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Old March 9, 2013, 08:13 AM   #34
Double Naught Spy
Senior Member
Join Date: January 8, 2001
Location: Forestburg, Montague Cnty, TX
Posts: 11,537
Corn works!
Yes, deer and hogs will eat it. You don't have to do anything to it and they will eat it. Having a proper delivery system will make it a lot easier on you to provide the corn and then ideally concentrate your population at least during feeding periods.

You can use soured corn, but I haven't seen anybody with a good metering system that dispenses it at regular intervals. You can dig a post hole and fill it with corn, but then you have to dig a hog and if the hogs get into it (which you hope) then your post hole grows exponentially in size and sooner or later you need to back fill it. Digging and backfilling can be a lot of unnecessary work.

Pig pipes are great for pigs, but have to be filled fairly often once the pigs find them. You can attach a bell on the pipe and hear from a distance when the animals are getting after the pipe, but unless you can fill it every few days, a pig pipe may not be the way to go.

On demand gravity feeders do a good job, but can be emptied by pigs in short order as well.

Motorized dispersing feeders, depending on size can cost $100-500+ (I have never paid more than 140 and if you do fabrication, you can save a lot of money) and can meter out corn or a specific schedule (digital timer) with multiple feeding times and varied amounts of dispensed corn. As mine are smaller feeders, I get about 3-4 weeks of feeding out of 75 lbs from one feeder and closer to 10 weeks out of 150 lbs from the other.

Food plots can be absolutely wonderful. They can also be a lot of work, are not portable, and as with farmers, your food plot can readily be killed by nature. Food plots can be relatively pricey when you consider time and equipment involved and their appeal really varies over time, but it can be a fairly long period of time if not wiped out early. My winter plot (planted in late Sept) has provided browse for the deer all winter (becoming of interest in December after the acorns started to become scarce) and now has a particular appeal to a population of turkeys (though they seem to be harvesting bugs from it, not the plants yet as there is no grain). The hogs have already destroyed about 10% of it from rooting over the course of just 2 nights and if last year is any indication, the hogs and deer will virtually obliterate everything in about 3 weeks time once the grain comes in to maturity.

What goes in your food plot will vary depending on your local environmental conditions and how much work you want to put into it. On some of the hunting forums, there are guys who grow award-winning-like food plots that have electric fences on them for the first few weeks, install irrigation systems, fertilize, pesticide, herbicide, etc., just like growing real crops for human consumption. They grow wonderful plots and have good hunting, but they also have significant investments in time, labor, and materials. I like to plant forage that will thrive well in the local conditions without all that work.
"If you look through your scope and see your shoe, aim higher." -- said to me by my 11 year old daughter before going out for hogs 8/13/2011
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Last edited by Double Naught Spy; March 9, 2013 at 02:33 PM.
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