Deer cant see light from flashlight?

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DaHunter
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Deer cant see light from flashlight?

Unread postby DaHunter » Sun Oct 22, 2017 3:57 am

Was listening to a podcast with Aaron/Zach from The Hunting Public and they said that they thought deer couldn't see the light of a flashlight, even if it's a white light. Anyone else agree or have evidence for/against? They basically said it's the noise/movement/scent that scares them rather than a random light in the woods. Gave an example of a recent hunt where a buck was bedded within 50 yds and they were taking their stands down quietly with lights on and the buck never spooked because they were so quiet. I guess it makes sense but who knows?


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Re: Deer cant see light from flashlight?

Unread postby mauser06 » Sun Oct 22, 2017 4:11 am

I coon hunt and also spotlight deer a few times a year.


Coon hunting, I've been within numerous deer either bedded or feeding that didn't care. Curious more than anything it seemed.

Other times a light hits then and it's like you shot at them. Instant. I see that spotting too. Don't even slow the truck down. Hit the light and they take off.


I'd imagine they can see it. How they react to it... I'd say varies on the situation and the deer. Walking into a stand with a small light pointed toward the ground..I don't think is a real big deal. Walk in with a big bright light shining all around and I think you might shoot deer or alert them to your presence.
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Re: Deer cant see light from flashlight?

Unread postby Ragingun » Sun Oct 22, 2017 4:18 am

I don't believe it. Ever shine for deer? Sometimes when the moon is bright enough to see the deer without the spot light they don't care the truck is stopped and looking at them. Put a light on them and watch them react. They see light. It's almost like saying they can't see the sun.....

My guess is that buck was so comfortable and confident in his bedding position as well as confident in his escape routes that he felt no need to leave. A good friend of mine climbed a tree only to turn around and see what looked like a dead buck. It was a big buck he had seen before and knew was in the area. The buck was laying on its side. He began to climb down and when he did the buck got up and bolted. The buck was seen later that year still as healthy as a horse. This buck was so confident in it's bed that it wanted to wait for him to move on before he moved out to the point that he laid prone in his bed.

Simply goes to show you how confident they are in the areas they select to bed. I'm sure that confidence is accumulated over time. Who knows how many times that bed saved that buck either hiding or using an escape route.
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Re: Deer cant see light from flashlight?

Unread postby Aaron1987 » Sun Oct 22, 2017 4:59 am

It could be the LED light they have trouble seeing. Not totally sure. They may be able to see incandescent light. We are constantly learning about it so any feedback is appreciated. I try to remain objective on anything we do but have total confidence in that light not spooking deer-especially mature bucks.

I think if they could see and didn't care that they would react differently. We've shined them before (with no weapon in possession) with these headlamps and they don't even look up. If you take off walking toward them or moving that's a different story.

The last buck we're referring to in the podcast remained bedded until we got on the ground. Then as we were preparing to walk off we heard him stand up. He actually walked right past the stand slowly feeding on acorns. It was dark but he was close enough we could see him in the moonlight. Totally relaxed and not alarmed. This is a very bright white LED light we're using also. We used to use only the dim green beam because we'd fear that deer would see the brighter white but there doesn't seem to be a difference in their reaction to it.
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Re: Deer cant see light from flashlight?

Unread postby EastCoast » Sun Oct 22, 2017 6:14 am

A few nights ago I was kayaking out of a swamp and saw a deer by the edge of the Brook. I turned my led light to it's brightest setting and as I got closer I could see it was a mature buck. I floated up to less than ten yards from him and and he basically ignored me for several minutes. It wasn't until the wind eventually swirled that he made his way out of there. So in that case I would say the light definitely did not bother or spook him.
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Re: Deer cant see light from flashlight?

Unread postby 1jody256 » Sun Oct 22, 2017 6:36 am

I do not think I'll chance it either way green light for me,working so far this year.
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Re: Deer cant see light from flashlight?

Unread postby Stanley » Sun Oct 22, 2017 7:22 am

Yes deer can see a flashlight. Don't know how anyone could think they can't.
You can fool some of the bucks, all of the time, and fool all of the bucks, some of the time, however you certainly can't fool all of the bucks, all of the time.
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Re: Deer cant see light from flashlight?

Unread postby <DK> » Sun Oct 22, 2017 7:49 am

I noticed an immediate difference in spooking less deer by switching to red/green lights. I run a red light which has gotten me pretty close to deer in the dark but Aaron's observation stories w the green has been slighlty closer proximity so iv considered switching. Nothing beats walking w no light. Just my :twocents-twocents:
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Re: Deer cant see light from flashlight?

