Best Deer Decoys for Hunting Reviewed & Rated for Performance
There are many different factors which can lead to a successful hunting trip. Between the location, the time of the hunt and shooting equipment, these are some of the most important components which can lead to you catching a lot of different prey. Another aspect, which can make any deer hunting expedition from a good one into a great one, is the use of hunting decoys. In this guide, we will take a look at some of the best deer decoys available on the market today. With a deer decoy, the more life-like it looks and acts the greater success you will have. The purpose of the decoy is to draw deer over closer to you, which should be better than setting up no decoy at all.
In a Hurry? The test winner after 12 hrs of research
Great paint job
10 Best Deer Decoys
1. Primos Scarface Decoy
Great paint job
The base could be more stable
This Buck decoy from Primos has the decoy in the natural tan color, so you can easily place this decoy in nature and have it fit in with the surroundings.
Suitable for all weather conditions
This decoy has been tested to survive all different kinds of weather environments, so no matter how warm or cold or wet the weather is, this decoy is sure to perform at the highest level.
One of the main things you want from a decoy is for it to be as adjustable as possible, and this one does just that! Featuring adjustable head and neck areas you have the ability to set up your decoy to your liking so that you can attract as many deer as possible.
Cost and Value
Keeping in mind, that you are receiving a larger product it makes sense for it to be on the pricier end. However, when you take into consideration how adjustable it is, it makes the price seem almost too good to be true.
2. Flambeau Masters Doe Deer Decoy
Made from a plastic material
Accepts scent pads and deer calls
The body parts, especially the legs detach easily
This Doe decoy from Flambeau is made from a composite plastic material, so you can rest assured this decoy will last for a few seasons. There are a few adjustable components to this decoy, including the neck and head area, as well as the ears.
These adjustable features allow you to set the decoy up in a few different poses, to add variety to how your decoy is set up. Additionally, the rear legs also have pads on them so you can add different scents to help draw more deer into your area.
In order to have an easy transportation feature this decoy's legs and head come off, and they can be stored inside of its body for the ultimate compact touch.
Cost and Value
Even though it is extremely adjustable and transportable this decoy is priced fairly well. So much so, that we can almost say its a bargain.
3. Montana Decoy Eichler Elk
Easy to transport
Comes with a DVD instruction manual
This multi-colored Elk from Montana Decoy has leg poles on the bottom of it, in order for you to obtain the right height needed for your kill zone area. The design of this Elk was based upon numerous pictures of how Elk pose while in the wild, so you can feel assured this decoy will work in nature.
If you're new to having decoy's as part of your hunting trips this one could be an excellent option for you as you will not only do you get the decoy, but this comes with a DVD, to give you different tools and tricks to set up the decoy properly.
This decoy does fold down, so you can easily transport it back and forth from your hunting areas and back home or the other way around. Additionally, having this feature allows you to easily set it all up and take it down whenever you choose too.
Cost and Value
You are not only getting your decoy but you are getting an instructional DVD as well, with that entire bundle this product comes as a bargain. It is priced extremely well allowing you to know you are getting a high-quality product at an excellent price.
4. Montana Feeding Elk
Made using real elk photos
Bad customer service
This Elk decoy from Montana Decoy is designed to help you shoot more Elk during any time of the hunting season. This Elk is designed around how an Elk would actually look while in the wild, making the realistic pose much more effective than just a standard decoy.
This decoy is made from a brown material, and has the realistic joints and ears, giving you the necessary detail to be an effective decoy.
Every decoy owner knows decoys can sometimes be a bit heavy; however, this decoy only weighs 33 ounces, including the leg poles. Furthermore, It does not fold up, but it is easy to transport.
Cost and Value
This decoy is priced extremely fairly given the nature of how realistic and lightweight it is. Furthermore, it allows you to blend it into nature for a more cohesive aesthetic.
5. Dream Team Buck and Doe
Easy to set up
This Pair of decoys from Montana Decoy includes both a buck and doe, so you can choose which decoy is best for your needs. Both of these decoys come with a whitetail, to help blend in with most deer out in nature.
Two for the price of one
Instead of getting one deer you are getting two! Having this feature allows you to have double the reinforcements when you are trying to find the catch of the day while hunting. Nonetheless, both of these decoys fold flat, so you can easily store them when they are not in use, while also being able to set them up in no time.
Why use them for one specific time of year when you can use them all-year-round? These decoys can be used during any time of the hunting season, in order to maximize their use.
Cost and Value
Keeping in mind, that you are receiving two products for the price of one, we can effectively say you're getting a high-quality product for an exceptional price.
