The deer family is renowned for their exceptional sense of smell. A deer’s nose will allow it to sniff out the potential mates as well as predators around them.
For the hunters, knowing how far deer can smell and learning the factors that affect their ability to smell is the key to success.
What can you do to attract a deer if you are out there in the wild?
You may use food, especially a tasty treat of corn, to lure the deer to a hunting spot of your choice. This treat is full of starch and will provide essential nutrition to the bucks and keep them returning to your preferred hunting spot.
Deer use sniffing as their superpower to locate food or sense predators. However, hunters can take advantage of deer’s sense of smell and lure them with different odorants.
Can Deer Smell Corn From a Distance?
A deer’s nose is exceptional; its sense of smell far exceeds that of a human being and even a hunting dog. Therefore, when it comes to sniffing out corn from a distance, a deer can quickly smell it from within a mile!
Remember, when it comes to mapping and charting a food plot on the area where you want to hunt. You can identify and use factors such as the wind direction as a helpful resource to map out and identify possible locations for food plot placement.
Just like hunters, a deer is an intelligent animal that uses weather conditions and the direction of the wind to its advantage and to detect and draw out food location from the smell that wind carries!
Did you know that corn is quite a common attractant for bucks and does? They can smell this starchy treat over long distances due to their incredible sense of smell!
Therefore, if you place corn in the right place, a deer will detect this delicious treat in no time. Plus, corn is tasty for the deer and the cheapest means of baiting for a hunter!
According to experts, deer have an intense craving for corn. As hunters, you could use this craving to your advantage by looking for corn that is less sweet and high in starch, such as Indian corn.
It’s no wonder that many master hunters frequently create corn piles to lure deer into their property.
Moreover, if you want to upgrade your hunting game, rub some peanut butter on the corn. This trick will surely attract the deer from miles away, and your trail cam will catch them scampering to get a taste of this delicious treat!
If you want to make things more interesting, mix the corn with horse feed; this mixture will make the smell go further and further. It will indeed work like magic!
How Far Can Deer Smell Corn?
To put it simply, experts have researched that a deer can sniff out the scent of corn up to a mile away. However, factors such as humidity, the direction of the wind, and the deer’s level of fear or excitement will affect their sense of smell.
Keeping all these factors in mind, scientists have been unable to determine how far deer can smell corn precisely. Yet, it is presumed that due to their sensitive olfactory receptors, a deer can detect corn from a couple of miles away!
Many people have tried to record the exact range by piling up corn as bait. Their experiments have proved helpful as they showed a deer’s keen ability to smell corn from a mile away!
How Long Does It Take For Deer to Find Corn?
Wild bucks and does are intermediate feeders, meaning their diet consists of a combination of browsing and grazing. Hence, they are always on the move looking for new and available food sources.
A deer will rely heavily upon, and sometimes solely, on scent and will follow their highly sensitive smelling power to uncover the source of the most nutritional food in the area.
Finding corn takes about one to three days for a deer. When you set up corn in a pile, a buck or doe will usually locate it and arrive on the same day. If not, they’ll surely reach there the next day!
As mentioned above, it generally takes deer two to three days to find corn. However, multiple factors contribute to the time it might take for a deer to find corn.
Certain factors like neighboring food sources, weather, and quality of the corn can slow the deer from finding the corn right away.
However, deer residing near corn resources can find the maize more quickly than those bucks and does who do not reside near the cornfield.
It might be quite easy for a resident deer to find corn in a day. A resident deer is a deer that resides in a licensed property for not less than two years.
To attract a resident deer, hunters can consult a map, and identify the places suitable for the deer, such as bedding areas and scratches. Then, the hunters can set up corn piles in these identified areas.
If you are lucky, a deer can easily find your corn in a day or even less, and might even visit it whenever you pile up corn. In short, resident deer are given the status of residents when they stay in a specialized locality for long time.
Many resident deer can even locate corn in an hour or less. The trick is to mix your corn with something equally attractive such as peanut butter or horse feed.
Non-resident deer are not native to your property. In such a case, a hunter can attract the non-resident deer to his lands through corn or other kinds of bait. However, to attract a non-resident deer, you would have to set up corn piles and wait a long time, as it will depend significantly on the weather and the deer’s travel routes.
A deer can take up to three to four weeks to find corn. It is best to mix up other attractants with corn in these situations.
Remember, patience is the key, for a deer will always find corn.
And since the deer can sniff out humans, staying away from the area is recommended. Your best deal is to set up a trail cam near the pile to keep a lookout.
Will Deer Eat Wet Corn?
