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Does Deer Attractant Work: Every Tiny Insight That You Need to Know

Does deer attractant work
Written by Marc Niad
Last Update: August 11, 2023

Since deer tend to wander at night more, it is quite complicated to hunt them during daylight. This brings us to using different ways to lure deer to a hunting spot in the daytime. Thus, over time, deer attractants have become popular among the hunters. But does deer attractant work?

It is quite debatable – the effectiveness of deer attractant. Some believe that they work, while some are skeptical. However, apart from the deer attractant itself, the effectiveness depends on other variables like how the user is using it, competency of the substance with the surroundings, time, patience, weather, etc. 

Nonetheless, let’s dig into this ‘deer attractant’ thing and explore the efficiency and how to get that. With this article, you will get a confusion-free concept regarding using deer attractants.

Types of Deer Attractant

Deer hunting is a matter of patience. But patience must be incorporated with hard work and no give-up policy. As a matter of fact, with such an acute sense of hearing and smelling of deer, if you aren’t aware of facts and other details, you are more likely to fail in terms of hunting a deer.

Deer attractant is used to lure deer into your shooting range. It’s a way of attracting deer without letting them be aware of any threats nearby. In this way, it’s easier to increase your scores. Your success rate might get a boost if you can properly use deer attractants. There are different types of deer attractants. Let’s understand them one by one:

Deer Scents

Types of deer attractant - Deer Scents

Deer depend a lot on their smelling sense. They try to sense each other’s presence by sniffing smells, and they can also identify threats through smelling as well. In terms of mating season, bucks try to identify where and when to mate since does fix the place and time on their own. Any similar scents to estrus urine, rutting buck scent, or so might attract a deer for real.

Food Plots

Deer Food Plots

Deer need to feed themselves for strength, to survive harsh winter, to be stronger for mating season, and whatnot. Therefore, food plots are being used to draw deer out near to your hunting zone.

Food plots might vary in sizes and types of crops. However, try to use this nearby any natural feeding place or any natural wandering areas of deer.


Deer Minerals

As food, deer need minerals to keep fit and to enrich their nutrition. Sodium and calcium appear as natural deer attractants. It is wise to combine minerals with food plots for a better outcome.

Be aware of the rules and regulations of the state that you are hunting in regarding the use of minerals as deer attractant. Ensure that you comply with the provisions.


Deer baits

Baiting is a combination of food plots and minerals. You may put a pile of corn and other deer-friendly feed along with some minerals nearby any deer grazing or living area. This tempting source of nutrition might lure your target.

Formats of Deer Attractant

Whatever the deer attractant is, when they are produced commercially, they are produced in different formats. The reason is to increase the efficiency and ease of applying them. Let’s find out the types as follows:


This format is meant to be applied on the ground and mixed with food or minerals. They also carry enriched food value for deer, and that makes this attractant more appealing.


The powder format deer attractants are mostly produced to be mixed with food ingredients. Or you may disperse them directly on the ground.


Liquid attractants are easier to apply and mix, and apart from this, the liquid contains high concentrations. And that might attract your target from a comparatively farther distance. It’s mostly supposed to be mixed with corn or any commercial feed produced for deer.


Here, you will need to use either an aerosol pump or spray to disperse the attractant that is in aerosol format. Basically, this deer attractant format consists of chemical substances that copy the appearance of a nearby buck that’s trying to establish a territory or a heating doe. It is also easier to carry and even disperse. A short suggestion, apply this format during or before the rut.

Does Deer Attractant Work?

It is proven that the smelling sense of deer is one of the best defensive mechanism adaptations in nature. On top of that, deer tend to interact among themselves through their urine and secretions: chemical compositions and odor, to be specific.

In fact, during the mating season or while fixing the territory of a mature buck, the smell works as a communication medium. Deer even tend to spot their feed source or drinking source through smell.

Deer have a more acute smelling sense even compared to dogs, and 500 to 1000 times more than a human being. Therefore, if you can place deer attractant properly and have enough patience, you might embrace success. In the meantime, consider the other variables since smell is a strong sense to draw a deer. And when it’s mating season, the need for calories and minerals is at a higher level, so deer are more likely to get lured.

Effectiveness of Deer Attractant

If you are hungry and suddenly smell delicious snacks, you’ll feel like following the smell to get to the snacks. Then try to get hold of those snacks. Same works for deer.

But there are a few more variables. While using deer attractants, you need to keep these variables in your mind very cautiously.

You will find the related variables by applying deer attractants as follows:

Wind flow: If the wind doesn’t flow accordingly (from the place of the deer attractant to the approximate position of your target), it’s hopeless to be optimistic about the outcome.

Your own smell: If you forget to hide your own smell, then there’s no need to use deer attractant.

Be early and patient: While applying the substances, try to be early and keep as much patience as required. Try to set it up prior to the mating season so that deer get used to it.

Better angle: Fix your spot considering all the probabilities and get a better angle for shooting.

Quality of attractant: Don’t ignore this! If you fail to apply decent quality deer attractants, you are less likely to succeed.

Final Words

So, does deer attractant work? The answer is positive. However, it is recommended not to depend on deer attractants solely since there are lots of ‘ifs’ and ‘buts’. Therefore, it is wise to use it and take gradual and determined preparation with patience.

Be focused and try to combine different types of deer attractants. Spread your area to enhance the success rate. Try using ‘deer calls’ along with deer attractants.

About the author

Marc Niad

It’s been several years that Marc, a retired teacher and a proud dad, has silently been piling up mature bucks down the South. This humble hunter began his hunting journey at quite an early age and since then, he spent countless hours in the woods and learned good lessons in terms of woodsmanship. Along the way, he also made money sharing his skill with his followers and well-wishers.

The Ranger Expert is the brainchild of this veteran hunter who loves hunting the swamps and the hills around the Mississippi and Homochitto rivers. His most favorite hunting technique is taking his climbing gear and going to the top of pines with a 25.06 – the old-fashioned way!

He gets most of his games during late December through mid-January – his favorite hunting time. Marc strongly believes that hard work, passion, and a bit of luck can bring you success in the wild.

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