As the weather warms up, it’s time to start thinking about what you’ll be feeding your deer this summer. Deer are herbivores, which means they eat plants and don’t eat meat. But even though they have a vegetarian diet, they still need a few different things in order to survive.
Deer need water to stay hydrated, so you should make sure there’s always enough water for them to drink. In addition to water, deer also need protein and minerals from plants. They get most of their nutrients from eating grasses, shrubs, and trees; however, if there isn’t enough food available for them in your area, then it may be necessary for you to supplement their diet with some additional food sources.
Summer is the time of year when deer are at their fattest and that means it’s a great time to feed them.
But what should you feed them? There are many options, so we’ve compiled a list of some of our favorites:
Alfalfa is an excellent source of protein, fiber, and vitamins A and D, so it’s a great choice for summertime feeding. It’s also relatively inexpensive and easy to find at most feed stores or online.
Deer pellets/soybean meal
These are also high in protein and fiber, but they tend to be more expensive than alfalfa hay. They’re also more difficult to find at smaller feed stores or online retailers. However, if you have access to these products then they’re certainly worth considering.
Corn silage/corn stover silage
Corn silage is another good source of protein, fiber, and vitamins A and D (in addition to other micronutrients), but it can be difficult to find in small quantities at local farms or even larger grocery stores. As such, it might not be as effective if you only have access.
Summer is a good time to lay off feeding your deer. The lack of food and water can be the cause of their migration toward other areas. It’s also important to note that summer is a dangerous time for deer because it is when they are most vulnerable to predators such as wolves and bears.
Whether you’re feeding your deer a garden full of forbs, corn, and fruit, or allowing them to roam free, knowing what to feed your deer is vital to a happy and healthy backyard. Here are some things to remember when planning your deer diet:
In the spring, does are nursing their fawns and bucklings are growing new antlers. This growth spurt allows the animals to build up fat reserves and prepare for the winter. By the end of the summer, they are mostly surviving on forbs and native browse. Whitetails consume approximately 70% of their diet during the summer. In addition to forbs, deer also eat acorns and dried soybeans.
Forbs are native, warm-season flowering plants. They can grow to three to four feet in height. They’re important for deer food because they contain a high amount of protein. In addition, they can rival the protein content of commercial supplemental forage. Some forbs are even higher in crude protein than commercial supplemental feeds. Whether you’re looking to feed deer in summer or fall, there’s a forb to suit your needs.
Plants with high nutritional value are the best choice for feeding deer. For the most nutritious and diverse forage, white-tailed deer prefer plants with succulent tips and leaves. In food plots for deer, mix cool-season forages like Ladino or Arrowleaf clover. For a summer forage mix, consider cowpeas, soybeans, or mungbeans. Avoid legumes as these species tend to be unsuitable for central Oklahoma.
White-tailed deer typically select forbs that have high protein and high palatability. They will often ignore other species of plants, such as buckwheat because they prefer the parts that are easily digestible. The new growth of native vegetation is a great source of protein and complex carbohydrates. Learning how to recognize native plants is an important part of managing white-tailed deer populations.
If you’re looking for healthy, high-protein food to feed deer, consider growing brassicas in your backyard. The deep snow they endure during the winter months puts them at risk for starvation and lack of nutrients. Brassicas, on the other hand, is a great source of nutrition that deer love. In addition to their flavor and nutritional value, Brassicas also improve the soil.
When choosing which brassicas to feed deer in the summer, keep in mind that not all of them are created equal. Different types of brassicas produce different results. Try a food plot mix by Antler King Trophy Products. The company hand-picks each mix for superior attraction and digestibility. Then, you can see for yourself why the company offers such high-quality mixes. Adding this type of food to your deer plot will help you increase your chances of success.
In addition to providing forage, Brassicas are also extremely digestible. Large leafy greens in Brassica mixes provide around 15 percent of your deer’s daily protein, and plants with roots and bulbs provide slightly less. Corn is an excellent source of energy, but Brassicas provide a healthier alternative. A brassica mix can provide ten to twelve thousand pounds of forage per acre. It is important to remember to remove all weeds before broadcasting your seeds.
Adding brassicas to food plots is a great way to feed deer throughout the growing season. By planting them during the summer, deer can eat them throughout the year. It may take several seasons before deer become interested in eating brassicas. After the frost, the plants have been exposed to the elements, making them more palatable. In addition to being high-quality forage, many varieties of brassica have edible bulbs that deer can eat throughout the winter.
