Why You Don’t Need Food Plots For Deer

Do you need a food plot program if you want to be a herd influencer and experience a great hunt? The answer may surprise you! Because IF you are going to find consistent quality hunting experiences on your private parcel, IF you want to be able to create a quality deer herd and IF you want to do your best…then you cannot miss out on this critical food plot advice.

*Food plots are critical to your whitetail success. All 12 of our NEW WHS Seed Blends are available for purchase right now! Check out our new seed blend website!

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*Do you want to learn how to build and transform your food plot program for this Fall? Check out my advanced whitetail strategy classes:

https://www.whitetailhabitatsolutions.com/classes/hills-thermals-whitetail-hunting-web-class

*Jeff and Friends Talk Deer Podcast:


I want to talk about why you don't need Food plots and I might come a little odd Sound a little odd coming from me Someone who owns a food plot company but I a seed company anyways but I wanted to Talk about that and and I wanted to Offer some perspective on that first Thing though you see my eye it's getting A little bit better many of you Commented and they hope I'm okay Um I'll just talk about on this one but I get I get a shot once a month I went For a couple years where I wasn't Managing my diabetes Well Diabetes Type 1 late adult onset juvenile diabetes a Lot of people say well change this do That you don't understand I I need to Live on long-acting short acting insulin Every day of my life that's just the way It is unfortunately it's it just happens To a small percentage of people and they Saw this type one uh Sam since before He's been two so very familiar with it But for a couple years they didn't Manage it well so I have a little Neuropathy in my feet I've been able to Stop all these bad progressions then I Had some swelling in my eyes caused by That too and so I have to get a shot Once a month it's been doing great I've Had six shots sometimes a doctor I don't Know if they do a bad job this is the First time I had this particular doctor They'll hit something that causes major

Bruising the eye actually bleeds after The shot it sounds terrible but Everything's numb other than a little Pressure and uh and then it and then it Hurts for you know two or three days you Can feel it when they really hit it hard But I'll tell you the antiseptic they Put in there it's like soap that's worse So they've been rinsing me extra and That helps but bruise takes about a Couple weeks to go away when it's really Bad so that's kind of what's happening So just to let you know everything's Good it's been getting a lot better it's Something they can reverse not the Neuropathy in my feet but um and then my Diabetes has been doing really well for Over two years now so I've been really Good on that A1C is actually this next Day once he should be almost below what The doctor wants if that makes sense I've been doing really well with it so We'll get back to the video but that's Where explains the eye if you notice That sometimes a lot of people do number One if you have a pass-through property What does that mean why don't people That have 10 acres 20 acres let's say Down in Western Illinois they're on a River somewhere and there's big giant Properties north and south of them Rivers flown North and South And they literally have a little bit of Cover and they're between and sandwiched

Between giant properties that are well Managed I know someone like that in Michigan that's done really well Throughout the years doing that He's just in between giant Parcels that Manage your properties well he manages His hunt well watch the weather sits When he needs to and and shoots a Monster bucks but you could find Properties like that in every state many Many many properties well in that case You're not trying to hold deer you're Not trying to draw those deer from Neighboring properties you're just Watching what's passing through so yeah Water hole might be great that defines a Spot right in front of your stand mock Scrapes but food plots aren't really Necessary in that case maybe you have 10 Acres in the middle of giant AG land in Ohio and so the deer aren't really Focusing on your land because you don't Have enough to offer them in terms of Food or cover but covers at a premium in That area So you can see there's art there are These Parcels around out there that you Don't need food plots on or very small Like you use a food plot Trail in a case Like that on a small personal AG Lane Just to direct traffic in front of a Stand you know something like that but You don't need five acres out of ten now In the up of Michigan Northern Minnesota

