Food Plot 1 - Four different Soybean varieties
Utilization based on game camera survey on this crop choice + evidence of use
This is a big plot at 14 acres and I decided to plant all of it in soybeans. The plot was never harvested - I left it standing and will disk it under in the spring. I planted four different varieties, one in each bin of my 4-row Deere 7000 Conservation planter. Bin 1 - Eagle Big Fellow, Bin 2 - Eagle Mgrs. Mix, Bin 3 - Co-op Ag beans, and Bin 4 - Hankcock Buck Beans. The plot was fertilized according to soil test and planted the first week of June.
Activity was strong from emergence until dry down when the leaves fell off around mid October. Then the plot activity dipped until first week of December and steadily climbed into the winter. During the cold temps, utilization was ridiculous with over 100 deer in the plot every evening. The four varieties were not equally utilized, however. The most attractive was the Hancock Buck Beans, followed by the Ag beans, then the Eagle Managers Mix and finally the Eagle Big Fellow. The Hancock and Ag beans were preferred at least 3/1 over the Eagle varieties. Both for green utilization and bean utilization. My top five bucks were in the plot nonstop until October then they showed up occassionally during the rut. By late season all but one of my top bucks had vanished. No idea if they were killed or just elsewhere.
I love soybeans and had no idea what to expect regarding utilization. So I planted the entire 18 acres in beans. I could have cut that in half, and will next year. It's currently March 13th and I still have 40% of my beans standing - mostly the Eagle varieties since the Hancock and Ag beans are preferred. Next year I will drop the Eagles out of my rotation and go heavier on Ag and Hancock beans.
Plot Photo (Macro)
Plot Photo (Micro)
Trail Cam Photo - brought to you by Moultrie