Unread postby Ashreve93 » Sun Oct 22, 2017 8:12 am

Aaron1987 wrote:It could be the LED light they have trouble seeing.


I shine with an LED light and they react to it. Often times their head will be down until I shine them, once the light hits them they look up. There's no doubt in my mind they can see light.
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Re: Deer cant see light from flashlight?

Unread postby Jonny » Sun Oct 22, 2017 8:55 am

They see it. Each deer reacts different to it based on experience. Same reason why some deer run away from headlights, and others freeze up.

I run a dimmer white led. Harder to see from a distance but it keeps me from breaking ankles walking in
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Re: Deer cant see light from flashlight?

Unread postby Hawthorne » Sun Oct 22, 2017 8:59 am

I've walked right up on deer with a flashlight more times than I can count. I know they can see it but I think it surprises them cause they're not use to it for the most part. I also do a bit of shining and have some bucks bolt right away. Surprisingly the biggest buck I've shined this year twice has been close to the road and wasn't spooky one bit
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Re: Deer cant see light from flashlight?

Unread postby Aaron1987 » Sun Oct 22, 2017 10:12 am

I suppose it could be that deer can see it and they just don't care at times. We prefer the green yes but I feel more confident about being quiet getting in and out with the aid of the light. Not to mention the safety factor.

I went without a light for a long time and I'm confident I spook fewer deer now than going without. I'm a bit clumsy in the dark so I feel it helps me in our situation.

There have been many times we've seen deer up ahead when using the light and it helped us avoid spooking them. We simply stop and wait for them to move on or walk around them. Without the light we'd of walked up on those deer unknowingly and likely spooked them.
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Re: Deer cant see light from flashlight?

Unread postby Matty » Sun Oct 22, 2017 12:41 pm

Ragingun wrote:I don't believe it. Ever shine for deer? Sometimes when the moon is bright enough to see the deer without the spot light they don't care the truck is stopped and looking at them. Put a light on them and watch them react. They see light. It's almost like saying they can't see the sun.....

My guess is that buck was so comfortable and confident in his bedding position as well as confident in his escape routes that he felt no need to leave. A good friend of mine climbed a tree only to turn around and see what looked like a dead buck. It was a big buck he had seen before and knew was in the area. The buck was laying on its side. He began to climb down and when he did the buck got up and bolted. The buck was seen later that year still as healthy as a horse. This buck was so confident in it's bed that it wanted to wait for him to move on before he moved out to the point that he laid prone in his bed.

Simply goes to show you how confident they are in the areas they select to bed. I'm sure that confidence is accumulated over time. Who knows how many times that bed saved that buck either hiding or using an escape route.


Agree completely. I spot light a lot and a lot of deer become very light shy. As soon as the light comes on, they are running. I've even cut back on how much I shine certain areas to keep from over-pressuring them.

From predator hunting though, I've noticed, they don't seem to notice red light and these are very BRIGHT red lights. I could be wrong, but I've shined it right at them and they don't seem to notice, they just go about their business. Turn on a white light and they go on alert or run. They will notice something is up though if you turn the red light on or off, same with predators. Maybe the change in shadows.

In any case, I always use red for entry and exit. Preserves my night vision and I don't think they notice it, or at least they don't seem as alarmed. I don't walk steady though, I walk like an animal in or out. I've had many sets of glowing eyes watch me without running. When I used white lights, I recall scaring more deer.
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Re: Deer cant see light from flashlight?

Unread postby JAK » Sun Oct 22, 2017 1:24 pm

I always wondered if they could see it i had a doe 20 yards from me on my way in one morning just watched me and another time 2 doe bedded 30 yards from my stand never spooked off and never looked up in my tree when it got light out so there may be truth to what they say
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Re: Deer cant see light from flashlight?

Unread postby sir_tob » Sun Oct 22, 2017 1:39 pm

mauser06 wrote:
Other times a light hits then and it's like you shot at them. Instant. I see that spotting too. Don't even slow the truck down. Hit the light and they take off.


I'd imagine they can see it. How they react to it... I'd say varies on the situation and the deer. Walking into a stand with a small light pointed toward the ground..I don't think is a real big deal. Walk in with a big bright light shining all around and I think you might shoot deer or alert them to your presence.


I agree, they can see it. I was in a stand last year surrounded by does and couldn't get down... I decided to take a look and they halled it out of there.


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