Northern Wisconsin areas of North Dakota Upstate New York even Pennsylvania where You have Big Woods Kentucky you could Have a parcel where it's 10 acres I've Seen down in Kentucky next to some a Giant national park where you can't hunt You have 10 acres you put a five acre Food plot there you're gonna pull deer Out of that park because it's right next To the park no one can hunt there no one Can get on your property line you can Pull them out I've seen someone like That with a big water hole in a food Plot do extremely well shooting Boomers Like that because they're pulling them Out of the park they hunt them there They shoot them and uh and you don't Need much but in that case you put five Six acres of food right on the park Border you're going to do pretty darn Well and it's the same for big Wilderness Parcels you turn 10 acres Into five acres of food you're Surrounded by a national forest state Land very remote area where no one can Really get in without a lot of work Getting next to you and that's where Food is at a premium really really Critical but there are some places where You don't need food plots you'll see People talking about you don't need food Plots now I'm not going to say those People are lazy a lot of times just Don't have the time maybe the money to

Plant food plots so are those they're Those type of people Um out there and there's nothing wrong With that But if you're consciously making a Choice not to plant food pots because You think your Hunt's going to get Better very very grossly Misled and uh and and that's unfortunate So that's why I don't like seeing some Of that stuff out there where you don't Need a food plot you don't need a food Plot if no one in your area is doing Anything but even then you can't direct Traffic every day or count on that Movement but the minute someone down the Road a mile a mile and a half away Installs a great food plot program you Probably won't see very many deer during The hunting season if they do it right And that's what we teach our clients to Do to do a right so that you can be an Actual herd influencer that we'll talk About if you don't have the time don't Have the resources then you probably Won't be able to plant fruit trees Mass-producing trees maybe make some Water holes maybe don't have the time or Money then to actually put into a good Chainsaw and Timber stand Improvement Maybe you don't want to work with that Risk level but bottom line is if you Don't have the time or money for food Plots you probably can't do any of these

Things but TSI what's TSI Timber stain Improvement just managing your Timber Um unfortunately when you're managing Timber that's often the opposite of what You need to do for wildlife just because You have big beautiful trees and great Boards per foot on your property that Means you're probably a terrible Wildlife potential on the land and it's This is about a 95 rule where if you Have big valuable Timber you probably Don't have much Wildlife no matter what A forest or or a logger or quote Timber Stain Improvement expert tells you it's Because you manage your Timber well Don't pat yourself on the back because You need regeneration regeneration Equals poor value Timber whether it's Ash box elder soft maple Aspen a lot of The trees that are poor value Are the most prolific sprouters and give The most abundant cover the fastest with The most brows it could be the manage The easiest As opposed to hard Cherry hard maple Oak Trees that take a long time to grow Regenerate slowly and often take a lot Of management and forcers to look at and Say wow you need to manage this for for Um for Timber value why quote wildlife And ends up being Timber value so Timber Stand Improvement involves clear-cut Pockets changing the diversity of your Hardwoods and uh and a lot of effort on

Your part which I'm not saying you do That as a replacement for food plots or Vice versa I need I think you need both If you don't have that quality afternoon Food source you're going to find it Somewhere else especially mature Buck I Always think that a mature Buck has five Times the home range is uh as matured Always and don't family groups So within That home range it's five times larger Than those they're gonna go find that Quality food and if it's low pressure They're going to stay that's where deer Goal for the season you don't see them Anymore a lot of times they're going to Find that that uh high value food source And they're going to stay Timber stand Improvement about Wildlife stand Improvement or Timber Improvement where You're making clear-cut Pockets you're Changing the diversity of the land You're doing it where you expect a whole Deer within your woods and add Mass crop Trees apple trees and clusters where you Want to hunt them acorns chestnuts down South more down south means I wouldn't Really look at chestnuts below or above The Michigan State Line Wisconsin line Minnesota you'd want to be more in Iowa Illinois Indiana Ohio Pennsylvania once You get north of there I'm not saying People don't have luck with them but You're you're starting to Teeter on the Line where it doesn't work out although

