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Old Jun 21st 2015, 09:54 AM   #1
  Jun 2015
  Richland, PA

Hello everybody,*I'm in the planning stages for my first*deer this winter.* I'm starting with excellent genetics but want to keep it very small as I only have a few acres to work with for now.* I'm located about 20 min. west of the Cabelas store in PA.* I've read up and down all over this site as well as many others.* I've watched the last 3 yrs. worth of Deer & Wildlife Stories episodes and started visiting local deer farms.* Even with many hours of reading and research I'm still wanting more practical tips that I can apply right from the start.* My goal is to apply best known practices & to hopefully avoid*making a lot of*costly mistakes.* It's with this in mind that I'm asking for as many replies as possible to the*two following questions:
  1. What is one of the good decisions you made early on in deer farming?
  2. What is one of*the mistakes you made early on?

Thanks to all who take the time to reply,

-Daryl Martin
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Old Jun 21st 2015, 12:34 PM   #2
 zmcgill's Avatar
  Sep 2009
  Utica, PA Venango Co.
1. Have a flexible plan.

2. Probably made lots of mistakes early on, should have found someone early on that could mentor, and learn more hands on from. Things are a lot easier if you can get help from others that have been thru it. You also need to be willing to help others. I basically started with fawns, I wouldn't do that again, I would start with good proven bred doe, or find some one that can breed them to the cross of your choice.
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Old Jun 21st 2015, 01:33 PM   #3
 Bell's Avatar
  Apr 2014
  Greensburg, IN
Can a general cervid farming discussion thread be seen if a non member isn't logged in?
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Old Jun 21st 2015, 06:43 PM   #4
 Wild Rivers Whitetails's Avatar
  Apr 2009
  Northeast Wisconsin

Cervid: Deer Farming
This should be in a members only forum.
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Old Jun 21st 2015, 06:46 PM   #5
 JNEWTON's Avatar
  Jun 2015
  Williamsport, PA
Wild Rivers Whitetails1031251434941016

This should be in a members only forum.

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Old Jun 21st 2015, 07:19 PM   #6
 Bell's Avatar
  Apr 2014
  Greensburg, IN
When I log off I cannot see the general cervid farming discussion thread. Can a non member see it?
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Old Jun 21st 2015, 08:41 PM   #7
 IndependenceRanch's Avatar
  Apr 2009
  Edgar, WI

Cervid: deer

Members only forum means nothing. Anyone can become a member.
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Old Jun 22nd 2015, 03:49 AM   #8
 Whitetail Sanctuary's Avatar
  May 2009
  Chillicothe, Missouri

You should have to have a "Deer Farming Permit" Number to show you OWN deer to even be on this site!


But................In this winey world we live in know..................That "Wouldn't be FAIR"
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Old Jun 22nd 2015, 06:56 AM   #9
  Jan 2014
  Pipe Creek ,Texas

yea your right T&S
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Old Jun 22nd 2015, 07:38 AM   #10
  Jun 2015
  Richland, PA

First let me say that from my perspective as an outsider looking to join your ranks this forum has been tremendously informative and I thank you for that.* As Roger said, the "members only" aspect is mute without some level of verification.* As it stands currently, no-one should post anything they wouldn't also*be willing to*display in the town square.

Back to the initial topic... I'm looking for more pointers (a really long list) of the do's and don'ts you've learned over the years in this business of deer farming.* As O'Reilly would say, keep it pithy.

Thanks again,

-Daryl Martin
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Old Jun 22nd 2015, 08:56 AM   #11
 Antlershed's Avatar
  Apr 2009
  cental Pennsylvania

Cervid: taxidermy
I started with all wooded pens. I would never do that again. Large grassy pens with a few healthy shade trees would be ideal. Deer will browse wooded pens and quickly kill off everything green that they can reach. Grass is tough, and keeps the soil healthier than the bare dirt of an overbrowsed wooded pen.

