Elk Dead from Corn Diet

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by BoneCrusher20, Jan 13, 2020.

  1. BoneCrusher20

    BoneCrusher20 Member

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    Location:
    Central WI
    Hardiness Zone:
    4a
    Found this pretty interesting, as i have some bunny hugger family that they order deer corn in winter by the truck loads, because they are "helping the deer" get through winter. I've tried pointing them in direction of research I've found out there that corn for deer/wildlife outside of squirrels is not good for their diet and actually making them worse off. Deer have been surviving our winters long before came around.

    https://www.jsonline.com/story/spor...er-eating-corn-northern-wisconsin/4429424002/
     
  2. Doe Shooter

    Doe Shooter Active Member

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    Location:
    West -Central Illinois
    Hardiness Zone:
    5
    If they really wanted to help ,they should cut down a tree where the deer could get the buds on the branch tips. Our deer browse alfalfa and honey suckle more than picked corn fields. They are in conservation mode now.
     
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  3. OkieKubota

    OkieKubota Moderator Staff Member

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    Location:
    Northeastern Oklahoma
    Looks like the elk “foundered” due to eating too much corn at one time... I probably am the biggest corn “feeder” in our area feeding several tons per year on 90 acres and I have never seen a deer do this even with an on demand 4 port feeder that I went through 100 lbs a day with. The deer are all catalogued and all are in great shape. In the past 2 years here I have taken the 2 largest bodied bucks I have ever come across in NE Oklahoma timber. I would think one would find many dead deer around unpicked corn fields if this article was a common occurrence...
     
  4. BoneCrusher20

    BoneCrusher20 Member

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    Location:
    Central WI
    Hardiness Zone:
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    I would have to imagine there's a big difference in OK winter to WI winter though...not only in temp difference but length of the winter from when food is available and the diets are different. Hence why i send my honey bees to TX/OK/GA for the winter, as surviving winters does not take near the food demand/ or deal with the scarcity of it. In addition, the reason this is more common in north is the death is due to sudden introduction of corn into a deer's diet. If they are eating corn constantly like the south where it is more readily available and their body never shifts over to a true winter browse diet it would not be a problem. I guess i hear about it more in our area, probably not a concern for a lot of states, but not first time I've heard of it especially when we get real cold stretches people start putting out large amounts of corn.
     
  5. DRandall90

    DRandall90 Member

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    Location:
    Minnesota
    Hardiness Zone:
    3
    In the north, if you're going to supplemental feed deer during the winter, you need to either drop tree tops to deer level or use oats, which are more digestible in winter for deer, since the gut bacteria to process them is still being produced.
     
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  6. DRandall90

    DRandall90 Member

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    Location:
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    Hardiness Zone:
    3
    I should also add, it's probably far more valuable to keep trails groomed and snow packed on snowmobile/ATV trails in large yarding areas than it is to supplemental feed. If they can't get to food easily, or escape predators, that's more deadly than not having supplemental feed.
     
  7. BoneCrusher20

    BoneCrusher20 Member

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    Location:
    Central WI
    Hardiness Zone:
    4a
    Those groomed trails also make perfect spots for yote snare traps!
     

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