Articles by Spring Creek Outdoors, LLC

Articles by Spring Creek Outdoors, LLC

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The Magic of the Rut

The Magic of the Rut

September 13, 2016 by

What, exactly, is the rut in whitetail deer and why do hunters enjoy it so much? What causes the normally secretive and elusive mature bucks to temporarily lose their minds and wander out into a wide open field during the hunting season? In this two part series, we will take a deeper look into the science and biology of this incredible, annual, phenomenon hunters call “the rut”.

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The Fall Armyworm

The Fall Armyworm

August 13, 2016 by

Attention all farmers, ranchers, and deer hunters. The fall armyworms are here once again and causing problems for everyone. Damaging populations of the pests have been reported in north, central, and south Texas again this year, especially on newly established small grain pastures (food plots) and established bermudagrass fields.

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The Diverse Trail Camera

The Diverse Trail Camera

July 06, 2016 by

The foundation of any wildlife management program involves collecting survey data. Survey data may be collected in a variety of ways but consistency and trends are critical.

With recent advances in technology, the use of infrared-triggered cameras (trail cameras) may be used as an acceptable form of gathering such data, especially on properties that may not be conducive to spotlight or helicopter surveys. These devices have become an invaluable tool in the deer manager’s toolkit.

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Rut Hunting, Your Management Window

Rut Hunting, Your Management Window

June 03, 2016 by

Every deer hunter worth his salt knows that hunting during the rut is likely the best time to harvest a mature buck. Last issue, we explored the mechanics and biology behind the rut and why and how it makes mature bucks do the silly things they do and therefore makes them vulnerable to your weapon of choice. This issue, let’s discuss HOW deer managers can use the rut to their benefit to help them manage their deer herd.

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Quantity vs. Quality

Quantity vs. Quality

May 17, 2016 by

How many times have you heard someone say that they would love to see a pasture full of 180” deer? As a private consulting biologist, I hear it often and usually just nod my head when I hear it. Not that growing 180” deer isn’t possible in your pasture, it is very possible. But what may not be possible is producing the proverbial “pasture full” of them.

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Prescribed Burning for Better Wildlife

Prescribed Burning for Better Wildlife

April 21, 2016 by

Wildfire and prescribed fire are similar to illegal drugs and prescription drugs. The first can destroy your home and possibly kill you while the second will improve your wildlife habitat and cure your ailments. Wildfires and illegal drugs carry heavy negative impacts while prescribed fire and prescription drugs carry positive and healing impacts.

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Predator Control and How it Affects Your Hunting Success

Predator Control and How it Affects Your Hunting Success

April 13, 2016 by

Hunters, managers and landowners all have an interest in raising baby animals. Whether it be calves, lambs, quail chicks, turkey poults, or deer fawns, the end result is the same—without babies you will not have adults. Sounds pretty simple and easy doesn’t it? Don’t be fooled. This article is to remind you of the importance of predator control for the sake of wildlife management.

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Now What?

Now What?

January 13, 2016 by

At this time of year, I get many inquiries about what projects there are to help the deer and deer hunting for the fall.  Deer season and growing big antlers happens in a small percentage of the available time and you have to work smart and hard when the time comes. And now is the time.

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Natural Mortality, What is it?

Natural Mortality, What is it?

November 13, 2015 by

Death by Mother Nature–by “natural causes”– accidental death, death caused by something other than your weapon, that is what it is. Shooting at and wounding a deer that eventually dies from the wounds is not natural mortality. Starvation, flooding, fighting, predation, birthing complications, drought, snake bites, hung in fences and car accidents are examples of natural mortality.

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My First Ground Blind Hunt with Dad

My First Ground Blind Hunt with Dad

October 13, 2015 by

When I was about knee high to a grasshopper, I was sitting in a ground blind with my dad.  It was one of my first hunts to sit on the ground and not on a board nailed in the limbs of a tree.  I enjoyed it very much because I could see the critters better, draw in the dirt and sharpen a stick with my pocketknife.

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Management

Management

October 03, 2015 by

We have all heard and probably used the word management when referring to a ranch or a hunting scenario. I know I see and hear it in almost every article, magazine ad and ranch description. But I also make my living physically managing ranches and I am here to say that this term is often used, abused and misused!

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Livestock Management for Wildlife Production

Livestock Management for Wildlife Production

September 15, 2015 by

Grazing management is the planned manipulation of livestock numbers and grazing intensities to increase food, cover, or improve structure in the habitat of selected species. Grazing management includes kind and class of livestock grazed, determination and adjustment of stocking rates, implementation of a grazing system that provides planned periodic rest for pastures by controlling grazing intensity and durations, and/or excluding livestock from sensitive areas to prevent trampling, allowing for vegetative recovery, or eliminating competition for food and cover. Planned deferments can be short or long term, depending on the conditions. Seasonal stocker operations may also be appropriate to manipulate habitat.

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Coyote Management & Recommendations

Coyote Management & Recommendations

August 13, 2015 by

Canis latrans are members of the dog family, with adults weighing 20-40 pounds.  They prey on a wide variety of animals including rodents, rabbits, deer, game birds and livestock.  They also consume vegetation such as prickly pear apples, mesquite beans and persimmons; and readily consume corn and protein feed meant for deer.

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Antler Growth 101

Antler Growth 101

August 11, 2015 by

Who out there can honestly say that deer antlers don’t get them excited? Whether we manage deer as a profession or a passion, growing bucks with the big antlers is on our minds somewhere down the line. From the earliest drawings of our ancestors on cave walls, we have always had a fascination with antlers–their size, their shape, their oddities, their growth. Why else would we get up well before daylight and brave the harsh elements to pursue antlers and their owners?

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Deer Survey: A Basic Requirement

Deer Survey: A Basic Requirement

April 16, 2015 by

Deer surveys come in many forms, but it is up to the individual manager to decide which method is best suited for the particular property and needs. Habitat type, topography, expense, and vegetation density are primary factors influencing the decision as to the type of census one should use.

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