By Mark Kenyon

Despite the fact that we’re still buried in snow, I’m definitely getting the itch to start planning my whitetail habitat projects for the coming spring and summer. If for no other reason, it gives me reason to imagine what the warming rays of the sun feel like, and maybe even recall how the color green looks to the eye.

That said, today I wanted to share a few thoughts on the FIRST thing you should think about when considering the project of food plots. That first thing to consider is location.

Food plots are terrific, and the  benefits of having them on your property for deer are obvious. But rarely do we consider the risks.

Mainly the risks of food plots come into play when they are located incorrectly. Simply put, if a food plot is placed in such an area that you end up spooking deer consistently when accessing, leaving, or hunting your property – it’s doing you more harm than good.

This is a concept that has been drilled into my mind by Jeff Sturgis.

Jeff, the 2004 QDMA Deer Manager of the Year, stresses the importance of food plot location in his terrific book “Whitetail Success By Design“, and upon finishing that book I immediately began looking at habitat projects differently. No food plot, bedding area, travel corridor, access route or other feature exists in isolation. Instead, all of these features work together and effect whitetail behavior and , in turn, the “huntability” of a property.

This overarching idea is something I’d encourage you to keep in mind this spring when planning your projects. And to further emphasize this point, I wanted to share a video from Jeff, in which he describes a food plot location on one of his properties, and how the strategic placement of this plot and other features will make for a perfect hunting location.

Enjoy the video, and remember … Location, location, location. It’s not just a real estate catch phrase.

For more from Jeff Sturgis, visit I highly, highly recommend his book “Whitetail Success By Design”.

In addition to Jeff’s site, if you’re looking for more food plotting help, I’d encourage you to visit Whitetail Institute’s Food Plot Info page – lots of great articles and videos there.