Defeating deer’s smell may be difficult but not impossible. The most important aspect is to avoid bringing unnecessary stuff to deer ground and kill scent of everything in your gear including clothes and boots. When killing odour, spray on each accessory even your glasses, cap, gun or bow. Spray inside your truck and on shirt sleeves as well.
On top of killing the scent, keep in mind the direction of wind and movement of deer/deer trail. If a hunter does these two steps carefully, getting a big buck in your hunting range is not hard anymore.
Human smell does scare deer but not always. We used some trail cameras to understand does human urine repel deer and can deer smell human urine. To our surprise, some bucks smell it and ignored it. While others seem to be scared and ran away immediately. To my experience, it depends on area and human population.
Human Scent and Deer Hunting
These conclusions are based on our observations through trail camera on private hunting lands on more than 5 events over 2 years.
Hunters have had one common question for quite a long time now i.e., how to conceal ourselves from a game animal. Bucks possess a superpower of smell which alerts them about predators from miles away. Consequently, deer run far away even before hunters can spot them.
Considering the dominating smelling sense of deer, hunters’ concern about their scent makes so much sense. However, humans have come up with various ways to tackle the deer’s greatest advantage.
Controlling Human Scent
Luckily, there is now an influx of products that help hunters to eliminate their scent before venturing out. These products include scent-eliminating sprays, clothing, glassing equipment and accessories, (e.g. best rangefinder lanyard tether) and even wearables/thermals.
Masking sprays are the most widely used products when it comes to eliminating human scent. Controlling scent sprays are readily available almost everywhere and are super convenient to use. These sprays contain scent masking components and technology.
This product works by adding a new odor of pine or fresh earth in order to mask the personal scent. While wearing the masking spray, you can easily go near a deer without spooking it with your odor.
These are relatively newer for hunters and an exceptional way to keep the personal scent from spreading into the air. The scent-eliminating clothes are designed using materials that keep the body scent within the suit. Air is the foremost factor in spreading body odor in the environment but, with this garment, the scent doesn’t escape into the surroundings.
The newest invention in scent control options are electronic devices that work as an excellent scent-killer. Since these are highly expensive, only professional hunters are seen opting for this method. Several products range in this category such as ozonics machine, zero trace ion unit, scent crusher, and more.
Do Deer Smell Human Urine?
Peeing in the woods isn’t anything unusual for the hunters because they are out on a hunt for hours. And yes, deers are capable of smelling human urine. So, how do they respond to it? Human urine doesn’t smell like deer’s urine at all and hence, bucks are not tempted towards it.
It has been written countless times about the ultra-keen smelling sense of bucks which makes them probably the most challenging game animals to hunt. However, human and deer urine has immense similarities in terms of components. For example, both contain urea, ammonia, potassium, sodium chloride, and more.
These tips are extremely crucial since many hunters want to know how to get deer to come out during the day!
How Far Does Human Scent Travel?
A variety of factors, most importantly wind, can impact the distance that human scent can travel. It is quite hard to determine how far a human scent travels. However, if we talk about a deer’s sense of smell, it can smell a human scent from ¼ to ½ miles away.
Does Human Urine Deter Deer?
Many hunters have carried a urine bottle with them for a long time due to the uncertainty about whether human urine scares deer or not. Hunters used to either travel far away from their treestand in order to urinate or use the urine bottle. They believed that doing so would prevent them from deterring the game animals.
However, after a couple of recent experiments, the thoughts were altered. In these experiments, hunters urinated on deer scrapes as well as near the treestands. Deers came near those spots but didn’t freak out. While a human scent would alert the deer and send them to another territory, their urine won’t.
It can’t be determined if they recognized human urine or not, but they weren’t afraid of it at least. That said, it won’t be useful to use human urine as deer repellent. Moreover, you can save your time by peeing in a nearby spot or even using a deer scrape for it rather than traveling miles away from your treestand.
Deer hunting is a fun-filled and thrilling adventure that, if done right, can bag you a trophy buck. Although, deer urine has played an integral role in deer hunting for ages.
Human pee is always associated with habitat and ecosystem around the land. Sometime, deer get spooked by human scent. (urine, hair, etc.) However, most of the time, deer are not bothered by smell of human and pass along ignoring it.
As said earlier, we observed deer activity with human pee through trail camera on our private hunting lands in 2021 and 2022.
It is something that hunters can never stop using. However, the key to a successful hunt is learning useful hunting techniques from seasoned hunters and implementing them rightly.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ’s)
Yes, deer can smell human urine. However, they might not be able to figure out if it is human urine or anything else.
It is surprising to know that human urine smell can last up to 5 to 14 days in the woods. The lasting of the odor depends on several factors. For example, the bacteria, air, moisture, etc.
As mentioned earlier, the scent of human excrement doesn’t attract the deer. However, it isn’t bothersome to them either.