Deer Trough Feeder: Benefits and Risks

Feed Trough

A deer trough feeder is simple piece of farm equipment that is often used to distribute food for different animals located in a central area. Most farms would have one or two, sometimes more, of these feeding implements to support the wide array of animals that they have. A feed trough not only ensures that every animal gets their share of food, but automatic feeders make sure that food is delivered when needed.

Many hunters, farming industries and even sporting events have been using this simple feeding invention and a few have adapted it into their daily operations as well. A fine example of this is a deer trough.

Benefits of a Deer Trough Feeder

Hunters and outdoor enthusiasts have often relied on tracking the location of different animals and stalking their prey before making their move. They will start by adding deer feeder somewhere in the mix makes things easier for hunters to view their prey and serves as a starting ground for all hunting expeditions. But aside from this, here are a few other benefits you might want to think of before installing a feeding trough like this:

  • Helps Make Hunting Sustainable

Having a trough feeders area ensures that wildlife would survive even if there is a drought or if a rampaging wildfire has hit the area. The presence of homemade deer feeders within their feeding grounds also ensure that the animals would not wander far, which would ultimately lead to breeding and a definite growth in their population. They will make deer hunting sustainable as you are providing both the means to renew the population and a way to control within manageable numbers.

  • Feeds Other Animals During Winter

Often seen as a setback because other animals eat the food in the feeder and this scenario also helps ensure the ecosystem remains in balance with the constant presence of smaller or bigger animals no matter what the season. These animals sometimes invite and join with other species into the area which it can effectively help increase the number of animals you will be able hunt during open season as well.

  • Serves as a Communal Spot for Animals

Most animals are a social bunch. Having a feeding area bolsters this behavior and encourages different kinds of animals to join together in the same area, which indirectly means that you will be able track them separately and prepare a plan that can land you not just one kind of game animal per excursion.

  • Makes Hunting Easy for Beginners

Having different animals present at the same time to feed on the feeder helps make hunting easier for new hunters as they don’t have to track the same kind of animals. While it downplays the benefits of tracking and the search for prey in the woods, it’s an easy introduction into an ancient sport as a great way of sustaining the culture, ensuring that hunting will continue.

Where to Place a Feed Trough

After you have decided how to build game feeders and placed them across your hunting area, it’s important to take note of where you keep them so they are more effective in gathering animals to your game feeders.

Ideally, a feed trough location can be placed around the edge of the wooded area or close to the edge of an open field. Some hunters originally posted the feed trough off the ground in an area where a clean shot may be accomplished. But it depends on the materials, number of lag bolts, shape and design that was used when building the feeder. The height of the roof should be designed so that they may be seen from one or two stands.

This kind of homemade deer feeder location is ideal for the following reasons:

  • Placing feeders out near the edge of the wooded area makes the deer come to you instead of you coming to them and attracting them with feeds.
  • Closer to the outside edge means easier and faster refills without having to worry about leaving too much of a human scent.
  • Clean shots mean a lesser mess and a faster kill as well.

Risks Involved With a Feeder

As with any invention or new technology, a feeding station also might add risks that may make you think twice about using them in your hunting methodologies. The main risks to date involve the following:

  • Negative Impact on Population

A homemade deer feeder helps sustain a population of other game animals, regardless of their size. And the continuous supply of feeds ensures that the population keeps on growing and growing. However, the lack of our control of deer population, due to fewer hunters or just a prolific animal population, might lead to an unexpected population growth which may be harmful to the other flora and fauna species around the area.

  • Invitation of Invasive Species

The feed is not the only item that comes together inside the sacks; other parasitic animals may be hiding inside the seams or in between the grains. Speaking of grains, some grains mixed with the feed can still sprout seedlings which might grow rampant around the area and directly affect the other plant species. While it may be true that deer and other game animals can eradicate these invasive species, we are unsure how long it would take and how resilient and prolific these plant species become in the long run.

  • Possible Disease Outbreak

Corn is one of the main ingredients of animal feeds used in game feeders, and it has always been known that they contain chemicals that are too toxic for wild animals to ingest. These might lead to a pandemic if left unwatched which may eradicate the population and render your hunting ground useless until traces of the disease are erased and a new population of game animals is established.

  • Over feeding and the Reliance on “Human” Feeds

Imagine if you were an animal and someone placed a perpetual machine that produces food that you liked. You’d grow fat too right? This is all good for hunters who are after animal meat, but the reliance on feeds prepared by humans with extra protein and other types of genetically changed grains can permanently alter their diets which ultimately change their genetic makeup. The animals might also over indulge with the free food and end up being overfed and over populated.

An animal feeder is a wise investment but only after your full research of the risks and benefits of having one. A small device such as feed trough does have it’s respective impact to the animal population, regardless if having one is positive or not.

You might like this: Salt Lick for Deer: A Guide for Buying & Using Salt Licks

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