How to know whether a deer eat wet corn or not? Firstly, the quality of corn is a major factor when it comes to deer food-picking behavior. If the corn becomes moldy, then deer won’t eat the corn. Similarly, a deer will not come near soft corn, swelled up.
As a hunter, looking for the best quality corn that doesn’t go bad even if it rains is best. Plus, spread the corn instead of making a mountain out of a corn pile.
This way, a deer will smell faster, and the corn won’t go moldy in the rain!
But, Why Do Deer Like Corn?
Corn is full of nutritional content that is good for deer. Plus, it is full of starch, providing the deer with tons of energy. Apart from gaining daily energy, corn is known for ensuring deer survival during the cold seasons.
Moreover, other minerals such as Phosphorus and Calcium are plentiful in corn. Both are essential for deer.
Due to the presence of many acids in corn, the buck’s digestive system keeps healthy. This is because the acidic nature of corn defends the gastrointestinal tract of deer against the microorganism flora.
However, experts recommend not relying entirely on corn for feeding deer. Doing so could harm the deer even on a short-term basis. The reason is that, corn is a fermentable carbohydrate. And if consumed too much it can disrupt the deer’s digestive process causing flush of lactic acid in their stomach leading to severe dehydration and even death.
So, How to Feed Deer Corn Properly?
To feed a deer the right way, it is best to research before feeding. If you are a newbie, you need to consult an expert and create a proper feeding strategy.
Feeding a deer properly consists of the best food products, which include the likes of natural and artificial supplements.
Remember, feed the right amount of food at the right time! Corn can be your best choice as it is super attractive to the deer.
What Else Can You Feed a Deer?
There are many other attractants apart from corn that attracts deer. Plenty of other foods are far more aromatic, with a stronger scent that spreads faster than corn. For example, peanut butter will attract a deer faster than corn. So the best thing you can do is rub some on corn!
You can even use bark or tree branches as a surface and spread some peanut butter on top of them. Apart from peanut butter, you can use Oats, maize, and Alfalfa to lure a deer to your property!
If you want a deer to sniff out your corn, the best temperature and day is a mildly warm day. You can set up bait by taking into account the direction of the wind.
The wind needs to carry the scent of corn toward the most suitable grazing areas to guarantee the maximum chance of the corn scent being carried to the deer population.
Can Deer Smell Apples?
A deer is very much attracted to the scent of the apples. In many regions, hunters use apple trees on their hunting property to lure out wild bucks.
Many hunters compliment apples with other soft mast fruit trees and food plots to ensure the maximum chances of attracting deer to their area.
How Far Can Deer Smell Apples?
A deer can easily smell apples from a few hundred yards. It is possible for deer to identify a soft mast source despite harsh weather conditions.
As apple trees are perfect as soft masts, a deer will be attracted to them. It is because soft mast fruits are edible, easy to swallow and rich in nutrients!
Apple trees are specifically used and sought out by tree stand bow hunters on private lands; if you want to keep bucks and does on your land, maintain a soft mast food source in combination with the hard mast.
Will Deer Eat Peanut Butter?
If there’s one thing that wild bucks like, it is Peanut butter. It is one of their favorite foods. Therefore, peanut butter is a useful bait to attract deer. Peanut butter is easy to find and an economical choice for deer attractants.
Most experienced hunters often use doe estrus near trees laced with peanut butter to lure big bucks; such a combination is bound to bring the buck running toward the source.
Knowing how to use peanut butter, doe estrus, weather conditions, the direction of the wind, and understanding deer psychology is important for hunting effectively!
How Far Away Can Deer Smell Peanut Butter?
When hunters properly use peanut butter to lure a deer, it is safe to say that a buck can sniff out peanut butter from approximately a mile away. A deer loves the rich, nutty scent of peanut butter!
Plus, if peanut butter is mixed with corn or doe estrus, the scent spreads faster and reaches the deer quicker than any other attractant.
Additionally, it is observed that like deer, other animals such as bears, elks, and pigs can also be lured towards a place in the same manner. It’s peanut butter for the win.
Can Deer Smell Water?
Generally, water has no smell. Humans can’t smell water. But a deer can still sniff it out. How? It can smell waterborne particles, plants, bacteria, algae, animals, and other things associated with water that give away the location of water.
Therefore, water has no scent. however, a deer can find the location of the water by sniffing out the smells around the water.
Hello, my name is J.R.Sullivan. Ever since a kid I have been passionate about hunting. Growing up in the countryside with the woods behind our house, hunting had been our favorite pastime. My father and I would wake up before anyone else, pack our bags, and spend hours in the woods in complete silence, waiting for our prey. This was not only a hobby for us but a way of life and the number one way we bonded.