Bob and Suzie Smith of Lexington, Tennessee, joined the Mossy Oak GameKeepers ProStaff in May 2017, when they were recommended by another ProStaffer, Jason Patterson.
“I've worked with Jason Patterson for many years, and we go to church with him,” Bob said. “Jason has hunted with us on our little farm, and he told me he had gotten on the Mossy Oak GameKeepers Pro Staff. He said, ‘This is exactly what you and Susie already do.’”
“We own 106 acres, and we hunt several other properties where the landowners have given us permission to improve the habitat for wildlife,” said Suzie. “If you add it all up, I guess we have about 500 acres that we can hunt.”
Bob had hunted all his life, and his dad and mother were both hunters. Suzie’s dad and brother hunted all the time.
“I would hunt in the mornings and then come in and spend the afternoons with Susie, but she could tell I wanted to hunt the afternoons also,” Bob explains.
At that time, the Smiths had a lot of spikes and young bucks with weird antlers on their property. So, Susie volunteered to harvest the spikes and weird-antlered bucks and told Bob, “That way, you can hunt in the afternoons, and I can go with you. I’ll harvest the small bucks that you don’t want to take.”
After Susie’s first season, she and Bob started watching the Mossy Oak GameKeepers TV show, and Susie started getting the “GameKeepers Magazine.” She studied the magazine to see how they could improve their property to have more game to hunt. Susie, a high school economic teacher, is the kind of person that when she finds an interest, she wants to learn all she can about it. Bob is a dispatcher for Old Dominion Freight Line, Inc.
“I went deer hunting every morning and every night that first year,” Suzie said. “By the end of that season, I think Bob was worn out with deer hunting.”
Besides having deer and turkeys on their farm, the Smiths also have duck holes for waterfowl. They’ve learned that if they have corn planted, they’ll have deer, turkeys and ducks.
“We planted about 10 acres of corn on our farm that was entirely for wildlife,” Bob explained. “On the other properties that we lease to hunt, we've probably planted another 10 acres of corn. We have corn fields that we flood for the ducks. After duck season ends, we leave the corn standing for the turkeys and deer.”
The Smiths’ farm is unique in that they don’t really hold deer on their lands. They use the corn to draw the deer to their property.
“As Susie continued to study her GameKeeper magazines, we started planting BioLogic Clover Plus and BioLogic Deer-Radish, and a different variety of deer and turkey food throughout the season,” Bob said. “Over the last three years, we’ve had a tremendous amount of deer coming to and through our property to feed.”