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#7034883 - 01/11/18 06:16 PM Question about deer hunting and leasing my pasture for cattle
alsaenz Offline
Outdoorsman

Registered: 02/17/15
Posts: 86
I think I have the answer from this thread, but I'd like everyone's feedback about whether I should lease my pasture for cattle.

Context:

I have 114 acres, about 60 in pasture (cross-fenced into two 30 acres sections), the rest woods. One neighbor is 4500 acres, no cattle. One neighbor is 1,000 acres, and I've only ever seen about 5 cattle at a time on his place. Two other neighbors are about 200 acres each, and only one of those has cattle (about 3).

A friend of mine asked me if I'd be open to him leasing my pasture (he has about 12-15 head). He's a great guy, and his family has lived and owned land in the area for a few generations. The way my land is set up, I have one tower blind, and the feeder is about 40 yards on the other side of the pasture fence, so cattle, in theory, wouldn't be able to get to it. In other words, the feeder is on the edge of the woods that borders the pasture. I've only owned the place for about two years, and this was the first deer season I've taken anything (an 8-point). Overall, I'm pleased with the deer I've seen from the blind and on camera--no monsters, but a good handful of up-and-coming bucks, and 6-8 doe any given morning or evening. This year seems to be a bit richer than last, but I've been feeding all year, so that may explain it.

For years, we would buy hunts, and even with our land now, I still like to take my boys out to west or north Texas, so we don't put a lot of hunting pressure on our land. Neighbors hunt, and I don't know for sure, but I don't get the feeling that anyone is overhunting (just based on the number of shots I tend to hear--or not hear--in the mornings and evenings.

One last thing: I really don't need the money. My friend just said it would be a huge help to him as he is always looking for land near his ranch to rotate his cattle onto. In addition to paying me per acre, he also said he would take care of any fence work that needed to be done or any other maintenance associated with the animals.

Given all the above, what should I be thinking about as I decide whether to move forward with extending him a lease?

Thanks for the feedback.

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#7034905 - 01/11/18 06:32 PM Re: Question about deer hunting and leasing my pasture for cattle [Re: alsaenz]
JTS Offline
Bird Dog

Registered: 12/06/12
Posts: 420
Loc: Wichita Co.
I wouldn't lease it to him, it will be a hassle for you and if he starts to overgraze it you will be pissed at him and your land will suffer. Now if he needed a place to keep a few cows during the summer only I would be open to that with the ability to ask him to remove them at the first sign of overgrazing.

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#7034953 - 01/11/18 07:09 PM Re: Question about deer hunting and leasing my pasture for cattle [Re: alsaenz]
Stompy Online   content
Extreme Tracker

Registered: 06/13/10
Posts: 4784
Loc: Breckenridge Tx
I wouldn't lease either, unless he removed them before deer season.
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Cabin Rentals on the ranch for Hubbard Creek Lake

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#7034964 - 01/11/18 07:15 PM Re: Question about deer hunting and leasing my pasture for cattle [Re: alsaenz]
Rustler Online   content
Extreme Tracker

Registered: 03/01/07
Posts: 3558
Loc: Carrollton/ Young, Blanco coun...
Depends on what area the property is in, makes a big difference in acres per AU.
Most places I lease I wouldn't put 12-15 on 114 acres for more than brief periods with reasonable pasture rest between on periods.

If he's talking about a strict rotation type lease, a specified amount of head, number of days and time of pasture rest, it could be a good deal for both.
If he wants year around access for his cattle as he see's fit,, nope.

You're the LO, you can set / specify / structure anything to your liking in the contract.
Like cattle off Oct 1 ~ Feb 1 or no more than x head or x AU, no bulls / aggressive livestock removed immediately at LO request,,, whatever trips your trigger.

