What percentage of land should be in food plots?

By Grant Woods,

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How many acers do you own? And how many food plots should you have on your land per acer? Also, how many food plots should you have per however many groups of deer?

There are many variables that determine how many acres of food plot there should be on any property.  If the hunting property is an area where corn and soybean crops are commonly grown then food plots, especially during the summer, are rarely necessary.  In these areas food plots during the hunting season can be useful to attract deer after the production crops have been harvested.  

In areas where timber or pasture are the primary land uses then more acres of food plots will be necessary to provide enough quality forage for all deer to express their full genetic potential. Ideally there will be enough acres of food plots that each deer has all the quality forage they wish to consume. 

An easy and accurate indicator that can be used to evaluate the quantity of food to the number of deer in an area is to notice if quality forage such as soybeans is being over-browsed.   If it is then either more acres of food plots should be established or the deer population should be reduced – or both actions at the same time.  

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