south dakota game, fish and parks offers brood mix

GFP is making a push to enroll private landowners in our food plot program, and to promote pollinating habitat through the use of our brood mix. Natural pollinator habitats can be difficult to manage for and are often a tough sell to private landowners. Through the GFP food plot program, we are once again trying to promote the use of annual pollinator plots.

Traditional food plots, such as corn and sorghum, typically provide winter food for wildlife, but they lack flowering plants that attract insects. Insects are key components in the lifecycles of pheasants, grouse, and other upland nesting birds. When planted to our brood mix, food plots become “insect buffets” throughout the spring and summer, and also provide grain and forage value during winter months.

The brood mix is an annual mixture of cover crop species designed to flower from spring through fall and then produce seed for wildlife forage during the winter months. By flowering, the brood mix provides pollinator habitat that traditional corn/sorghum food plots lack. Pollinating insects, such as bees, leaf hoppers, butterflies, moths and ants thrive in areas with flowering, broadleaf plants. Insects comprise nearly 100 percent of a pheasant chick’s diet, making habitats for pheasant chicks to forage a key component of pheasant production.

Every spring we provide cooperators with free seed (corn, sorghum, and brood mix), as well as a $20/acre payment for their food plot acres. All of our current food plot cooperators were sent a letter highlighting the value of flowering plants and the brood mix we’re offering.

Our food plot program is available to any private landowners who do not charge for hunting access. Landowners can receive free brood plot mix, corn or sorghum seed to plant, plus receive a payment to help offset planting costs. If you have anyone interested in signing up please have them contact Brian Pauly directly (605-353-7185) or Matt Grunig (605-353-6699).