Deer need different levels of nutrition at different stages of their life. The age of the deer herd in your area might also affect when you see a spike in feeding. Stock your property and your feeders with the proper nutrition based on the age of the deer herd in your area and help create a healthy deer herd.
What Young Deer Need
Fawns need a high-protein diet for proper antler and body development. During the spring months, after they’re first born, they’ll get their nutrition and protein from the does’ milk. As we get deeper into summer the fawns will have weaned off the does’ milk and will be seeking nutrition from your food plots along with the other bucks and does. Crops like clover, alfalfa and soybeans are high in protein. You can grow these organically in a food plot or add them to your supplemental feed in your Feedbank Gravity Deer Feeder. Our feeders hold anywhere from 40 to 600 pounds and have multiple feed ports, which means you can load up the feeder with your chosen supplement and feed multiple deer at once. Our feeders mount onto a single post, which makes it more comfortable for the deer to feed because it won’t get in the way of those growing antlers.
What Mature Deer Need
A mature deer will want their food source to be in a comfortable, hidden location. They’ll have been around long enough to become wary, so they’ll be a little bit pickier about where they choose to feed. Provide them plenty of cover. Make sure the lane or path between their bedding area and your food source is lined with trees or bushes. This will give them cover and will provide them an appetizer to graze on as they make their way to your feeder or food plot.
What They All Need
Deer of any age need water, fats, fiber, protein, sodium, calcium, phosphorus, carbohydrates, but protein, calcium and phosphorus are key for bucks growing their antlers during the summer. Bucks start growing their antlers during the late spring months, after they’ve shed last year’s pair. The growth ramps up during the summer months, so you want to make sure your property and your feeders are providing food rich in those three nutrients. This will help young and old bucks alike develop strong antlers.
All deer need water. Make sure you include a Wild Water® system on your property to complement your Feedbank Gravity Feeder. The systems, like the Wild Water® 100 7’ Trough, only release enough water to fill the trough, then the float valve shuts off. This ensures that the water in the tank is protected from the elements, providing clean water to the herd and avoiding disease and contamination. Providing deer with clean water will help their overall health. And they’ll be more inclined to visit your property if you have both a food source and a water source.
Deer need proper nutrition to help them develop. Providing them with a food source that contains those vital nutrients will help them grow and keep them healthy. Whether the deer herd in your area is young, mature, or a little bit of both, the tips above can help you plan your summer feeding schedule to match their needs.
Do you vary your post-season feed choices depending on the ages and types of deer that are feeding on your property? Let us know in the comments below!