Those Chestnut companies will happily Sell you those and then you don't Realize when you have a big Chestnut Farm like I've been to they don't they Start dropping in September and all the All the acorn or all the crop is gone Before the deer season even starts I've Seen that with beautiful trees that People have meticulously managed for 20 Years and then they all drop before the Seasoning begins and they're gone that Does happen too and so be very realistic With the timing of all these those Matters chestnuts apples acorns pears Whatever it might be there's some really Quote late dropping pairs that are good For Texas for example but not maybe good In Michigan because they get so hard They don't drop until February or March And they do nothing for deer and they're Hard they don't like them anyways that That made a work down in Texas Oklahoma But you have to be very specific to the Region you're buying these trees and Have realistic expectations for timing Because apples acorns they're gone Quickly they can't always be dependent On and that's why you can't build a deer Her you can't be a herd influencer with Great Mass crops on your property Because it's a temporary food source not A middle of August and August all the Way through January February type food Source that deer can depend on if they

Can't depend on it kind of like a water Hole if water hole dries out A deer stop going to it it takes two or Three weeks to get that pattern back Well if they dry out the end of October You're done for the rut the water hole's Not going to do anything It's same with a food plot if it runs Out they're not coming back and the food Doesn't get better three or four weeks Later during the season it's done so Very important in acorn same thing get White oak strapping I know a great white Oak spot out in Ohio but unless you're Hunting the first couple days and a Southwest faces slope with a beautiful Stand of White Oaks on the state forest Down there then you go back in Mid-october end of October those deer Are gone because the acorns are gone They're already gone and then there's Red okay corns everywhere in a case like That so when there's a good crop acorns Are everywhere So there's nothing that stands that Acorn apart from the next door neighbors Or anywhere else I'm not saying not to Plant those trees I'm just saying be Realistic with the timing of those trees Now water holes water holes can be great But you don't attract deer to your land Because of water you define movement Same with mock scrapes I've seen people Have 50 mock scrapes around a food plot

A friend of mine in the past John he had That on his property 50 mock scrapes Around his food plot thinking he's gonna Attract more deer more bucks because he Had more mock scrapes no they just Define movement a buck only has a Certain amount of time That he they used to call it time Management with mock scrapes the 50 Mark Scrapes between his bedding area and Where you want to shoot them well you're Going to keep them on your property Until dark because he has so many Scrapes to add no he hits a couple and He moves on Whether that's in front of your stand or Not but again timing is an issue with That water water again is great but it Defines movement it doesn't attract more Deer to your land a lot of these things Apple trees you have apple trees on your Property you're on that pass-through Property you have a little orchard right There where you can sit on a stand well Yeah when deer pass a buck passes Through during the Run he might go right To your stand location same with water Because you have those areas there it Defines movement mock scrape defines Movement but it's not going to help you Build a herd on your property You don't have to have a food plot if You don't care to be a herd influencer Herd influencers are the ones that

Actually attract deer on a daily basis To their property even from the edge of Their neighbor's properties They can advance some box not all of Them because let's face it you can't Control everything but you advance some Bucks a percentage twenty percent thirty Percent not five if you're hurt Influencer you're gonna promote 20 or 30 Percent more bucks to the next age class Because you protect them such a long Percentage of time some will some will Lose you know some will go to a neighbor Get shot so that's okay but if you're Doing a good job you're going to hold a Certain percentage of bucks that you Attract and move on to the next stage Class and you're actually by yourself With a 40 acre property 100 Acre Property in a neighborhood you can be The influencer in the entire area now You can do it in reverse You don't have food plots or you have Food plots you hunt the land poorly you Spooked ear off you're tracked Propel Attract repel because you have a great Level of attraction on your land for Whatever reason You can actually cause such an attract Repel condition that you're moving bucks Over a large landscape more often no Difference in getting them to cross a Road more often they're going to get hit More the more borders that deer cross

