There are many myths, misinformation, and hunting stories that lead the whitetail hunter astray from what is truth. The truth of this matter is more important than what you may think. During the podcast we learn just how effective bucks and does are at producing offspring that make it to the fall and are recruited into the herd. You may be shocked to learn that 60% of bucks only replace themselves during their entire lifetime. Sure a lot of fawns are conceived, but not as many as you think make it to a reproductive age, so really, is that big buck truly passing on his "genes"? 15-15% of each recruited fawn is also produced by a 1.5-2.5 year old buck, so "inferior" or younger bucks also contribute to the breeding. We need to learn that this complex exchange, survival relationship for whitetail deer is anything we can strongly influence or control. Stay the course, let deer reach maturity and increase the nutrition available on the landscape, this will have the largest impact on antler expression. Period.
Jeff knows turkey research as well as most anyone we’ve met and is dead set on spreading the truth. Why? The answer is simple, he wants more turkeys on the landscape! We dove in to see what drives his passion for turkeys and the habitat they depend.
This podcast is for you guys who wonder what to do if you can't burn but still want to create disturbance.
Brood habitat has been identified as the most limiting factor across the landscape for turkeys. We are learning how to create it, but sometimes limiting factors prevent us from doing it exactly by “the book”. With a working knowledge of how things work, often times we are forced to throw the book away and try things outside the box in an attempt to achieve our goals. Sometimes it doesn’t work at all, and sometimes things turn out great, but regardless we gain valuable knowledge. So, sometimes it’s best to weigh out all your options and just do it!
Dr Marcus Lashley and Dr Will Gulsby have been driving home the point of habitat management for turkeys since rhe launch of their Wild Turkey Science podcast but in this week's episode we're talking predators! We're not talking about what predators do to nests nearly as much as the debate on what trapping and social media may do to hunters in general. Please listen in to hear our perspective on trapping and social media. #Forloveoftheland
On this episode we discuss the management strategies to create the most limited resource available for wild turkeys in 2023. This critical collection of herbaceous plants and bare ground, are in limited supply and must be created intentionally if you want wild turkeys in the future. Kyle and Matt discuss the different ways you can create this cover from transforming fields or timber. If you’re actively trying to promote turkeys, this is a must listen. Brood rearing cover will the impact that improves turkey reproduction. We see it time and time again, the farms that have good Turkey populations, have adequate brood rearing cover available. Time to transition old fields, food plot edges, crop fields, and thinned timber into brooding cover by offering herbaceous broadleaf plants and bare ground. If you learned more about turkeys from listening, please share!
This week we discuss management practices that benefit ground nesting birds and deer. Deer are able to thrive in a variety of habitat but turkey and quail rely on specific habitat types to exist. In this roundtable discussion with returning guest Chuck Mays & Daric Denney we talk about practices that are helpful to both animals and can possibly save you time and money while giving you a bigger return on the landscape.
Put your listening ears on for this one! We have a heavy hitter coming at you as we interview Dr. Marcus Lashley and Dr. Will Gulsby from Wild Turkey Science Podcast. We review in great detail the recent podcasts revolving around the essential habitat needed for reproduction of the wild turkey. To no surprise the conversation quickly gets to the importance of early successional vegetation on the landscape for nesting and brood rearing cover. It was found in a recent research project that 45% of the hens selected only 7% of the landscape consisting of the early successional cover and shrubland. Not surprisingly, there was a 38% success rate in these areas for nests, which is pretty exceptional for maintaining and growing turkey populations! After covering these staggering numbers, we then shift the conversation towards baiting and the implications it has on the landscape and how it largely impacts predators in a very positive way. Baiting is not a practice that we would support or suggest if you are interested in producing more turkeys on the landscape. We hope you share this podcast with everyone who cares about the wild turkey.
It's 2023 and there is an overwhelming amount of content to consume, only one problem, it all contradicts the other. So how do you know which viewpoint to follow? SHould you listen to this person opinion of this other persons? Our advice, do what's right for you farm's ecosystem and use research backed advice to get the maximum results!
