Repellents and White Tailed Deer
Facts about Deer Repellents
Read this information before buying Deer
Animal Warning Devices (We welcome any other information)
There are various products such as "deer whistles" that allege to
send out a sonic signal to prevent deer/vehicle collisions. Studies have shown
these products don't work. Visit
Deer Sonic Devices for more information. See http://www.usroads.com/journals/rmj/9705/rm970503.php
for similar information.
L.A. Romin and L.B. Dalton, "Lack of response by mule deer to wildlife
warning whistles." Wildlife Society Bulletin 20:382, 1992.
J.R. Stout, et al "Perceptions of Risk from deer-related vehicle accidents:
Implications" Wildlife Society Bulletin 21:237, 1993.
M. Bomford and P.H. O'Brien's "Sonic Deterrents in Animal Damage Control:
A review.." Wildlife Society Bulletin 18:411 1990.
Deer Taste Repellents
Many people think that various odors will repel deer and/or stop them from
eating plants. The difficulty in evaluating repellents stems from a number of
factors. First, if deer have the opportunity to eat untreated food they will
do so. However, if food supplies become too low, they will hold their nose so
to speak and eat the treated food. Studies have found that the larger the plot
you intend to protect the less effective the repellent becomes.
Second, the palatability of the food to begin with also impacts
the effectiveness of the repellent. For example if the deer doesn't particularly
like the plant to begin with, adding the repellent will only increase the deer's
dislike and ultimately avoid eating the plant. Third, sometimes the cost of
the repellent in material and labor is more expensive than the product you are
trying to protect. Finally, hunting and environmental pressures impact the efficacy
of repellents. Heavy rains or heavy hunting will certainly diminish or enhance
repellent efficacy for obvious reasons.
For the philosophy behind repellent effectiveness read Abderrahim El Hani,
etc. "Comparative Analysis of Deer Repellents" (Mammal's Chapter 14)Berryman
Institute and Dept. of Fisheries and Wildlife, Utah State Univ. Logan, UT 84322-5210
|Urban Deer Booklet
||Deer and Gardens Booklet
Stats on Deer Repellents
Human Sweat has been found ineffective (3-methyl-2-henanoic acid) when
presented at concentrations found in human sweat and at concentrations 10 times
that amount. Michele C. Milunas, et al. "Effectiveness of Odour repellents
for protecting ornamental shrubs from browsing by white-tailed deer" Crop
Protection 1994 Vol. 13 no. 5 pp. 393-397.
Big Game Repellent has been found to reduce deer browsing damage to
Japanese Yews about 50% in comparison to untreated bushes. Roger Conover. "Comparison
of Two Repellents for Reducing Deer Damage to Japanese Yews During Winter"
Wildlife Society Bulletin. 15:265-2658, 1987.
HinderŽ has been found to reduce deer browsing damage to Japanese Yews
almost as well as Big Game Repellent. Roger Conover. "Comparison of Two
Repellents for Reducing Deer Damage to Japanese Yews During Winter" Wildlife
Society Bulletin. 15:265-2658, 1987.
Human Hair is used by placing two-four handfuls of hair into a nylon
bag and suspending it around the tree you wish to protect. One study found that
it reduced damage 35%. Michael Conover. "Effectiveness of Repellents in
Reducing Deer Damage in Nurseries." Wildlife Society Bulletin. 12:399-404,
Miller's Hot SauceŽ reduced browsing damage by 15%. Michael Conover.
"Effectiveness of Repellents in Reducing Deer Damage in Nurseries."
Wildlife Society Bulletin. 12:399-404, 1984.
Magic Circle reduced browsing damage by 18%. Michael Conover. "Effectiveness
of Repellents in Reducing Deer Damage in Nurseries." Wildlife Society
Bulletin. 12:399-404, 1984.
Disclaimer: WDC seeks to provide accurate, effective and responsible information
on resolving human/wildlife conflicts. We welcome suggestions, criticisms to
help us achieve this goal. The information provided is for informational purposes
only and users of the information use it at their own risk. The reader must
consult state/federal officials to determine the legality of any technique in
the reader's locale. Some techniques are dangerous to the user and to others.
WDC encourages readers to obtain appropriate training (see our informational
literature at our Store ), and understand that proper animal damage
control involves patience, understanding that not every technique/method works
for every situation or even 100% of the time. Your use of this information is
governed by this understanding.
We welcome potential users of the information
and photos to simply ask for permission via e-mail. Finally, WDC welcomes
e-mail but understand that all e-mails become property of Wildlife Damage Control.