Building deer numbers

If maximizing doe production is important, don’t ignore a property’s amount and quality of fawning grounds.
You need fairly decent size areas of nasty thick cover to maximize fawn survival rates. By decent sized, I mean an acre or more, though, for fawn production, 5 acre pieces are better, with 10 being better still and 20 still better and so on. Again, it’s a balance between providing the best hunting and the best habitat for deer.

deer numbers

In areas with an abundance of naturally good cover, you really don’t have to worry about it. If not, one can create extra hinge cut bedding areas (I slapped in an extra on that longer ridge. As noted, part of the draw was for does having another place to hide from chasing bucks. Another was for more fawning cover). Sure, it’s nice when they are bigger, but even a 1/2 acre is better than hiding on a mature ridge top, laying next to a large tree with nothing else for cover.

Another method is planting spruce or warm season native grasses. I almost see those two plantings as interchangeable in most ways, with the spruce offering thermal cover and the native grasses tending to offer a bit more weedy growth for feeding. At the same time, having a combo of brush, evergreens, weeds and WSNGs can produce the fantastic bedding and fawning ground, in many situations.