John's Journal... Entry 237, Day 1
THE $30 MANAGEMENT PLAN
Editor's Note: Neil Dougherty, the BioLogic Northeastern Territory Manager and Operations Manager for the NorthCountry Whitetails Habitat Development & BioLogic Research Center in New York, has been involved with habitat development and food plot research for the past 12 years. He's worked closely with whitetail industry leaders such as Dr. Grant Woods, Charles J. Alsheimer, Bob Foulkrod, and others. The 500-acre demo center developed by Dougherty has given him numerous opportunities for magazine and newspaper articles as well as appearing on National Public Radio and TV. When he gets the chance, Dougherty can be found chasing whitetails on the NorthCountry property with his bow.
As hunters know, you can spend plenty of money on deer management by clearing land, plowing, planting and manipulating the habitat. Some hunting clubs can't afford the type of deer management that they really want. I posed this problem to Dougherty, "Suppose I've just gotten 1000 acres of land to hunt. My wife doesn't like for me to be gone every weekend. She says I can't spend more than $30 on wildlife management. How can I manage a deer herd for $30 on 1000 acres and get the most for my money, improve the habitat and grow more and bigger deer?" Dougherty laughed when he heard my proposal. But then he scratched his head and answered, "You can do a pretty good job of deer management with just $30 if you identify what needs to be done."
"Any time you can open up the forest floor so that sunlight can get to it, native grasses and shrubs will begin to grow and produce a tremendous amount of natural food for deer. Remember that although deer like young, tender plants, they only can feed on vegetation that grows up to about 6 feet off the ground. So by opening up the forest floor, creating wildlife openings and stimulating new growth, you'll drastically increase the amount of food and cover that the deer have on the property that you hunt and begin to better manage your deer herd."
To learn more about Mossy Oak BioLogic or the NorthCountry Whitetails Habitat Development Center, contact Neil Dougherty at (866) 677-9625 or visit www.mossyoakbiologic.com or www.northcountrywhitetails.com.
TOMORROW: FERTILIZE NEXT, THEN BUY BULLETS