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Growing Big Bucks

There’s no secret to growing big bucks on your hunting tract. The key to big antlers is time. The most important thing a hunter can do to ensure large racked bucks on their property is to show restraint. You must pass on the 2.5 and 3.5-year-old bucks if you want to harvest mature animals. Between 4.5 and 7.5 years of age is when all the antler magic happens. The reasoning behind this is that the nutrition the animal consumes for the first few years of his life goes mainly toward his body mass and skeleton. Once fully developed at around the age of 4, a buck will begin putting more growth into antlers. Milo Hansen’s world record whitetail was estimated to be 4.5 years old.

If you regularly harvest does on your property, make certain you don’t pull the trigger on a button buck. He may grow up to be the next state or world record whitetail. Let the young bucks, 1 to 3 year olds go, and soon you’ll be growing and holding mature bucks on your property.

Next to age, the next most important variable is nutrition. An early season protein source will help you grow bigger deer. Coming out of winter, bucks and does need high quality nutrition. Normally seed crops do not provide benefit to deer until May or June. This means you can get a jump on antler growth in the spring by planting food plots. One of the better high protein food sources a hunter can plant is clover. Clover greens up very early and provides nutrition nearly year-round. A good clover to plant on your property is Imperial Whitetail Clover.

Looking for your own land to grow big bucks? South Carolina has it! A great climate, liberal bag limits and an ever growing QDMA mentality ensures a healthy deer herd. You can turn your dreams to reality in South Carolina.