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Clearing trails in woods

Old 08-16-2011, 06:20 PM
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Default Clearing trails in woods

Just curious if anyone has used round up or other types of weed killers to clear walking trails, stand sites, etc... in the woods. and what effect its had on the deer and other wildlife?
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Old 08-16-2011, 06:26 PM
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I wouldn't want to use weedkillers in the woods. It could screw up the wildlife...and I don't know what effect it would have on them if they ate it...

Just use brush hogs/pole saws/etc.
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Old 08-16-2011, 07:09 PM
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ive used a weedeater,tractor & bush hog, bobcat, machette, atv and some rakes to make trails. start out finding a spot right after hunting season goes out then take a atv and make a trail then start cutting down trees that are in my way then use the bush hog or bobcat to clear the trail. then come next year it will be clear except some weeds but the weedeater & rakes takes care of that. havent had any problem with deer activity, actually i found they like to walk my trail, but i also havent killed any mature bucks near these sites, but plenty of does and smaller bucks visit often.. good luck with your trails and good luck this season
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Old 08-16-2011, 09:38 PM
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someone mentioned salt for permanent trails...
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Old 08-17-2011, 02:06 AM
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It seems to me that once you snip the off brush and small trees to create the trail, all that's necessary to maintain them is to trim off the branches growing into the path from the side. The deer will maintain them after that. I don't think herbicide would do much good. You still have to snip off the brush in the trail, alive or dead.
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Old 08-17-2011, 02:53 AM
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Originally Posted by Ohboy View Post
ive used a weedeater,tractor & bush hog, bobcat, machette, atv and some rakes to make trails. start out finding a spot right after hunting season goes out then take a atv and make a trail then start cutting down trees that are in my way then use the bush hog or bobcat to clear the trail. then come next year it will be clear except some weeds but the weedeater & rakes takes care of that. havent had any problem with deer activity, actually i found they like to walk my trail, but i also havent killed any mature bucks near these sites, but plenty of does and smaller bucks visit often.. good luck with your trails and good luck this season
Well can I borrow your tractor and bobcat??? Lol, thanks for the info but i just dont have access to that kinda stuff. I'm trying to use more of a poor mans method to clear trails. I guess the machetes and saws are probably my best bet though.
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Old 08-17-2011, 02:55 AM
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I use a billygoat brush mower and try to make all my trails intersect near my stand. The deer start using your new trail very quickly.If you throw some seeds on the now bare dirt just before it rains you will have a food plot.
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Old 08-17-2011, 04:23 AM
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jimmy- if all your looking to do is make walking trails, i would just use some trimmers, a machette, and a weedeater if needed.
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Old 08-17-2011, 04:32 AM
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Weed killer will only kill the small plants and grasses, as mentioned by others. If you don't have heavy equipment, a small push mower with blade set as high as possible can do a nice job of making a trail. Then, deer traffic will keep it open.
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Old 08-17-2011, 08:58 AM
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Originally Posted by MZS View Post
Weed killer will only kill the small plants and grasses, as mentioned by others. If you don't have heavy equipment, a small push mower with blade set as high as possible can do a nice job of making a trail. Then, deer traffic will keep it open.
Incorrect. We use Roundup (Accord actually, same chemical though) all the time in forestry to site prep conversion sites (hardwood to pine) to control the resprouting of hardwoods. It's highly effective if applied correctly. Also, it has minimal effects on wildlife, otherwise it would not be approved for this use, especially if you're using stump application. Haven't seen many deer gnawing on tree stumps.

I've used it on our own land to control resprouting on trails after we've trimmed them back with saws. Some species like alder, aspen, red maple, etc resprout vigorously after you've trimmed them, so you'll have twice the job the following year if you don't control the sprouts. Stump application with roundup works great to control the sprouts.
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