6. MONTANA DECOY Antelope Buck and Doe Combo
Two for the price of one
Easy to carry and fold up
Can be seen from afar without any issues
When handling you need to be extremely gentle or the decoys will break as they are a bit fragile
When it comes to hunting having a decoy is always a great idea. Not just because it will attract more animals to hunt but due to how convenient they can be. This decoy, in particular, is quite interesting to the eye and other animals because it’s a two in one. You are not only getting an extremely realistic antelope buck, but you are also getting an eating doe as well. By having this realistic pairing, you will be receiving a new form of attracting more deer to your hunting grounds.
Easy to Carry
One of the very first things you want to consider when purchasing a decoy is how easy it will be to carry. The main reason for this being the lighter it is the better it will be for you to travel with it. This combo decoy is not only extremely lightweight but its also easy to set up. Having this feature allows you to move around with it as many times as you would like without feeling like you have a burden to carry along the way.
When selecting your decoy, you want to go as traditional, as aesthetically pleasing as possible, especially when you want to attract your prey from a close range. This set is extremely realistic from close or afar. Having this feature allows you to get a close-range when selecting your prey. Simply set it up and wait while nearby animals become attracted to your decoy. Furthermore, both decoys fold to fit perfectly in your backpack or hunting bag
Cost & Value
As for the cost and value, you want to take into consideration that you are getting two products for the price of one. Therefore, the pricing is a bit on the higher end but with good reason. You are getting quality, easy to carry, decoys that get the job done while being aesthetically pleasing.
7. Miss Muley by Montana Decoy
Easily Cinches onto Backpack
Included lightweight Leg Poles
A Bit Flimsy
Miss Muley is designed to give you a leg up in your hunt of the Mule Deer. While these big animals can seemingly be dense when it comes to running away from hunters, old bucks can sometimes seem incredibly wily and hard to find. That's where Miss Muley is designed to help. Rutting season can bring out the stupid in even the oldest smartest buck and this is one's a looker. It's big enough to show up in the field and surprisingly realistic so if you're in the quest for a big horned buck this might just be the hunting partner you need.
Mules are big, and so is this decoy. And it's size is going to help you get the job done. But it's not much of a burden in the field. It folds up easily and stows away just as easily in a backpack.
2D Lifelike Photo
It does help that this stand is a photo of an actual Mule Deer. We believe realism counts.
Cost and Value
This one's a steal. Cheap, lightweight, mobile and effective. It's got all the adjectives we want in any product. But really it's not just about the prices because cheap doesn't matter if the thing doesn't work. We don't think that'll be a problem with Miss Muley.
8. MONTANA DECOY Estrus Betty
Easy to travel with
Comes in a sitting position for easy attraction
Customers complained the item did not appear as study as they thought.
In the 8th spot, we have a uniquely done decoy. If you already have a multitude of decoys in your bag, it could be time to pick this one up. Measuring at 13 inches in height and 10 inches in length when folded this doe is perfect for those that want something that will attract deer yet won’t be heavy to carry around and maneuver.
Whitetail deer is one of the most popular and sought hunting animals, as this species can easily be found on hunting grounds. However, while they can be found easily attracting them is a completely different story. To attract them, you want to bring a whitetail decoy to the scene. This decoy is perfect for doing just that! Mainly due to its sitting position. By having a sitting position, it appears almost as if your deer is peeing. By having this feature, it makes other deer want to get up close and smell it. Doing so gives you an advantage as your target will quickly be right where you need it.
Due to many having to travel to hunting grounds, you want and need a lightweight item that will get the job done. This decoy is great for traveling because of how transportable it is. It's easy to move, while still being reliable and durable. The key is packing it up and taking it with you anywhere you need.
Cost & Value
When it comes to the cost and value of this item, it is priced exceptionally well. This is mainly due to the bargain you are getting with this item. It's easy to travel with appears very realistic and its priced exceptionally well. A win-win for all.
9. Mule Deer Doe Decoy
Weighs less than a pound
Can be placed in multiple areas
Customer service was not the best
Coming at our second to last but currently not least we have the Mule Deer Doe Decoy by Heads Up a unique little decoy that gets the job done without all the frills others on our list have. This is one of the simpler designs that we offer, but it gets the job done the right way!
Can be Placed Anywhere
Do not be discouraged by the size of this decoy, although a bit smaller it is mighty in fact it can be placed anywhere that has a stand including your bow. This specific product was constructed to help lure solitary bucks that are looking for company but have not found it just yet.
One of the best features this decoy has to offer is how easy it is to be stored. It can be put any in any bag or carry on you take with you while you go hunting. The main reason for this being, it weighs less than 1 pounds, therefore, storage and transportation is a breeze.
Cost and Value
When it comes to pricing this one is valued at a mid-range price point, allowing you to purchase an item that is right in the middle of high end and low end but is constructed with excellent materials.
10. Dream Doe Whitetail Decoy (4-(Pack))
4 products for the price of one
Large in size
For our last place, we wanted to bring something for those that would like a collection of decoys instead of just one. This pack of 4 realistic deer by Montana Decoy brings forth identical whitetail does that will attract even the most doubtful deer. There is just something about them that feels extremely realistic and versatile.
