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Discussion Starter #1
I am looking for useful info on creating bedding in a hemlock area. I understand the thermal cover aspect of these trees and how it will be gone by doing this with them, . I have considered this spot carefully based on it's location and it is where I want to create bedding and security cover, just not sure it is possible and can't find any info on it with a quick google search. Has anyone done it? The area has lots of visibility now, prob 80 yards to 100 with ease, just want to make reasonably sure this will work, obviously deer eat hemlock but I don't think the trees survive hinging so they won't put up much browse once cut, the sunlight is what I am counting on to offset that and spur new growth. I plan to harvest some and drop the rest, there are a few white oaks I plan to leave, and a few yellow birch that will be hinged too.


I couldn't find any info online of anyone who has done this, just figured I would ask here
 

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I agree. Hinge cutting is generally used to provide food. Bad idea.
 

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Speaking from experience, no hemlocks will not hinge and it will be a dead zone if you dont cut trails and small areas for them to bed

My situation wasnt for bedding though. It was to create thick cover so people walking the GL border couldn't see or shoot in. It was only 2 or 3 acres. Last year i put a cam on the edge of my cut and had pics of buck after buck going in and out.

I left most of the ones with lower branches and a couple for stands. All others got cut.

You may want to start out small. Like 1/4 or 1/2 acre. How big of a bedding area are you making?

I' ll get some pics next time i'm up my place.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Input is appreciated and thank you. Hinge cuts are made to provide bedding too, I do realize these trees will not be long term browse and will die. Some of the trees are not marketable timber due to crooked growth, damage or rot. Some of them are marketable and have ruined the others, at the very least I am taking some of them out but I have a long term desire to make this an attractive bedding area. I already figure it will be a mess for a period of time, the long term plan is what I am looking at and cannot find any documented info from anyone who has worked an area like this in a similar fashion. It is all pine needles under the canopy now, very little for deer to eat, red squirrels love it though.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
It's a bit more than an acre and would make cover between two thick areas that are low lying and wet most of the year, it's the only dry spot which was also a selection reason. I too want to make it so the visibility from the neighboring property is reduced. I did not figure the trees would live, or be hinge cuts in a traditional sense, I kind of used that title to grab folks attention too.



I would love to see a few pictures, you are the first person I have found who has done something similar to this. I have owned this land 23 years come February and this is a spot that see's only passing traffic, I want to slow the critters down here if I can.
 

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Hemlock is poverty browse, only used out of necessity when preferred foods are not available. It is however, valuable for thermal cover for deer and If I had a heavy stand of hemlock I would leave it for just that purpose. The property I hunt had a very large stand of mature scotch pine, that spot used to be for Christmas trees. When ever the weather is crappy, hard rain, wind, blowing snow etc. That stand of pine is full of deer, it is the perfect addition to the oak and hickory woods on the rest of the property. When you walk into the pines on a very cold day you can feel the temperature is substantially warmer in there than outside them and if raining it is much drier and little rain reaches the ground.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I asked because I wanted to hear what others had done in similar spots. I could not find any documentation on it and since there are a lot of Eastern Hemlock in this state, it being our state tree, I considered it a worthwhile topic to start a discussion on.. Your advice was don't do it and I respect that position but I am planning to do something with this area and gathering information is where I am now. I haven't even gassed up the saw so what could talking about this hurt? I thought this was a forum to share ideas and maybe gain knowledge?
 

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I thought that is what we were doing.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I honestly want to make it clear, I respect both of your opinions when you say not to do this but in a larger scheme of things I am considering this based on my goals here, the location of other bedding areas, food sources, and my style of hunting. In no way am I disrespecting what you are saying, I am making certain this is what I want to do before I do anything, fair enough?
 

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Always to get input from others who may have tried what you're thinking of doing even if you sorta made up your mind already. Sometimes we do tend to change our minds!:smile2:
 

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My 2 cents says to cut it all down. We nuked a few acres of OLD pole timber type white pines a few years ago. They were fairly open inside, and nothing was really bedding in there. A few years after, things got nice and thick there, and it was a great place to push deer out of. I think I shot two bucks in 3 years that were bedding/hiding in there.

You could probably get the local DCNR forester to give you a recommendation, too. (or another state/local agency)
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I am told that increasing sunlight on the forest floor provide lots of new growth, that is the plan.
 

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2 cents is all it is worth, thermal cover is valuable, as I explained earlier as per the property I have been hunting for 15 years.
 

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The stand of pine on the property I hunt are mature trees planted in rows wide enough to drive a truck through and the foliage is no where close to the ground those trees are at least 50 feet high and there is a huge difference in temperature (warmer) inside the stand than out side and it is a deer magnet. There is no food inside, plenty of food outside. The deer use it for shelter and for cover when disturbed.
 

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Not a fan of monocultures. I think diversity is key with most things. Unless you want a bedding area devoted to late winter.
Its only a acre, your most likely going to get hemlock regeneration as well. I would plant clusters of spruce through out it to replacrw the thermal qualities you lost.
 
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