Whitetails Late Season Food Sources

 buck named "Fat Albert"

I grew up deer hunting whitetails in Georgia and we didn’t get much snow and I never got to hunt in it. Well I moved to Kansas and all that changed.

The snow has arrived here in Kansas and it got me thinking about the whitetails and how they survive the tough winter conditions.

Whitetails

 

The bucks have to gain the weight they lost during the rut and the does that are pregnant must feed two. I think that’s why it is important to have a herd that is within the carrying capacity of the land, to make sure there is enough food for them to survive and be healthy. And the way to have a herd within the carrying capacity is to balance the herd with a 1 buck to 1 doe ratio being ideal. If you have more does than bucks all the does won’t be bred during the peak of the rut and that will cause a lot of fawns to be born later and they possibly won’t be mature enough to make the following winter and would be more likely to be at risk to predators, and you will end up with more and more does every year and the herd will be over the carrying capacity of the land. So it is important to shoot some does when deer hunting. It will keep your herd healthy, and they taste really good on the grill.

whitetails in snow

Whitetails need quality late season food sources to survive the harsh winter conditions.

I have been in Kansas for almost three years now and being from the south I had never seen any whitetails that were starving to death but I saw a young doe last winter that was laying in the snow starving to death and it is not pretty. I know the old saying “only the strong survive” but it was sad. I have a deer hunting honey hole behind my house and during the cold winter months I like to keep corn out back there to help the whitetails.

It can get expensive but I feed them when I can. Food plots and supplemental feeding or having agriculture crops late in the season can tremendously help the overall health of the herd along with balancing the buck to doe ratio. Click the following link for more information onuality deer management.


Rut Over Whitetails Feeding

Now is the time to focus on the food sources with most of the does being bred in November and most whitetails past the peak of the rut.

buck with cedar limb stuck in his antlers from rubbing

Whitetails Feeding After Rut

There will still be some does come into estrous that did not get bred earlier in the rut, but it will be sporadic and harder to pin-point than the peak rut. And with winter settling in the whitetails need to consume a lot of food to help them get through the winter. The bucks need to regain weight lost during the last month or so and the does are pregnant and need to consume enough food to feed two. So if you have food plots where you hunt that is the place to find whitetails.

"Horn Donkey" with a smaller buck eating corn during the rut

This time of year whitetails need to consume a lot of food to be able to survive the tough winter conditions.

Especially this time of year when the hard frosts that have happened across much of the country have killed most of the green browse that has been available to the deer up until this point of the deer season. If you don’t have food plots but baiting is legal to hunt over in the state you hunt now would be a great time to hunt over that big pile of corn or whatever product you have been successful with deer hunting. If you don’t have food plots or baiting isn’t legal where you hunt you could be at a big disadvantage if your neighboring properties have food plots unless your property has good thick cover where the deer bed and you can intercept them going from there to feed on your neighbors property. If you don’t have the food or the cover you better hope you have some water and if you do that’s where you want to look for tracks and trails. If you don’t have food, cover or water then your guess is as good as mine. I’m not trying to be negative, I’m just keeping it real. Even if you don’t have the food, cover or water all hope is not lost. There is no telling what pressured deer will do, so if your neighbor runs a big boy onto you’re property you need to be there. That is the thing about this time of the year, it can be a grind and absolutely exhausting. It is colder than earlier in the year, deer sightings tend to be less because of being hunted all year long, but the one that is determined and doesn’t give up still at least has that chance. I remember a hunting club I was in back in Georgia and it was the last weekend of the year and on the last day of the season New Years eve we had a guy shoot the biggest buck of his life on the last evening of the season. And it was all because he had not given up and was still out there trying. Remember persistence and hard work will eventually pay off.

Tell us how your season is going, even send us some pictures of you with your big buck and we’ll try to post them on DHBB for everyone to see.

Giant Kansas Whitetail

Horn Donkey

Well, I went and checked my trail camera today and I can’t tell you how excited I am to see a giant Kansas whitetail on my trail camera.

Giant Kansas Whitetail Pictures

I got a giant Kansas whitetail on the trail camera right behind my house. He is a main frame 12 pointer with great tine length and great mass and we believe he will score in the upper 170′s easily and we have named him “Horn Donkey”. He is officially on our hit list. DHBB Pro-Staffer Troy will be here next week and we will be trying to get the giant Kansas whitetail on film deer hunting in the mid-west. This is the second buck that I have gotten pictures of so far that we believe will go 170 plus. And the big boys are starting to get a little frisky and the next couple of weeks¬† of deer hunting ought to be crazy. I can’t wait to get out and film some of the intense rut action here in the heartland. And there is no challenge as exciting as matching wits with a giant Kansas whitetail.

I got this giant Kansas whitetail on trail camera for the first time this week.

I will be filming  for a buddy of mine this week and he has some really nice bucks showing up on his properties as well. Hopefully we can get some big deer down. I just love this time of year, when the big boys start chasing and cruising, there is nothing like being in the woods when the rut action heats up. I plan on getting out as filming hunts as much as possible during the next few weeks. How about where you hunt, are you starting to get any big boys on your trail camera? This is the time of year to get out and stay in the woods as much as possible, even stay out all day if possible. The more time you can spend in the woods the better your odds of seeing a mature buck will be. Even if you are not getting any pictures of the big boys if you have does on your property eventually the big boy will show up, and he may even be a buck that you have never seen before. So get out and log those hours in the woods to increase your chances of seeing that big brute you have been dreaming of. If you get a buck send us some pictures and the story and we will try to get them on here to share with our readers. Good luck everyone!

giant Kansas whitetail

This buck showed up on my trail camera right behind my house.

I wanted to remind everyone to stay safe out there and wear those safety harnesses. Just last week I heard some sad news about a guy that was Bill Jordan’s long time camera-man. Apparently he fell out of a tree and he passed away. Us hunters are all brothers and sisters and it is sad to hear one of our brothers has died from a accident in the outdoors. Our thoughts and prayers are with Mike’s family and friends. I wasn’t sure if I should say something about this unfortunate accident but if I can help save but one person from being injured or dieing then it is something that I felt I should mention. Stay safe out there everyone, it only takes a split second for an accident to happen.