cover from the ground to three feet high.  

I’d rather remove the trees in an area and encourage herbaceous vegetation that provides quality cover at ground level.

I haven’t toured Terry’s new property yet. i’m very confident it will be a gem after he manages it a while!

Enjoy creation,