bucks in soybean field

The Best Food Plot Crop

Grant Woods |

Last week I shared that I consider forage soybeans the best food plot crop for my goals of allowing deer to maximize their genetic potential of antler growth and fawn production with the additional bonus of attracting deer to my hunting stands.

This was based on my observations while hunting and an obvious relationship between where soybeans are grown and where record book bucks are harvested nationwide.

I’m not the only one to notice this relationship. Recently, researchers at Mississippi State University published their findings that deer with the biggest antlers live where soybeans are produced. This is contrary to the old theory that deer that live further north have larger antlers than deer that live in the south.

Dr. Strickland, one of the Mississippi State scientists, said:

“Soybean crops contribute the most to deer size. White-tailed deer eat only the seed of grain crops like corn, but they eat all parts of soybean plants, which are grown on rich soil. This gives them the nutrients required to grow larger bodies.

The research results may be good news for landowners looking to increase antler size on their property.

Landowners can provide an ample diet through habitat management and supplemental wildlife plantings, which can have a big impact on antler and body size.”

I suggest you read more about these scientists’ findings at:  http://www.cfr.msstate.edu/news/news.asp?guid=503 or simply do a web search on “Mississippi State Deer Soybeans”.

Between the maps I shared last week and this research by Scientists at Mississippi State, clearly forage soybeans are a great choice for food plots. Besides being proven to produce big antlers and very attractive to deer another reason to plant select forage soybeans as a food plot crop is that they are very easy to grow. Are you tired of failed food plot crops? I’ll share next week how I plant and care for soybeans in the rocky Ozark Mountains where I live and hunt!

Growing Deer together, Grant