You may be wondering when do deer stop using mineral lick. The answer largely depends on the type of lick you’re using. There are two basic types of licks: Natural and man-made. Besides this, you need to consider seasonal needs and the differences in antler and body size between supplemented and unsupplemented deer. Here are some tips to help you make an educated decision.
One question you may be asking is, “When do deer stop using mineral licks?” The answer may vary depending on the season. In the spring and early summer, when the grasses start to green up, deer are on the lookout for food sources. This means deer may use mineral licks less often during the colder months. However, if you want to increase your deer’s mineral intake, winter is the best time to freshen mineral sites.
If you have a new lick, you should wait a couple weeks before digging it. A mature buck will generally not stop using a mineral lick for at least 10 days before hunting season, so wait a few weeks and try digging it a little earlier if you have any fears the new presence will hinder his movement. Also, be prepared for a change in habitat. The changes will affect the buck’s core area, which he uses to keep himself warm and moist.
Mineral licks should be installed before rain so that deer have a long time to use them. In addition to increasing deer activity, rain can help the minerals soak into the ground. Then, be prepared for some refilling. A man-made mineral lick, especially one placed in an open field, can easily become a pond during heavy rain. If the deer don’t find it, you can use Nutra Deer Antler Builder to replace the salt in the lick.
If you don’t want to replace mineral blocks, you can use artificial salt licks instead. These licks are often placed near feeding areas, such as food plots, and look very natural. You can even buy artificial salt licks and make them look natural. Depending on the area where you want to attract deer, you can add mineral blocks to attract them year-round. There are a few things to remember about artificial salt licks.
Man-made mineral licks
Deer never really stop using man-made mineral licks. They are extremely beneficial to deer, and the activity around them typically occurs in the late winter and early spring when deer are trying to put on weight and recover from the long winter. However, deer will also come to mineral licks in late summer, during which they are finishing their racks. While they may be far away from a mineral lick, deer can smell salt for miles and will continue to visit it if it can.
While it may take some time for deer to find a salt lick, they will soon start digging a hole to visit it. These holes will grow bigger and larger over time. The next step in keeping deer away from your mineral licks is to remove the scent from yourself and the area around it. Wear rubber-bottomed boots and spray clothing with scent-removal products before going into the area. If possible, try to visit the lick during midday hours.
While it’s true that deer are drawn to salty mineral licks in the spring and summer, they rarely use them in the winter. Although deer do need calcium and phosphorous for growing antlers, the does need them to produce fawns and survive pregnancy. Minerals are vital for the overall health of animals, enhancing reproduction and digestion. Natural mineral licks are formed in heavy soil.
Studies have shown that CWD is spread through the soil of mineral licks, and feces are a major source of the disease. Studies have shown that the disease is more likely to be spread to humans if exposed to feces. Therefore, managing deer use of mineral licks in an area where deer are found is essential to controlling CWD outbreaks.
One of the best ways to increase the chances of success when hunting is to use mineral blocks near food plots, bedding areas, and watering holes. Deer tend to prefer licks near water sources, cover, and secondary foods. Deer will not use mineral sites near roads or fences, but they should be placed in areas where deer can travel freely during the day. If you want to attract more deer to your area, place mineral blocks near food plots and bedding areas.
It is important to understand that setting up a mineral lick is considered baiting in most jurisdictions, so you should check local rules before setting up a lick. Most mineral licks are summer or spring feeding areas, so they will not be in the same location when hunting season starts. To avoid attracting deer, set up a mineral lick near a food plot. Bucks will frequently stop by and nibble the minerals before entering the food plot.
While deer rarely visit mineral licks during hunting seasons, these natural areas are crucial to a buck’s health and the growth of his antlers. Likewise, does require these minerals during the months of gestation and nursing a fawn. Besides enhancing antler growth and fawn development, mineral licks provide a variety of benefits to deer.
Unlike humans, deer require different amounts of minerals during different seasons. Spring and early summer are the two most critical times for mineral requirements, while winter and fall are less important. This is because deer consume more vegetation with high water content during spring and summer, so they need additional minerals to stay healthy. Hunting enthusiasts often make the connection between deer and salt and buy mineral blocks for the deer.
If you are worried that your deer are not obtaining enough sodium, the best thing you can do is to set up a mineral lick before the rainy season. The water will help the minerals soak into the soil, extending the lifespan of your mineral licks. In addition, deer tend to lick and chew on salt, which is harmful to them. However, by following these guidelines, you can make your mineral licks less attractive to deer.
While hunting in these seasons is often rewarding, it’s also important to set up your mineral site in a place where deer frequent. Mineral sites should be placed near a food plot or water hole. The mineral blocks will keep the deer thirsty and encourage them to seek out freshwater sources. Remember to place mineral blocks away from fences and other sources of human activity, and in an area where deer can move easily.
Detecting differences in body and antler size between unsupplemented and supplemented deer
In South Texas, white-tailed deer can be assigned to age classes with a high degree of accuracy. While the study found no statistically significant differences in body and antler size, researchers did find differences in the composition of bones between supplemented and unsupplemented deer. Although these differences did not reach statistical significance, the results point to the fact that different diets might lead to a reduction in antler size.
One classic study examined mineral requirements in deer. Researchers at Penn State University observed differences in yearling buck antler development when fed a diet deficient in magnesium and calcium. These deer were also fed a diet low in potassium and calcium. However, these deer showed no difference at 2.5 years of age. The researchers concluded that deer may require additional minerals to increase antler growth, but the amount of salt is less important.
When comparing supplemented and unsupplemented deer, the number of points on antlers was found to have the lowest trait repeatability, while the other characters were most closely correlated. Because the antlers are not a determinant of overall body and antler size, visual appearance may not be an appropriate indicator. White-tailed deer with eight to ten antler points are visually similar to one another.
The number of points on antlers and spread between main beams were measured. The main beam length and spread of antlers had the highest repeatability. Another study examined antler size in supplemented deer. They used the Boone and Crockett system, which is widely used in North America. The measurements were taken with a metal tape.
Despite the negative association between heritability and repeatability, this study suggests that supplementation and diets have a direct impact on antler size. It is important to test the hypothesis that supplemented deer allocate more resources toward their main antler characteristics. The study is supported by empirical observations in wild populations. Although the study has limitations, it offers new opportunities to study the effects of supplementation on the development of antler traits.