Mathews Inc.
Soil pH and antler growth
Whitetail Deer
Contributors to this thread:
Jaybee 06-Feb-23
KHNC 06-Feb-23
WV Mountaineer 06-Feb-23
fuzzy 10-Feb-23
drycreek 10-Feb-23
Bow Crazy 13-Feb-23
Bow Crazy 13-Feb-23
From: Jaybee
06-Feb-23
I know that a more balanced pH of the soil improves the yield of the crops that are grown due to the more neutral pH allowing the release of NPK and other nutrients from the soil. Does the more neutral pH itself aid in antler growth? I am able to grow crops such as soybeans, brassicas, clovers, etc in a pH below 6 but we still have pretty poor antler growth in our area. I am wondering if I lime heavily will that help with antler growth.

From: KHNC
06-Feb-23
If it does, I am not aware of it. Most of SC has trouble with red clay and low PH. Always helps to have good PH for everything else. Definitely worth it to add lime in my opinion for all the other benefits.

06-Feb-23
I’m pretty sure it does. A neutral ph makes nutrient uptake of plants more efficient. More nutrients in the food eaten translates in healthier food for the consumer.

Go buy a dozen trees from a nursery. Plant them. Watch the deer hammer them. It’s due to nursery trees being grown in nutrient rich soil.

From: fuzzy
10-Feb-23
Lime is calcium carbonate. Antlers are bone. Bone is calcium based. No Brainer

From: drycreek
10-Feb-23
I hope it does, but I’m thinking it has minimal impact unless you have bigger food plots than I do. I’m the only guy planting food plots in my immediate area and my two acres or less ain’t gonna grow any booners considering a whitetail buck’s normal range.

From: Bow Crazy
13-Feb-23
Does the more neutral pH itself aid in antler growth? They only way it will is that by improving the soils PH it helps you add more volume/more tonnage for the deer to eat in your food plots. Adding lime and fertilizer to your food plots makes your plants bigger/adds volume so there is more food for the deer to eat. It does not make these same plants more nutritious, again there is just more to eat. Dr. Craig Harper from the University of Tennessee, and his graduate students, talk about it all this all the time. I've heard the same thing from the University of Mississippi. BC

From: Bow Crazy
13-Feb-23
I forgot to add this, Jaybee I see you are in Wisconsin. My guess is that if you are experiencing poor antler growth it's more of an issue with the age of the bucks in your area. We have the genetics, nutrition in the lower 2/3 of the state shouldn't be an issue especially if you are in a farming community, that leaves age would be a guess on my part is your issue. Let'm Go, Let'm Grow. BC

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