John's Journal... Entry 250, Day 1
THE BUFFALO EFFECT FOR DEER MANAGEMENT
Cattle Operation for Hunting Mecca
Editor's Note: I've discovered the mystical Valhalla of the Vikings' dreams. In Norse mythology, Odin chose great warriors to come to his Great Hall, Valhalla, the resting place of brave Viking warriors, to rest and enjoy recreation before finally going to heaven. There they could eat, drink and fight because this magical place renewed everything the following morning, including the healing of their wounds from the "battles" of that day. At today's Valhalla for sportsmen, the Ford Ranch in Melvin, Texas, a deer hunter may say, "I can see more bucks in four hours of hunting in either the morning or the afternoon than I'll see in two to five years of hunting at home." Or, he may tell the other hunters, "I've never seen as many trophy bucks in all my life as here at the Ford Ranch. None of my friends will believe the number of bucks I've seen and passed-up." The Ford Ranch produces some of the biggest trophy bucks and the largest number of turkeys of any area I know of in the nation. But what type of management program does the ranch use to yield these numbers of big bucks and gobbling birds? Come back each day this week, and I'll answer this question and more and show you how you can use the buffalo effect on your lands to improve your wildlife.
I asked Forrest Armke, manager of the Ford Ranch since 1985, this question. He explained that, "We use a holistic system of land management that takes advantage of the buffalo effect on the land and produces more-nutritious grass than anything I know of for our deer, our turkeys and our cattle." The Ford Ranch consistently produces more than 100-trophy bucks each and every year that will score from 110 to 170 on the Boone & Crockett scale for its hunters. This desert ranch, once located at the end of the cattle drive trail, now homes as many, if not more, big deer as it does beef cattle.
Mecca For Hunters As Well As An Active Cattle Operation:
To learn more about the Ford Ranch, contact Forest Armke, Route 1 Box 81, Melvin, Texas, 76858, Phone: (325) 276-4572, or visit the Web site at www.fordranchhunting.net.
TOMORROW: WHAT IS A BUFFALO EFFECT