Hunting is a waiting game. But that wait can be lessened by attracting animals to your position. A variety of food and mineral products will do just that.
Animal are naturally attracted to food, so anything they want to eat will generally attract them. Minerals, on the other hand, contribute to long-term animal health. Calcium and salt help promote antler and bone growth in deer and elk, and a variety of minerals will contribute to the general health of animals (just like with human).
Knowing Where to Put Attractants…
While food and minerals will attract wildlife, knowing where to put them will improve effectiveness. The key is to put the material where animals feel comfortable. “The biggest mistake hunters usually make with attractants is to put them out in the open, where animals are going to be skittish,” says Tim Carnahan of Evolve Habitats. “You want animals to feel protected, so choose places that have natural cover and where the animals will naturally gravitate. You don’t want to just put them out in the middle of a field–the animals won’t feel safe.”
Some liquid gel products can be effectively spread over a decaying log or stump and will slowly soak into the wood, making the whole thing a treat that your deer will consume. Reapply until the entire stump or log is consumed. It can be used to create a lick on bare ground by just pouring over the site and letting it soak in.
…And when to Put Them Out
Feed can be put before or during the hunting season, while minerals tend to have a longer lasting effect. Putting a mineral mix in the ground will bring animals back over and over.
Time release products mean you don’t have to keep going back to a site, which adds convenience. Place one or two blocks of the attractant product in an established mineral site to provide months of attraction without having to return to the site. To establish a new site, place one or two blocks in the middle of a bare spot, 4′ in diameter. Rainfall will be needed to activate the site, allowing the minerals to fully leach into the ground.
Mineral supplements attracts deer by application, moisture will cause these minerals to keep reacting and attracting deer. Bucks seeking minerals for overall health and rack development will drawn to site to lick, paw, mark and consume the minerals.
Bucks will want to protect the sire by rubbing, scraping and rolling in the mineral site to mark it as their own. The buck’s action will naturally lead to the attraction of more deer. Over time, a large deer wallow will be created as many deer develop the habit of frequenting the site to consume the beneficial minerals.
*Regulation vary from state to state ( and even from county-to-county) on feeding wildlife. Be sure to check with your appropriate government agency before developing your feeding plan.
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