As more landowners shift to thinking about habitat work, more questions pop up; Do I need a consultant? Do I need a contractor? How do I choose someone? What work needs to be done? How do I determine what’s the most important? Which practice is best? The best answer is, it depends! Lol This week we dive into some of this and discuss the in’s and out’s of several practices and how to make some of these decisions.
We added to the Woodlands this year, and it's something we're very excited about!
Simple yet effective is the name of the game. From a business perspective it’s, a supply vs demand scenario. Have species demand early successional vegetation, yet the supply is very limited on most landscapes. In this podcast, we walk you through step by step of how to implement the technique of old field management. The most important aspect is effective termination of cool season grasses. From there, you burn the thatch, spray invasive species, and let the sun and seed bank do the rest. Don’t overlook this dynamic, yet effective tool land management tool. If you want to reproduce turkeys on your farm, you need to consider promoting early successional plant communities.
With the ongoing turkey decline and quail numbers completely nonexistent in several areas these days, it’s so encouraging to see more landowners doing habitat management practices to help restore numbers. This week we discuss what we are seeing and some of the reasons more landowners are jumping on board.
We're discussing the recent Forestry Management Plan we put together for our home farm the Woodlands and how we're managing for wildlife even though it's timber. This podcast will make you see the forest in a different light and how you can manage for long term results. #Forloveoftheland
After a long day in the field Matt and Frank review a land and wildlife habitat consultation from central Kansas. This farm ground in the Great Plains region can be good, but it has its limitations. Adequate cover for whitetails is limited. So it’s time to break the mold and start with a new mindset to really up the value of cover for whitetail deer. But deer isn’t the only objective, we’ve got bobwhite quail, pheasants, and waterfowl to consider on this farm as well. We stretch the limits and push hard for creative habitat plans. This consultation was no different. To get different results, you just manage differently!
This week we are joined by Matt Farmer, Public Land Manager with Kansas Department of Wildlife & Parks to discuss managing moist soil for waterfowl. In this episode we discuss the benefits of managing food sources as well as pressure these birds face and ways to help combat it.
This is a loaded question that we often get while working with hunters and landowners. It can be difficult to answer as herd density, hunting pressure, and the habitat will strongly influence these sightings. So what we did was go to the numbers that research has provided and determine with several likely scenarios that most landowners can find themselves in. You may be surprised by the numbers or lack there of mature deer, 4.5+ in two common herd scenarios on a per square mile basis. 640 acres represents a square mile, so within that acreage of varying herd density, we tell you what can be expected. The number of mature bucks on the landscape should only encourage you to increase the quality of habitat that your acreage offers. Deer select quality habitat on a daily basis, so having stronger influence over the individuals within a herd should drive you to work hard. Share this podcast with someone who needs to learn more about deer population dynamics and specifically revolving around the odds of encountering mature bucks each fall.
Nothing will get landowners more fired up than a timber harvest gone wrong. The aftermath often last for years and the next harvest may not come during their lifetime. Foresters and loggers often get put into the same category as a used car salesman, but it's time to break this down. We are going to dive deep into the phrase and science behind the dreaded high-graded timber. First we discuss the expectations that landowners who are conducting a timber harvest must have, do you really expect the logger to come and not harvest larger, more marketable timber? Aggressive timber harvests may be necessarily dependent upon the condition of the timber or the past management. A less aggressive approach such as select harvesting isn't always the best option as it limits the production of quality wildlife habitat and also decreases oak production over time. Here are the facts, sometimes, you need to address the issue and stop putting bandaids on the problem. Timber management and harvesting is very situationally based, so keep this mind when listening to this podcast. But remember not every harvest of an oak is a high-grade, there is likely more to the story, but most importantly there is more work that needs to be done, like future TSI, prescribed fire, and patience.
Arkansas has long been known as the Duck capital of the world, but changes need to be made if we are going to keep that title. Join us this week as we discuss ducks past and present as well as managing your property to attract and hold more of these birds we love.
