Deer Warning Devices - Deer Whistles

Pooh BearFebruary 8, 2009

We were hit by a deer again tonight on the way home.

This time it didn't do any damage but still it is still un-nerving.

I'm wondering if these deer warning devices actually work.

Last time we hit a deer it cost over $2000, paid by insurance.

We dropped full coverage so if there had been any damage

this time it would not be covered (unless the deer sues).

We tried to find the deer but apparently it ran off.

Do the deer warning whistles work?


Pooh Bear

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A few years back, the Milwaukee Journal ran an article about deer whistles, the ones that depend on the air rushing through the whistle while the vehicle is under way.

As I recall, the papar published findings from the Wisc DNR and said they had not found any evidence these whistles work. A human can't tell if the whistles are working because the sound is pitched above our hearing range - maybe the dog could hear it. That would drive your dog crazy if he had to endure the supposedly racket for any length of time.

It was not explained how the data was analyzed - maybe by counting the number of deer collisions with vehicles equipped with deer whistles.

Vehicle-deer collisions in Wisconsin is a growing problem.

    Bookmark   February 8, 2009 at 2:12AM
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well Pooh,I travel regularly to the north country where I come from,have been for over 5 years now,and the deer are way too plentiful on the highway.

I have the whistles on my van,4 of them in fact,and haven't(knock on wood) had a problem as yet

If you can see the deer in the ditch or on the side of the road,you'll see their ears moving back and forth,so obviously they are hearing the whistling of the vehicle coming.

I swear by the,wouldnt go up that highway without them,but by all means,to each his own

    Bookmark   February 8, 2009 at 10:23AM
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In the early 90s I was in the state of Virginia working. And a local news paper ran an article about the deer whistles that you attach to your bumber. The article stated that every state police cruiser in the state of Virginia had these whistles installed. And if I can remember the figures correctly within a one year period there were around 60 cruisers that had come into contact with deer.

So I guess the moral of the story is. If you have them installed and you never hit a deer, then they work. But on the other hand if you have them installed and you hit a deer. They don't work.

    Bookmark   February 8, 2009 at 12:53PM
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I used to use them and in order for them to work properly the vehicle must be going at least 45 mph and the tiny openings in them must be kept clean . They will get the deer's attention , but I've seen them look up after crossing the road and turn around and go back across the road in front of my car . Gets their attention yes , scares them away from your vehicle sometimes - as it's a crapshoot to which way the beasts run after hearing the noise .

    Bookmark   February 8, 2009 at 2:47PM
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The deer whistles work usually only once. That was another
test. Deer are territorial. They hear the whistle and look around. They then get used to it and don't bother with it
any more. I live in a very serious deer problem area. I have an electric fence around my garden because of deer. i travel the hyway twice a day 4 in the morning and 6 at night. doing that for 21 years. Never hit a deer yet. Mind
you i've come awfull close. Deer usually travel in groups.
Mother deer and little ones right behind. I don't have deer
whistles. It's easy to avoid deer. Turn your radio down,
get off the cell phone. deer are almost always in the same
area. When you get there, SLOW DOWN. The first deer impact
is an accident. The second impact is your fault. SLOW DOWN.

    Bookmark   February 8, 2009 at 6:46PM
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Deer have very good hearing, in fact they hear much better than we do. If you ever spent much time in the country, you'd get used to the fact that you can hear cars and trucks that could be miles away depending on the conditions. Since we can hear cars and trucks, deer certainly can, and that noise alone should be enough to scare them off the road. But as Kalinin said, they simply get used to the sounds cars make and since they don't get chased around the woods by motor vehicles, they soon learn to just ignore the sounds made by cars. The whistles, if they actually do make noise would simply be another sound the deer learn to ignore.

    Bookmark   February 9, 2009 at 8:18AM
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Drove fleet truck in the mountains. Nights. Lots of deer got hit or we had to run over the remains. The yard dog always inspected each truck as it came in and picked off (slurped up) the XS meat.

    Bookmark   February 12, 2009 at 9:21PM
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Pooh Bear

Thanks for all the replies. Sounds like a waste of money.
I wish I could find something that works.
Can't afford to hit any more deer.

Pooh Bear

    Bookmark   February 12, 2009 at 11:59PM
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I have them, and I think they work....for what it's worth. I think it was $7 well spent, and if I'm wrong; well....they'll get knocked off in the accident!

    Bookmark   February 13, 2009 at 2:34PM
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Worked for me against deer, one ran across three lanes of traffic to back up at the last yard.

They dont' work against elk, though.

    Bookmark   February 18, 2011 at 8:44PM
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