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Ask The Biologist: Do deer like to feed on millet?

Back To "Ask The Biologist?"QUESTION: I was wondering if deer like to feed on millet. There is a huge field of it next to my box stand this year. The field was planted in soybeans last year with a cornfield on the other side of me. I have noticed lots of deer trails through both fields, and I’m getting lots of good trail camera pictures, but was wondering if millet was on a deer’s buffet list. They are really hitting the wild grapes hard, but after they’re gone, would the millet be next on their hit list? My uncle and I have the small farm leased and practice deer management. We plant winter food plots and plan to plant turnips soon. Any help would be great! — Bennie L. Jr.

Ask The Biologist

ANSWER: Millet can be a very productive wildlife food for some species, particularly doves and upland game birds. Deer will feed on certain varieties, under certain circumstances, but they show a much stronger preference for other warm-season annuals like milo, sorghum beans, peas and lablab.

Assuming the field you’re discussing is pure millet, the deer trails you see are probably used more by deer passing through it. Planting turnips or other brassicas would be a great idea, as it will provide cold-season food after the corn is harvested.

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