The more bucks die because they're Exposed exposed to an exponential amount Of hunters that's ever increasing with Every border that they cross that's the Idea being a herd influencer you're Limiting the amount of borders that box Cross those and funds are easy if you Have food form cover and you don't smoke Them out they'll stay in the same spot Just about all season long Mature bucks again have a five times Greater home range so they're willing to Go travel two hours or two two miles Away and find a better food source that They're comfortable with every single Season that's why a lot of times again They disappear and they come back Heard influencers the one that attracts As many deer to the land as possible While out without attracting too many Does so that they can reach their Optimum number of bucks you have to have Both there's a balance there without Attracting deer in so many places on the Land that you can't actually step foot On the land to hunt it so there's really Good bounce you know well-designed Property you have that attraction you Can hold dear in certain areas you can Still access for hunting and that's how You become a herd influencer and when You are a herd influencer then you get To actually have specific hunting Options for time and day you build a

Hunt out of it you can't have a great Hunt without a great herd and being a Herd influencer you can't be a hurt Influencer without having a great hunt The two go hand in hand Am Pm specific Deer hunting locations are critical to a Well-designed property we've seen a lot Of 40 acre Parcels I can think of Michigan in particular where they'll Have two stand locations for different Winds on a funnel they develop in the Middle what a waste of property just Wait until the rut let's go on on November 6th let's not do anything the Rest of the year no a good property Should be able to hunt on opening day The 10th day the 20th day the 30th day And day 90 all the way through that's a Good hunting property that's how you Know your herd influence you're not Influencing anything if you just set up A land for one or two stands and then You go in and hunt on a certain day in November you're not protecting deer You're just hunting moving moving deer Coming through your property that's not A herd influencer so without food plots You can't do any of this food plots Dictate that deer are going to be over Here in the evening or morning hours and They're going to be over here during Daytime hours that's bedding and feeding Areas that develops PM stands or evening Stands afternoon stands around food

Sources and then betting area stands by Morning You know morning stands by bedding areas Betting stands by Morning locations I Hope that makes sense but the more you Define those areas on your land and if You have acorns apples random deer can Be anywhere those are all daytime cover Locations now apple trees can be used to Enhance an afternoon evening food source Stand on the way to food water the same Thing but without that consistent food Source and your neighbor's land can't be The land that you're putting deer on Every afternoon meeting on AG land or Someone else's food plots You need to control that so what if they Have bad food plots what if the AG Lane Is in a rotation where it doesn't Attract deer that time of year or does Only attract deer to one side of the Land or the other because of AG Rotations then you're losing half your Property at a time you're not really Able to enjoy half your tree stands half Of the bedding areas half the mock Scraped trail cam locations I mean you Can only access one side you can only Hunt one side that's why you need to Control the property with quality food Source food plots that last the entire Season and it gives you that hunting Strategy where you can actually say a Lot of people we go to they don't have

Morning tree stands it's because you Know kind of imagine that they have food Sources but they over hunt them that's What happens most of the time that's Another you know knock on food plots That people say well with food plots we Don't see as many deer that's because They're over hunting the food plots they Put box blinds in their food plots and People say oh we have box binds on our Food plots yeah well Iowa Kansas Kentucky that's a different story Southern Ohio locations where it's more Fancy land States Where you can actually Spook deer and they come back because They're not used to the hunting pressure That is applied in most of the north Half of the country when it comes to Whitetails so very important to your Hunting strategy options if you don't Care about being an 80 percenter what Does that mean an 80 percenter you Should be doing well enough for your Property with food plots and you're not Going to do it without food plots that You shoot your target Buck eighty Percent of the time over a 10-year Period that means sometimes two a year Because you're shooting two out of three Of your target box or one or two out of Two or three or three or four of your Target box The bottom line is you're being able to

Harvest consistently Those mature bucks and you can only do That with food because food is what sets The daily pattern for a mature buck and The older becomes The more critical that food is to his Daily life and it's unpressured food he Has to find it and if he doesn't find in Your land he'll go find it yeah there's Always that slim chance will come Through the rut there's a slim chance You're going to hunt that buck and kill Him but I want to see you be an 80 Percenter I want to see you be a herd Influencer I want to see being the five Percent Club meaning less than five Percent of all Whitetail properties Actually attract and hold and give the Option for hunting mature bucks almost Every day of the season because they're Around so often That's less than five percent of all Properties it's not just a fluke You can build it and it doesn't matter It's all relative it could be that a two And a half year old buck in your area Is the mature back in the area Someone can always be that best property Very few properties actually hold mature Box the oldest in the area whether They're an average of two years old or An average of six years old very very Few properties doesn't matter what the Percentage is in a given area that's why

