How to Use This Summer Deer Feeding Strategy
Where whitetails are lacking nutritious forage, they can’t grow their bodies or antlers to their maximum potential – plain and simple. In some areas, even food plots aren’t enough to provide what they need, and in these cases, supplemental deer feeders really shine. But if you’re new to using deer feeders, here are a few pointers to keep in mind. This year, consider adding this summer deer feeding strategy to your land, and see what it does for you.
Deer Food in the Summer
Without supplementation, deer tend to feed on a tender forbs and new browse during the summer. These naturally occurring plants are generally high in protein content and are pretty digestible too. Of course, they will happily also munch on agricultural crops or food plots, such as soybeans, clovers, or alfalfa if present, as these crop plants contain high levels of high quality protein.
Summer is the time that deer bounce back from the winter, build healthy body mass and grow antlers, and prepare for the rigors of the fall rut. It’s also the time when fawns are actively growing, and well-fed fawns are much more likely to survive the winter. Bucks, does, and fawns all need lots of protein over the summer to grow as fast as possible.
So what’s the purpose of summer deer feeding? Since protein is one of the most important nutrients for deer over the summer, arguably, the most important time of the year to provide supplemental deer feed to whitetails is during the summer. While winter deer feeding is certainly important to help deer during a vulnerable time, helping deer get through the summer as healthy as possible will improve their condition over the winter. But your summer deer feeding strategy should be more involved than simply providing protein pellets.
Summer Deer Feeding Strategy
If you want to make the most of your summer deer feeding, here are some good pointers to keep in mind:
- Position your deer feeder adjacent to food plots or on agricultural field edges, along with brushy edge cover to help them feel comfortable feeding. Alternatively, you can place your feeder within a wooded area located roughly 100 yards from food plots, which will help bucks feel secure to feed during the day.
- Place Boss Buck Feeders near to water sources (natural ditches/ponds or tanks) and mineral stations to provide a trifecta of attraction that is perfect for trail cameras.
- Add some attractants to your feed to help entice deer to try it. This is especially important for deer that are new to feeders, as it may take some time to get used to them, and attractants may get them to use it sooner.
Additionally, the design of the Boss Buck feeders is perfect for deer. They are durable, yet many are mobile enough to use almost anywhere. You can provide the three-way feed port heads (where the round tubes offer gravity-fed pellets), or convert it to automatic timer options. They provide feed at the right height for deer (which helps reduce consumption from other varmint species) and with legs spread far enough apart to not interfere with a buck’s antlers.
Overall, if you plant food plots and want more and healthy deer on your land, a summer deer feeding strategy may be the right approach for your property.