The time was yesterday to start working on improving your property. The changes didn’t occur overnight, we’ve allowed decades of zero management, prior management, or lack of management create or shape the landscape we now know. Improving our land, soil, air, and water need to take priority. The work load is increasing by the day, so take the steps you need to address the issues at hand. We are not only hunters, landowners, but we are called to be land stewards. Some of us inherit problems when we purchase land, but once the deed is signed, it’s time to get to work. Join us in then fight to improve our landscape and restore ecosystems.
It's time to grind, February is movement month for the health, diversity potential, and overall improvement of your property. You should be improving your timber for wildlife by thinning the canopy or by executing TSI (timber stand improvement). There are however so many different opinions regarding TSI if you ask anyone. Do be sure to listen to this podcast thoroughly. Like always, you need to start with your goals and objectives for that stand of timber. Once you have clear objectives the proper techniques of doing TSI will become more clear. There is no one size fits all approach to TSI. We breakdown in detail what to and and what not to do when completing TSI of all shapes and sizes for whitetail deer and wild turkeys. If you want to take your farm to the next level, learn how to complete TSI and then EXECUTE!
Join Kyle and Frank as they chase birds in the west!
Kyle and Frank are returning from an exciting hunt out west chasing various bird species in some of the prettiest country you can find! Tune in to hear how they plan so you to can have success in the field.
Join us this week as we discuss how John Hauk has transformed his Illinois property into a wildlife paradise.
Alan Sommerford has been a run of success in the great state of Alabama but don't picture a land of milk and honey for wildlife. Alan is a cattle farmer with the idea of using the land to support his family all while also providing benefit for the wildlife. Tune in to hear how Alan is using hay production to benefit wildlife and make money.
After a recent consultation trip to North Texas, Kyle and Matt design a killer habitat management plan for this property. During the podcast we break down the recommendations from top to bottom and how the eco-region plays a huge role in natural resource management. The goal of this farm was to better manage the natural vegetation to create predictable movement and develop a hunting strategy around this. The Cross-Timbers Region is full of post oaks, blackjack oaks, and greenbrier, take a listen as we break down how we turn this into a whitetail deer haven. We talk about techniques such as travel corridor management, the installation of native food plots or wildlife openings, 2 -types of bedding thickets, and the usage and placement of corn feeders. If you want to learn how habitat managers think through the process of managing a large ranch for whitetail deer in Texas, then give this podcast a listen!
This week we are joined by Cory Gray and Ralph Meeker from the Arkansas Game & Fish Commission to discuss what’s going on with our deer herd. Several issues from CWD to Gnats have plagued the deer herd across the state, but where are we now? Join us as we discuss what’s happening and what to expect.
We're covering all kinds of topics this week on the podcast, from favorite doe hunt, to biggest flops in habitat management. This podcast is different than every other podcast we've ever done so you don't want to miss it!
The Hedges Farm in SE Kansas has been on a roll during the last few years. Kyle Hedges, a Land & Legacy consultant has been managing this family farm with clear intentions the last 5 years and the results speak for themselves. Although this farm has been in the family for more than 20 years, time is now on Kyle's side to manage the property for harvesting mature whitetails with a bow. In the past few years, invasive species control, pollinator planting, TSI, bedding thickets, and burning have been on the top of the priority list. Between Kyle and his hunting buddy Byron who is another wildlife professional, they have been very intentional to move the needle on consistently harvesting top quality whitetails. In the past 3 seasons, they have tagged 4 mature bucks on this 160 acres with one 180-inch whitetail during the 2022 season. If you want more from your farm, be intentional with your management like Kyle and Byron. To hear how they have increased their success, be sure to give this podcast a download!
Mention turkeys on any social media page and the conversation quickly turns to the population decline and the opinions on why the decline is happening. Today we are joined with Dr Marcus Lashley from the University of Florida and Dr Will Gulsby from Auburn University for a big announcement. These two turkey research specialists have teamed up with Turkeys For Tomorrow (TFT) and are starting their own unbiased podcast to address the facts and debunk the myths surrounding the wild turkey and their environment. We look forward to tuning into their show and hope you do as well, the future of our turkey population depends on us all joining together to create a better environment for these birds we love.