Planting Impoundment... What to plant?

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Planting Impoundment... What to plant?

Postby tigernation » Mon Feb 04, 2013 10:23 am

I recently completed a 12 acre impoundment that can be flooded quickly and easily without much rain (thank you pond). It was completed in Oct, thus too late to be planted. I was wondering what the recommended food source for a NE NC impoundment would be? I was thinking Japanese millet but have heard that chufa is preferred by some. What do yall think?
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Re: Planting Impoundment... What to plant?

Postby mtthomas1127 » Mon Feb 04, 2013 1:33 pm

Was talking with our local GW about this topic last week. His recommendation was chufa. Especially for shallower waters. Turkeys love it too if you are in to that.
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Re: Planting Impoundment... What to plant?

Postby Gaston » Mon Feb 04, 2013 2:04 pm

I always plant either corn or milo, some Jap millet too in a few.
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Re: Planting Impoundment... What to plant?

Postby layoutchase » Mon Feb 04, 2013 6:19 pm

Pintails love soybeans...
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Re: Planting Impoundment... What to plant?

Postby Shurshot » Mon Feb 04, 2013 9:53 pm

Would depend on a number of things, mainly what will be the main type of birds using it?

Corn is always a good thing but can get expensive to plant. Just about everything will eat/use the corn, especially if you can get some native grasses (crab, panic) or smart weeds to grow in conjunction with it.
Chufa can be like cocaine to mallards once they find it. But wouldn't expect your more herbacious ducks such as gadwall and wigeon to use it due to large "nut" it produces that has to be rooted up before eaten.
Jap millet always a good thing, can plant as late as Aug. and be ready in 45-60 days. Biggest problem might be blackbirds eating it out if they find it . . . But ducks really like it and might be the best overall choice.
Browntop millet good too, takes a little dryer soil than Jap but produces nice seed heads.
Chiwapa millet . . . big, hardy stalk that grows much taller than the other millets and can produce one heck of a seed head. Guys in the Central flyway like it alot.
Soy beans are good too but they deteriorate the fastest of any grain crop once wet.

I'd look at doing a mix of Jap, browntop in that all ducks like that combo. But you'll want something "tall" in there, whether it be for food purposes or for shelter because they need that too. Corn works but so would Egyptian wheat. And there are many others.

Have you considered doing moist-soil management? You apparently have a great water supply so you have good re-flood opportunities (a bonus) to control non target species. A field slam full of smartweed, barnyard grass, panic grass, spike rush, sedges, crab grass, etc. would provide excellent food and nutrition for the birds, along with providing a substrate that would promote late season aquatic invertaebrates that arn't as common in agricultural areas. Birds really like/need these in the later part of the season. And a properly managed ms unit will cost about a third of what a corn impoundment will and also can be "manipulated" after the plants all mature. Just some thoughts here . . .

There's lots of great information on several duck chat sites under "Habitat Forum" that I would recommend you visiting. I know I've gotten lots of help from those guys and gained a wealth of knowledge from them because most either do it for a living or have years of experience managing their own properties. Good luck with it!
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Re: Planting Impoundment... What to plant?

Postby TooTall » Mon Feb 04, 2013 10:01 pm

^A lot of good advice above.^

Only thing I can add is to diversify. If you decide to plant, mix it up and see what works best throughout the season. Get up with your local ag extension office and see what they suggest along with the information from your soil samples.
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Re: Planting Impoundment... What to plant?

Postby KAhunter » Tue Feb 05, 2013 12:08 pm

Plant all Corn.
I have done the mixing and trying different stuff. If you want to have the most hunting success, Corn is king. Weedy corn is even better, if you can manage your crop to get good yields and have the added benfit of weed seed. Either way stick with corn. It is by far the best and will draw the birds the best. Dont hunt it more than every 7 to 10 days. Good luck.
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Its always duck season, there is just a long break from february to september.
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