Iowa we'll go to clients that are sick Of shooting 150 160 inch bucks because They're trying to get the 180s and 200s Now that are in the area same with Southeast Ohio some of these great areas Cool thing about Southeast Iowa Ohio There's a lot of competition over there A lot of smaller Parcels but man there's Some big bucks It's a it's a really cool one of my Favorite places to go to I'll actually Be there next month for nine clients in 10 days so I enjoy going over there And seeing those properties but bottom Line is Without food plots Am Pm stands being hurt influencer being In the 80 Club being in that five Percent club or even a smaller Percentage that actually attract mature Bucks on a daily basis unless you have a Pass-through parcel or something you Really need to have food plots in your Private land don't let anyone tell you Well you can do it all without food Plots sounds good if I could do it out Here with all without food plots that'd Be awesome I probably wouldn't even have A seed company if that was the case Because I'd rather just go work on the Timber plant some trees here and there And not have to worry about planting Throwing lime on the soil herbicide Controlling weeds doing it right

Spending the time to do it all and the Money to do it all you know I'd rather Just work on the habitat and go hunt When I was going to do that I might as Well just go find public land because That's how much influence I'm going to Have in the area not much different than Going out and finding a great chunk of Public land to hunt on I want to be able To actually be a herd influencer in the Area and it takes food plots to do that Be very wary of quote TSI because a lot Of times it doesn't have anything to do With Whitetail Improvement I've seen TSI Where they're taking Aspen the best Regenerative wood and Timber on the Property for Grouse habitat Whitetail Habitat deer habitat box rabbits turkey Nesting and they get rid of it hack and Squirt take a dozer scarify all the root Systems in there so that that lateral Root system is destroying doesn't grow Back seen all these cases with that and The landowners thought it was what was Good for wildlife they were talked into It under the guise of quote TSI Be very wary of a lot of recommendations For your Timber Make sure you have clear-cut diversity You're changing the landscape not to not To say you don't manage Timber but you Do it more slant towards Whitetail and Do the things that we talk about on this Channel especially when it comes to food

Plots understand you have to have food Plots and this isn't like well your Property can be a six out of ten without Food plots and a 9 or 10 out of 10 with Food plots it's more like a nine or ten With food plots and a one or two without No matter what you do to the timber as Far as your herd building potential and Your hunting potential it's that drastic We see it all all the time and so I Think you've come to the right place you Know for to try to get good information On food pot strategy because food pots Are a good food plot strategy isn't About how pretty your green food plot is We talk about that how to how to Maintain great food plots It's more about how does that food plot Fit within the overall strategy of your Property to ultimately become a herd Influencer and actually be in the 80 Club where you can say you know what I Have Target bucks I want to go after Over a 10-year period I want to make Sure I'm about that 80 Mark for Achieving that success rate on Harvesting Target box on your own land And it's amazing how small the property Can be and still get that job done so do You need food plots heck yes some Limited cases you don't but I'd call Those the five percent Club maybe even Three percent Club where you really Don't need them unless

Some really great Stars aligned on your Property of luck And uh and maybe you have that property Out there and that's a good thing but uh Make sure you're focusing on those food Plots if you actually want to achieve Success with your hunting land This summer This fall and Beyond now I don't know if You've checked out our main website Lately Whitetubattetsatsolutions.com but we've Really had a lot going on including hats Books our web class and certainly our New seed company whs Wildlife Blends When you click on seed on our site it'll Take you right to our brand new site for The seed company we have all 12 Blends Available so check it all out though I Encourage you I appreciate you checking It out whether you buy anything or not Really appreciate you visiting the site And seeing what's going on and continue To watch because we have big things Coming later this year

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