John's Journal...

Green Fields – Why They Work and Why They Don't for Hunting Deer with Dr. Grant Woods

Day 5: Tie Deer’s Bellies to Their Brains with Dr. Grant Woods

Editor’s Note: Planting a green field doesn't guarantee that you'll take a buck on it. Some green fields produce high-quality bucks every season, while other green fields rarely if ever even yield a buck. What factors make for a great green field, and what makes a green field a waste of time and money? To learn the answers to these questions, we've contacted Dr. Grant Woods ( of Reeds Spring, Missouri, an avid hunter and one of the nation's leading deer researchers and animal-nutrition experts.

Click for Larger ViewClick for Larger ViewMaintain a constant food supply in the green field to improve and increase the number of deer that use your green field. "Always keep food on the table for the deer," Woods emphasizes. If the deer have access to highly-nutritious and highly- palatable food every time they visit the green field, they won't stray off your property. Also, when adjacent properties begin to run out of food for deer, the deer on those lands will come to your green fields. The more deer you draw in to your green field, the more feed you must provide for those deer. During extreme winters, when few if any green fields provide enough nutrition for all the deer that come to a green field to eat, you may want to consider using deer feeders, where legal.

Also, if you set up a deer feeder in or next to your green field, you still can attract deer to that green field, even though food doesn't actually grow in the field after deer season. By feeding the deer in the green field after the season, you insure that deer will continue to come to that green field to feed. If a buck thinks "green field" when he feels hungry, he'll more likely utilize that green field during hunting season, which helps tie a buck's belly to his brain. He'll want to eat where he always has eaten and where he always has found plenty of good-tasting, high-quality, nutritious food. Just like we continue to go to a favorite restaurant week after week and year after year, you can teach a deer to follow that same type of pattern.

Click for Larger ViewClick for Larger ViewYou can have great green fields that produce high-quality bucks every season. However, the best green fields require intensive management, the planting of more than one crop and trigger-finger management of the doe population to keep the herd in balance. If the green field becomes a sanctuary and a consistent source of high-quality food, the bucks will frequent the field. By using a deer-management program, you can harvest bigger and better bucks than other hunters in your area and see numerous bucks on every one of your green fields. But, you and the members of your hunting lease must decide how effectively you want to manage your green fields and the number and quality of bucks that you want to produce. The system that Dr. Woods has outlined will produce more and better bucks for you and your hunting club.

Check out the new Kindle eBooks, “Deer and Fixings,” “How to Hunt Deer like a Pro,” “PhD Whitetails” and “How to Hunt Deer Up Close: With Bows, Rifles, Muzzleloaders and Crossbows” by John E. Phillips. Go to, type in the name of the books, and download them to your Kindle and/or download a Kindle app for your iPad, SmartPhone or computer.

About the Author

John Phillips, winner of the 2012 Homer Circle Fishing Award for outstanding fishing writer by the American Sportfishing Association (AMA) and the Professional Outdoor Media Association (POMA), the 2008 Crossbow Communicator of the year and the 2007 Legendary Communicator chosen for induction into the National Fresh Water Hall of Fame, is a freelance writer (over 6,000 magazine articles for about 100 magazines and several thousand newspaper columns published), magazine editor, photographer for print media as well as industry catalogues (over 25,000 photos published), lecturer, outdoor consultant, marketing consultant, book author and daily internet content provider with an overview of the outdoors. Click here for more information and a list of all the books available from John E. Phillips.

Tomorrow: Don’t Shoot Does in Your Green Fields with Dr. Grant Woods

Check back each day this week for more about "Green Fields – Why They Work and Why They Don't for Hunting Deer with Dr. Grant Woods"

Day 1: Why Your Green Fields May Not Produce the Size and Number of Bucks You Expect
Day 2: Don’t Shoot Does in Your Green Fields with Dr. Grant Woods
Day 3: How to Create a Green Field Deer Will Utilize During the Hunting Season with Dr. Grant Woods
Day 4: How Not to Spook Deer from Coming to Your Green Field with Dr. Grant Woods
Day 5: Tie Deer’s Bellies to Their Brains with Dr. Grant Woods

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Entry 694, Day 5