Figure out what to do with your excess doe fawns now, before they are born. They will be an issue you will face soon, every farm has " awesome" and "amazing" doe fawns for sale each spring and fall, and only so many can be bought. So don't figure on your doe fawns easily selling even with awesome paper work to back them up.that sounds really ugly and negative for me to say.....but I have to be honest, it will be an issue, especially since every single guy I know personally has this problem each year. They can always be harvested and eaten for you and your family, that's what I do and I am not ashamed to admit it.

Talk to the preserve owners in your area now. See what they pay for bucks. It will sting alot less to find out now, versus raising a buck for two years with the assumption he's worth X Amount of dollars, only to find out he's realistically worth thousands less.

Treat fellow farmers with respect. What goes around comes around. In my general area of PA I have met some gentlemen in this business that would do anything to help me, and I would do the same for them. Not just deer things, I am talking life in general. I also got burned by some guys in this area. But guess what happened to some of those guys who were only out to rip off other farmers? They sold out. Because they literally ripped off too many guys and couldn't make it any longer without people to help them. I always tend to give guys a chance, if they wanna rip me off that's fine, they can get me once, but ill make sure they'll never get me twice. I can do that because of advice i got from freinds on this site over the years, which is....I never put more money into this business than I can afford to lose, which is a good way to approach any financial decision.

Despite my comments about the negatives, I can't say enough about the positives. Owning deer is so rewarding, they are beautiful critters. Good luck and have fun.
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Old Jun 22nd 2015, 09:25 AM   #12
 Bell's Avatar
  Apr 2014
  Greensburg, IN
Hope you read my original post before I edited it. Good luck
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Old Jun 22nd 2015, 10:13 AM   #13
 IndependenceRanch's Avatar
  Apr 2009
  Edgar, WI

Cervid: deer
Matt has some good advice above.

I and about every farmer could write a book about the mistakes we have learned from. We could fill a book with what works for us also, however those things may or may not work for your farm.

My best advice is find someone you can TRULY TRUST and who is willing to guide you. Not everyone will guide folks. After all you will be the "competition" at some point. Also helping others get started takes a lot of work, time and patience. The value of having someone to guide you is priceless. But again beware those looking to cash in on a newbie.

Fawns- If you bottle feed don't "protect " them by keeping them inside solid wall areas. Once released into normal pens they don't know what a fence is. While running around playing it gets ugly.

Fence - If your not experienced and don't have the proper equipment hire someone who does. Rebuilding later costs more money in the long run. Also design is important. Look for all possible danger spots that can hurt or kill your deer.

Your not raising cows. They don't react like cows so what seems to make sense to you wont to a deer.

A quality handling area is priceless.

Learn to dart yourself. You don't always have time to call a buddy.

One mans shooter buck is another mans breeder buck. Don't be that guy breeding with shooters.

Treat the venture as a business and not a hobby. You and your family deserve that. Do not let the expenses come out of the pocket to support a hobby.

There is much more could be said but I will end here.

Good luck!
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Old Jun 23rd 2015, 08:30 AM   #14
  Jan 2011
  Houston, Texas

If I had to do over I'd rip up every stitch of grass, put in some degree of irrigation, plant a good stand of clover then install watering system that wouldn't freeze up and then find a good fence builder.** The last thing and easiest thing you should do is buy a deer and it needs to be a 3yo that has had fawns a few times and will be low maintenance.* If it is a for sure good doe I would breed female semen and get some does out of her before I worried about a buck but that's just me.*
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Old Jun 30th 2015, 08:48 PM   #15
  Jun 2015
  Richland, PA

I really appreciate the replies so far.* Thank you to each one.* I understand*everyone's*very busy this time of year but I'm*hoping*some more folks*are willing to*share*the do's & don'ts they've learned over the years.* For what it's worth, I'm an accountant by trade.**I can't take*new clients but just as I'm*leaning on*you all for advice on deer farming, I'd be happy to return the favor in any way I can as a tax guy.**PM me if you have anything you'd like to run by me and I'll be happy to*help (for free of course) in the only way I can at this point.
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