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#7035179 - 01/11/18 09:35 PM Re: Question about deer hunting and leasing my pasture for cattle [Re: alsaenz]
Texas Dan Online   content
THF Celebrity

Registered: 07/28/08
Posts: 12690
One of the tracts that I hunt is roughly 70 acres of pasture and 30 acres of hardwood? The landowner runs about 20 head of cattle on it. Without any feeders and food plots, I saw more deer on that 30 acres this year than I did on another, heavily wooded 100 acre tract that has both a food plot and feeder on it. After looking at satellite images, I found several pinch points that made it a natural deer highway to and from adjacent properties. I placed stands at these pinch points and saw deer on 90% of the hunts.
_________________________
Dan,

Spring, Texas

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#7035224 - 01/11/18 10:13 PM Re: Question about deer hunting and leasing my pasture for cattle [Re: alsaenz]
ImBillT Offline
Bird Dog

Registered: 10/25/13
Posts: 316
I usually see whitetails avoid cattle, and mule deer eating right in the middle of them. The whitetails donít leave though, they just eat and sleep where the cattle arenít. Obviously you donít want him damaging your land, but cattle presence on the pasture only and not in the same pasture as your blind and feed really wonít bother you. If anything, itíll push deer to your area because theyíll avoid the cattle in the opposite enclosure and the cattle will reduce forage in that pasture as well. Your feeder and pasture without cattle will become preferred. Not to mention heís youíre friend and a great guy. Friends help each other out. Tell him that you want to help and would be happy for him to lease your pasture, and then simply voice any concerns you have regarding overgrazing and the amount of time you think cattle should be in the pasture without giving it a rest. Either your preferences will be fine with him and heíll lease the land from and be very greatful to have you as a friend, or heíll realize that heís better off putting his cattle somewhere else and heíll still be greatful to have you as a friend for offering to let him graze his cattle even when you had concerns about it.


Edited by ImBillT (01/11/18 10:15 PM)

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#7035312 - 01/12/18 06:05 AM Re: Question about deer hunting and leasing my pasture for cattle [Re: alsaenz]
Tff caribou Online   content
Extreme Tracker

Registered: 08/27/12
Posts: 3574
Loc: Watauga, TX
If you donít need the money, donít lease it. Other peopleís cows are annoying to have around in my experience.
_________________________
The very atmosphere of firearms anywhere and everywhere restrains evil interference. -George Washington

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#7035375 - 01/12/18 07:20 AM Re: Question about deer hunting and leasing my pasture for cattle [Re: alsaenz]
Mr. T. Offline
Veteran Tracker

Registered: 11/05/14
Posts: 2127
Loc: Hunt in Cass County, live in T...
I did the same thing but it was not for a friend just someone who need a little bit more land. and it worked out, But he was only allowed to have the cattle on the property from March 1st to October 1st. I don't bow hunt so it worked for me.
_________________________
Ski cabin rental in Pagosa Springs.
www.pagosaspringscabin.com

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#7035412 - 01/12/18 07:59 AM Re: Question about deer hunting and leasing my pasture for cattle [Re: alsaenz]
alsaenz Offline
Outdoorsman

Registered: 02/17/15
Posts: 86
Thanks for the feedback, everyone. Very helpful. I was thinking about doing a six-month type of thing. I'm guessing that if we did something like March 1 through August 31, it wouldn't affect deer patterns through the actual season then (I don't bow hunt)?

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#7035422 - 01/12/18 08:03 AM Re: Question about deer hunting and leasing my pasture for cattle [Re: alsaenz]
Western Online   content
THF Celebrity

Registered: 04/20/11
Posts: 25673
Loc: Wise County Texas
I guess I see it differently than many, IMO there could be a few advantages.

If the land was under AG exemption, having cattle on it may allow you to keep it, or get it. This could allow you to pursue a wildlife exemption down the road if you want to go that route.

You didn't say if it was improved pasture, or native range, but you may be able to have him plant the 30 acres near the trees on his dime with oats/wheat each fall if he has access to a no till drill (no cost to you). If the cows are off by say Sept-March, you will have oats to hunt over, deer will have extra browse and he can turn the cows on it early to clean it off.

You will have your fences looked after, but more importantly, extra eyes helping keep watch over your property.

If the fella is a good guy, and you treat him in kind, this could be the most advantages piece of the deal as far as community, word gets around pretty quick in rural communities and the more folks that like you there is very advantages for many reasons.

You can make the deal that doesn't make you a dime per se, but it could save you some, improve your land and work in your favor as well.
_________________________
Friends don't let Friends drink and post.......

The first 5 day's after the weekend, are the hardest....

Dennis


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#7035435 - 01/12/18 08:12 AM Re: Question about deer hunting and leasing my pasture for cattle [Re: Western]
don k Offline
THF Celebrity

Registered: 08/27/08
Posts: 10143
Loc: Bandera, Tx
Originally Posted By: Western
I guess I see it differently than many, IMO there could be a few advantages.

