If you’ve ever thought about turning your land into a hunter’s haven, you’re biggest question is likely, “Do I have enough room?” The goods news is that you can start hunting with a few as five acres of open area, but there’s more to it than just a place to shoot.
The amount of land you need for hunting is dependent upon many factors. These include:
- What you want to hunt
- What you’re hunting with (bow, gun, etc.)
- The number of people hunting with you
Deer hunting requires the most amount of land. You need a minimum of 10 acres, but that’s only if you’re a perfect shot. With this little land, you run the risk of the deer running off onto someone else’s property. Deer fencing can keep your target in place, but fencing this small of an area means there is little-to-no chance of increasing the deer population. 50 or more acres is best if you’re rifle hunting and plan to have multiple people with you or expect to host more than one hunt per season. Again, deer fencing (also called game fencing) will help keep your game from escaping. More importantly, fencing a large tract of land establishes boundaries and keeps other hunters and predators away.
The most important factor you have to consider when it comes to turkey hunting is the features of the land. Turkeys need a densely wooded area, water source, and open field. 5 acres is the minimum amount of land for this big game bird. However, you must also consider the spray from your weapon — shotgun pellets can scatter as far as half a mile if you’re using a powerful gun.
Hog hunting picked up attention back in 2004 when a Georgia guide shot and killed an animal that’s been dubbed “Hogzilla” by the locals. If you plan to aim for wild pig, you’ll want to have at least 10 acres and, like with turkey hunting, a body of water. Hogs are often found wallowing in soft earth, mud, and bogs. And in the south, hog hunting is usually a nighttime activity so the more land, the better.
If you don’t already have land, find a real estate agent in your area that specializes in hunting properties. If you’re in the southeast, you won’t have to look far. When viewing potential acquisitions, inspect for signs of wildlife. Deer tracks, scat, and burrows are a good indication that animals abound. Look at the trees. Unhealthy trees won’t support your prey. Ask about surrounding properties, too. Avoid any land in close proximity to commercial or agricultural operations, or that are zoned as such. Finally, ensure you have unobstructed access to your land. This is especially important if you must deal with an easement to get to your hunting base.