onX Maps
Ideas for a new clear-cut
Whitetail Deer
Contributors to this thread:
Vino&Venison 20-Dec-22
Bigdog 21 20-Dec-22
fuzzy 20-Dec-22
South Farm 20-Dec-22
Vino&Venison 20-Dec-22
B2K 21-Dec-22
WV Mountaineer 21-Dec-22
Bow Crazy 21-Dec-22
Vino&Venison 22-Dec-22
fuzzy 22-Dec-22
fuzzy 22-Dec-22
Vino&Venison 23-Dec-22
t-roy 23-Dec-22
fuzzy 23-Dec-22
From: Vino&Venison
20-Dec-22
My property is in NW Wisconsin and I just had it logged. We have a 5 acre clear cut north of our biggest plot (7acs) and south of our neighbors grass field that he hays for cattle. The also did a heavy select cut on 12 acres south of our largest food plot. My thoughts on the 12 acre heavy select cut is to seed down the logging roads with a clover mix and let the rest of it regenerate unless there are other ideas people have. The clear cut 5 ac area I was thinking of planting some sweet clovers, switch along the road to block poachers view, and maybe some pollinators. With the thought of burning some or all of it at different stages to keep it in an early successional growth stage. I've never done this and I have an open canvas and I am open to ideas.

From: Bigdog 21
20-Dec-22
Leave it alone you will end up having a good place for all wild life. Rabbits can hide deer will bed. Mine grew pretty thick in Brier's and holds alot of deer. Rabbits where never around much, (Coyotes) but have now made a good comeback . Try to stay out and give them room it will be a small sanctuary for the deer.

From: fuzzy
20-Dec-22
Check your soil pH before you try clover. If it's over 6.0 under 6.5 lime lightly 1/2 ton per acre and sow clover. If it's under 6.0 lime heavily 1.5 ton per acre and wait 6 months to sow, then lime again next fall.

From: South Farm
20-Dec-22
Planting your trails with clover will be shooting yourself in the foot...first you will be attracting deer to the very trails you probably want to use to access your area. Secondly, you planted plots and created clearings for a reason...Food. The more places they have to feed the less you can count on them being where you want them to be...not to mention you risk spooking them everytime you use those trails if they're planted in clover. Hindsight is 20/20, but you should've left a buffer on that 5 acre cut that poachers can't see through...the $ you made on that thin strip will now be used up planting and maintaining switch. I'm no expert, and I certainly understand wanting to improve one's property, but sometimes the best thing you can do is nothing at all.

From: Vino&Venison
20-Dec-22

Vino&Venison's DeerBuilder embedded Photo
Vino&Venison's DeerBuilder embedded Photo

This is a photo from the dead end road. You can see the fields on both sides.

From: B2K
21-Dec-22
Establish any trails and shooting lanes (for rifle hunting) that you may want now, before the regrowth gets tall and makes it hard to see where you want them. Having a trail system sure is nice even if you don't use them very often.

21-Dec-22
Sow the trails in wheat. It’s good cover, noninvasive, and the deer love it. Use those same trails for access. In other words, keep them open and passable. Set stands on them as well.

From: Bow Crazy
21-Dec-22
Along the road I would plant two rows of pine/spruce for a permanent visual barrier, then an 8'-10' wide row of switch for a short term fix. I am in west central Wisconsin, we used Norway Spruce for one we did, another we use White Spruce and White Pine, every other tree, 8' apart. Norway Spruce is the fastest growing of the three. Within our clear cuts we put in a couple of food plots, something to consider. Put in the food plots where you want them for easy of access/hunting. I would get in there and mark out any deer travel corridors you want to maintain, bedding areas, and your hunting access trails and even roads for accessing with ATV or ? Anyway, now is the time to get the plan on paper and start now. BC

From: Vino&Venison
22-Dec-22
Thanks for all the great suggestions. We plan to leave the 12ac section as more of a sanctuary and won’t be hunting in there much except maybe a rifle stand over looking everything from a ridge top. That’s why I don’t mind seeding down the roads because we aren’t going to use them really.

For the 5 acre clear-cut I like the thought of a little kill plot below one of the ridge tops we could sneak into and catch deer stopping off before hitting or larger destination fields.

I appreciate the insight. Merry Christmas All!

From: fuzzy
22-Dec-22
I've done a lot of this over the years in the Southern Appalachian region. Seeded Roads and trails are great for wildlife. #1 amend the soil for the crop you want. #2 pile brush for cover. #3 put in twists and turns for stalking cover. #4 have trails intersect and let some sections grow up and then clear and alternate. #5 Hinge-cut high value browse trees near trails. #5 write up a plan and make a map. Make copies of the original for each year . Record big game sightings and kills with dates each year, on the map. AFTER a few years you can see what's working and do more of that.

From: fuzzy
22-Dec-22
Try your best to develop a good relationship with your adjoining farmers. You may be able to get them on board with your management goals. Trade out work if they're open to it.

From: Vino&Venison
23-Dec-22
Fuzzy- Thanks for the insight from you experience and sharing your knowledge. This is not farm country and the farmers up here only make hay from grass to keep taxes low. We have a JD 5205 and a great plains seed drill we plant with. Trying this no till diversity mix planting and I'm not completely sold on it yet. Deer didn't touch my milo, I've heard they have to learn to like it maybe?? Clover seemed to be the biggest draw during the entire season even into our Late November Gun Season. Maybe because the beans were long gone this year. Had a couple straight Cereal Rye plots that were also shown favor by the deer as it got cold. I tried planting 7 acres of beans in 2021 and they never produced a pod. Also add corn to the mix and the deer ate the corn to the ground and it never made a cob. Trying something a little different as our soil isn't great.

From: t-roy
23-Dec-22
If you’re trying to grow soybeans and corn (which I love for fall/winter food plots) you should look into electric plot fences. It’s the only way I can get my corn and beans to maturity without the deer decimating them in the summer. There have been several threads on the fences, here on Bowsite over the years.

From: fuzzy
23-Dec-22
Sounds like you're set. Poor soil? Clover and winter rye and lime. Ask your neighbors who are hobby-hay farming if you can put in strips of clover and rye along the property boundaries and some sunflowers, or corn, with it as a means to promote movement across them and onto you?

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