If the land was under AG exemption, having cattle on it may allow you to keep it, or get it. This could allow you to pursue a wildlife exemption down the road if you want to go that route.

You didn't say if it was improved pasture, or native range, but you may be able to have him plant the 30 acres near the trees on his dime with oats/wheat each fall if he has access to a no till drill (no cost to you). If the cows are off by say Sept-March, you will have oats to hunt over, deer will have extra browse and he can turn the cows on it early to clean it off.

You will have your fences looked after, but more importantly, extra eyes helping keep watch over your property.

If the fella is a good guy, and you treat him in kind, this could be the most advantages piece of the deal as far as community, word gets around pretty quick in rural communities and the more folks that like you there is very advantages for many reasons.

You can make the deal that doesn't make you a dime per se, but it could save you some, improve your land and work in your favor as well.
I agree with Western. From what I have seen is that Deer do better on pasture that has a few cattle on it. The cattle will eat down the taller grass so the deer can get to some of the forbs they could not get to before. As long as it is not over grazed it should be good.
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#7035461 - 01/12/18 08:28 AM Re: Question about deer hunting and leasing my pasture for cattle [Re: alsaenz]
CenTex Online   content
Tracker

Registered: 01/12/10
Posts: 682
Loc: Waco
Let him put cattle on your place in exchange for hunting rights on his place.

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#7035503 - 01/12/18 08:46 AM Re: Question about deer hunting and leasing my pasture for cattle [Re: CenTex]
alsaenz Offline
Outdoorsman

Registered: 02/17/15
Posts: 86
Originally Posted By: CenTex
Let him put cattle on your place in exchange for hunting rights on his place.
Hadn't even thought of that. Great idea.

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#7035513 - 01/12/18 08:51 AM Re: Question about deer hunting and leasing my pasture for cattle [Re: don k]
alsaenz Offline
Outdoorsman

Registered: 02/17/15
Posts: 86
Originally Posted By: don k
Originally Posted By: Western
I guess I see it differently than many, IMO there could be a few advantages.

If the land was under AG exemption, having cattle on it may allow you to keep it, or get it. This could allow you to pursue a wildlife exemption down the road if you want to go that route.

You didn't say if it was improved pasture, or native range, but you may be able to have him plant the 30 acres near the trees on his dime with oats/wheat each fall if he has access to a no till drill (no cost to you). If the cows are off by say Sept-March, you will have oats to hunt over, deer will have extra browse and he can turn the cows on it early to clean it off.

You will have your fences looked after, but more importantly, extra eyes helping keep watch over your property.

If the fella is a good guy, and you treat him in kind, this could be the most advantages piece of the deal as far as community, word gets around pretty quick in rural communities and the more folks that like you there is very advantages for many reasons.

You can make the deal that doesn't make you a dime per se, but it could save you some, improve your land and work in your favor as well.
I agree with Western. From what I have seen is that Deer do better on pasture that has a few cattle on it. The cattle will eat down the taller grass so the deer can get to some of the forbs they could not get to before. As long as it is not over grazed it should be good.


I do have an ag exemption in place, but I like the idea of being set up for a wildlife exemption later. I have a tractor, but I'll admit that I'm not a huge fan of cutting--I just get bored too quickly after about 10 acres. So most of that 60 acres of pasture is native, with some ragweed, etc. I like the idea of cattle keeping it mowed naturally.

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#7035545 - 01/12/18 09:09 AM Re: Question about deer hunting and leasing my pasture for cattle [Re: alsaenz]
Rustler Online   content
Extreme Tracker

Registered: 03/01/07
Posts: 3558
Loc: Carrollton/ Young, Blanco coun...
I agree with Western & don k.
I own & lease property for grazing my cattle on, my previous post came out a lot more jumbled up than I wanted it to.

Western has seen how I manage a small part of my operation.
Cattle & deer can do very well together, can be one of the better management tools, plus cow poo is the best cover scent known to man and it's free.

In all but 3 of my grazing leases the LO sets their expectations in writing. Some of them have some unique requests.
Just me, no matter how good a guy he is or even a close friend get the basics in writing, sometimes nothing screws up friendships faster than doing business together. Then you both have a paper to look back on when or if anything comes up.




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