While it’s tempting to offer your deer human food, the best way to feed deer is to let them eat from your garden. A good rule of thumb is to give them plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables from the garden, but avoid offering them human food. These treats will only encourage your deer to become dependent on you for their nutrition. Fruits and vegetables will keep deer healthy and well-nourished. Deer will eat these foods in the summer to prepare for winter. They will store up fat to survive the cold months ahead.
When it comes to foods that deer enjoy, they will probably prefer corn. Soybean leaves are especially popular in early fall. Then, when the foliage turns yellow, deer will move on to other food sources. Beechnuts are also a staple food for deer in areas where there are no oak trees or acorn crops. And for those in northern regions, you can provide your deer with acorns.
Supplemental feeding is also important in the summer. Even if your deer are not eating much, you should still provide them with high-quality protein and fat. Ensure that they are not too hungry or have an illness before you feed them supplemental feeds. Mineral supplements will also be used during the summer months. It’s important to refresh them at least once to maintain their nutrient levels. A deer’s diet needs to transition from high-protein summer feed to a low-protein diet that contains more carbohydrates.
Another way to feed deer is by providing them with fruits and vegetables. These foods can vary in taste, but deer usually prefer green vegetation over hard and crunchy ones. They also eat grass in summer. They are primarily browsers, so the best fruits and vegetables to feed deer are those that have softer stems. But you should always remember to add plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables to attract them to your yard.
While hunting for a mast in the winter is a great way to increase your odds of catching a deer, you should also be aware of the importance of soft mast during the summer months. These plants provide the deer with carbohydrates during this period of time and most of the trees that produce soft mast drop their fruits during the late summer months. Deer during the late summer months are often very stressed in terms of nutrition, so this is an excellent time to plant shrubs or trees that produce soft mast.
If you hunt in the early summer or early fall, you will be hunting for green food sources. When these foods turn red, you should be ready to take action. Make sure you map out your hunting strategy before going to the woods. By doing so, you will avoid wandering aimlessly looking for a deer. If you plan ahead of time, you can also make sure you’re not wandering aimlessly in the woods, hoping to find a deer that has moved.
When the summer is over, whitetails will be starting their autumn foraging. They will begin to forage on fruiting trees, and the first few fall acorns will fall. When this time comes, you can also look for other food sources that contain carbohydrates, such as hickories. Many other types of trees contain nuts, including buckeye, walnut, and beechnut. They’ll also consume tasty and nutritious acorns.
In order to provide a plentiful and balanced food supply to whitetails, you should plant multiple species of oak trees. These trees produce acorns throughout the year. Other hard mast-producing trees can also be planted for the deer’s benefit. Beech, chestnut, and hickory trees are among the most popular foods for deer. In many parts of North America, apples and pears are excellent sources of the soft mast.
While corn is one of the most popular crops to feed deer in the summer months, you should be aware that it may cause health problems for them. Deer naturally prefer higher protein and fiber sources, and corn is not a great source of these nutrients. Deer are more likely to eat other types of vegetable and fruit scraps, such as beans and greens, which are high in protein and fiber. Adding deer protein supplements to their diets may improve their health and help them recover from the cold winter months.
If you want to provide your deer with a nutritious meal, you can also mix it with other types of food, such as carrots, onions, and other vegetables. You should be sure to follow all local regulations and use attractants to make the food more appealing to the deer. Corn, while not the best choice, is an excellent supplement to any feeding plan. If you don’t have time for deer-specific food pellets, you can try using corn to feed deer in the summer instead.
Feeding deer corn in summer is a great way to make them more interested in your property. Corn is a great source of energy for deer, which is why it is so popular among hunters. However, feeding deer only corn in the summer is not a good idea because it can cause acidosis in deer. A healthy diet will include plenty of other foods, but feeding deer only corn during the summer months is not a good idea.
In addition to having the highest energy content of any food, corn can cause problems with the digestive system of deer. It changes the environment of the rumen, turning it acidic and destroying the microbes that are necessary for digestion. Too much corn may cause deer to stop eating altogether or exhibit lethargic behavior. Corn is also a poor source of protein. If you want to feed your deer corn, consider buying it in rural gas stations.