How to tell what minerals to use.

Discussion in 'Food Plots & Habitat Improvement' started by Hoytxhunter, Mar 8, 2017.

  1. Hoytxhunter

    Hoytxhunter Weekend Warrior

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    Ok hopefully this isn't beating a dead horse. I know you guys up in the north use minerals for the deer. So I guess what Im looking for is to be educated. Are there certain ones you use depending on the lack of those minerals in the area or do you just use a commercial blend or are there certain ones that the deer are either attracted to or benefit from. Also what would be a good food plot for antler growth as well as something for fall attractant. I might be getting on a lease this year (fingers crossed) and I was wondering what all I can do to either maintain or better what it it has. Thanks for any info you may have to offer.
     
  2. copperhead

    copperhead Grizzled Veteran

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    This is a tough subject. For me some minerals work great in some areas but deer won't touch them somewhere else. Deer seem to prefer mineral mixes that are high in salt content because minerals are kinda bitter. I personally like Antler King Apple Burst minerals but you might have to try a few brands to get the one your deer like. What I have done in the past is mix livestock salt in with the mineral and then slowly over time remove the salt from the mix. After that they seemed to figure out they need/like it.
     
  3. Hoytxhunter

    Hoytxhunter Weekend Warrior

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    Thanks for the info. Ill look around or order some maybe 2 or 3 different kinds and make multiple spots and put some cameras on them to see what happens.
     
  4. Team Haastyle

    Team Haastyle Weekend Warrior

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    For selection of mineral, my biggest word of advice is READ THE LABEL! Too many mineral products on the market contain an obscene amount of salt in their product. All this does is allow for a larger amount of product to be made for a cheaper initial cost. Event though salt is essential for the salt/potassium exchange in the blood stream, it is not needed in the high levels many of these products have in them. The main items I look for in my mineral products are Calcium, Phosphorus, Potassium, Selenium, Copper, Magnesium, and many, many more but those are the main ones I look at percentages on. The best two products I have found being sold on the market are Grandpa Ray Outdoors and Lucky Buck. Monster Raxx was also a very good one, but currently unavailable for retail purchase. I do like what you said though regarding trying 2-3 different kinds. I tell all of my clients that deer are just as picky as a little kid when it comes to food and minerals. Trial and error of different types will help you determine what they like and don't like. Good luck!
     
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  5. Siman/OH

    Siman/OH Legendary Woodsman

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    Just avoid the high salt products. YES, they will ATTRACT deer. But it doesn't benefit them in any way.

    Ive used Producers Pride General Mineral for years. Cheap 50lb bags and i get alot of deer activity. I like to believe it helps the deer, but ill never really know.
     
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  6. MGH_PA

    MGH_PA Moderator

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    I'm still not sold on the mineral benefits to deer. There have been studies (albeit, old ones), that showed little differentiation in body/antler size provided the two groups had the same diet.

    I did the bag mixes for a long time, but now just mix my own (DiCal, Trace Mineral, and stock salt). They do really hit the salt based mixes (or just plain salt) heavily in the spring/summer because of the sodium deficiency they're running at much of that time of year.

    Agree with the others, don't pay hefty prices for mixes that are primarily salt. You can accomplish the same thing much more inexpensively.
     
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  7. tynimiller

    tynimiller Legendary Woodsman

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    Okay let's break this down with things that are not disputed:

    -Salt is an attractant....and while needed, is never needed in the amount even found in the lower salt products.
    -Minerals are desired and required in a deer's nutritional intake to help form healthy skeletal structure, good quality lactation for does and just overall health. Think like humans, the healthier the stuff you take in is, the healthier your body will be. (notice antlers I didn't even mention).
    -Nothing has been proven without a doubt that minerals will directly add inches and inches onto a buck's head.

    All that said, a further question one must ask before implementing anything is what are you desiring to do? Attract deer for pictures, or attempt to supplement their diets with nutritional value if needed?

    If attracting is all you care about a pile of corn will even suffice, no salt block required...but honestly the 90+% salt stuff like Trophy Rock and others will suffice you perfectly. JUST MAKE SURE LEGAL IN YOUR STATE.

    If you want to attempt to make a nutritional impact for the does and bucks in your area, and don't have unrealistic expectations that you'll grow the next Booner look to the label as Zach stated. Honestly if the product has much more than 40% salt I'd not bother. Monsterraxx was my go to for years, but is no longer simply due to not sold retail wise. I now if I use Mineral use Real World's Maxximizer however other good mixes are out there for sure.
     
    Last edited: Mar 28, 2017
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  8. greatwhitehunter3

    greatwhitehunter3 Grizzled Veteran

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    This is what I do as well.
     
  9. PSE4me

    PSE4me Newb

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    I'm cheap and on a budget, so I made my own mineral mix. I bought a 50lb bag of General Purpose mineral mix and a 50 lb bag of Fine stock salt. (Tractor Supply, less than $20 total). Mixed it 3 parts mineral to 1 part salt in a bucket and poured it on the ground in 4 various places around the farm, and the deer are tearing it up. It has been out for about 3 weeks, and already the deer have wallowed out a hole at all the locations. I did not add any attractant to the mix, and the deer found it just fine; bonus is that other critters don't bother the sites. I figure the deer can't read, and don't know the stuff they are eating didn't have the word "Deer" on the label. Poor folks have poor ways.
     
  10. John adams

    John adams Weekend Warrior

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    I use trophy rock a lot.. also go to the co op and get a 50 pound bag of trace minerals for like 6 bucks. I mix that with corn. but personally I think its all about preference
     
  11. TKP030

    TKP030 Weekend Warrior

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    Read the label of ingredients so you don't end up calling it a mineral lick and all you end up putting out is a mixture of 98% salt. (on of my bigger pet peeves haha). I buy 2) 50lb bags of stock salt and 2) 50 lb bags of cow pasture mineral, read the label and go with the pasture mineral with the lowest salt content and highest calcium and phosphorus since you will be adding in the stock salt later. then I get a 50 lb bag of dried molasses.
    I mix 2) parts stock salt, 2) parts pasture mineral & 1) part molasses. I measure the parts by volume not by weight its easier to mix small batches and the molasses will last longer since it has a larger volume to weight than the other two. All that will get you probably about 225 lb of mineral for roughly $50.
     
  12. JungleJoe

    JungleJoe Weekend Warrior

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    That's what we do and works fine. We use a hand tiller to make em work a bit harder for the camera.

    Sent from my SM-N900V using Tapatalk
     
  13. vermontwhitetail

    vermontwhitetail Die Hard Bowhunter

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    I usually just use mineral blocks sold for horses and cattle in NJ. They seem to work great and are cheeper.
     

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