4 For the Price of One
Instead of purchasing one at a time you have the ability to purchase a pack of four, which allows you to decide how many you would like displayed and which ones you want to take on your next hunting trip. The idea is you can have one or two out and hide the others away or you can display them all at the same time and attract even more deer.
Easy to Install
Each of the deer from this set comes with preinstalled sticks that allow you to safely plant them into the ground. Having this feature allows you to simply plant them and go. No need for instructions or difficult situations at all.
Cost and Value
Keeping in mind that you are getting 4 large, life-size products, these are one of the most expensive items on this guide. However, when you take into consideration all that you are receiving the price makes complete sense.
Criteria Used for Evaluation
The type of decoy you choose will make or break your hunt. Traditional deer decoys are a sound option. Renowned for their ease of use it's almost as simple as setting it up and forgetting it. Your traditional deer decoy can work particularly well in densely wooded areas. The obscurity of the surrounding trees will help to keep your game from noticing its immobility.
The most redeeming aspect of the traditional deer decoy is hands down the reliability they offer. During a hunt, the last thing you want is a decoy you rely heavily on breaking with no way to quickly replace it. Each of the traditional decoys featured on this best of the list is very reliable and will withstand a significant amount of abuse from regular use.
With a hunt taking place in some of the most remote regions imaginable, portability is a vital trait needed in any good deer decoy. Traditional decoys can weigh in excess of 15 pounds making dragging them out to your blind more difficult. With this in mind, the traditional decoys I have chosen for this best of the list are all less than five pounds in overall weight.
While your average deer's sense of sound is about the same as your standard human sense of sound their ability to move their ears allows them to pinpoint precisely where any unnatural noises are originating. Traditional deer decoys, with their simple design and immobility, are perfect for ensuring that your decoy won't cause any noises you don't want them to make. Furthermore, due to their silent nature, traditional decoys are ideal for using sound emitters and calling while using them. All of the traditional decoys on this list are virtually noise-free.
While traditional deer decoys are great options they can be limiting. Their immobility is a double-edged sword that can also cause deer stare. When any deer is staring at something for too long the entire herd will take notice and become more cautious and vigilantly scan their surroundings for anything that is out of the ordinary. In trying to combat the dreaded stare a few of these decoys bob with the wind causing small movements.
The movement of a decoy is a very important aspect to consider. Deer are intelligent animals and will notice if the movement of a decoy seems abnormal. A decoy that can mimic realistic movements can mean all the difference in your hunt, and the listed decoys are very capable of accommodating that need.
Deer like many different animals use sounds to communicate with one another. Being able to draw in your game with lifelike deer grunts can help you immeasurably in finding that trophy deer you're looking for. Some of the decoys singled out in this list feature call emitters making a more authentic appearance.
The wilderness can be treacherous and unforgiving and decoys can and will often be targeted by other outdoorsmen that are unaware of your blind. No matter the reason a deer decoy needs to offer replacement parts so should it become damaged it can be repaired. Various decoys on this list were picked for their ability to be repaired or replaced.
Mechanical decoys are very versatile and compliment many of your general needs. While they do provide natural movement and calls they can also produce some irregular sounds as well. Any piece’s that collide while moving can make a noticeable sound and with a decoys sole purpose being to draw in your game you need a quiet option. Each of the decoys on this best of the list was selected because they produce no unnatural noises.
The appearance of your decoy determines how your game will approach it and can affect where you place your decoy. Decoys that utilize a full legged design are very true to life representation of the deer and can be placed in open fields. However full legged models while embodying a lifelike, authentic, approach can be unstable on uneven surfaces. This imbalance can also generate a fair bit of synthetic noise while moving with the wind.
Some of the decoys included in this best of list use pole legs. Placing these in taller vegetation makes them blend into the area more effectively while allowing them to be placed on rough terrain and move with the wind freely. Pole legged decoys tend to be lighter in weight offering a unique added benefit.
With the coloring of your decoy being as important as the gender of the decoy, it is critical to have decoys that accurately matches the coat of your game during your season. For a diversity of options, I picked only decoys that offered both color options and use appropriate color schemes.
Hunting trips can be quite costly, from food and boarding to tags and all the apparel a key trait I strove to balance was affordability. Additionally, I wanted to pick decoys that offered more features over a higher-priced decoy that offered less functionality.
Over time regardless of the product, things tend to break down. Repeated use and even bad luck can result in damage to your deer decoy. A manufacturer's warranty can help to keep you satisfied and ensures that the product will work or be replaced. Furthermore, it increases the value of the decoy you're buying. The higher-rated decoys on this list featured better warranties.
Hunting is an amazing sport with unique and difficult challenges. Unfortunately, though the seasons are few and far between. A decoy that can be stored easily and occupy minimal space was a primary focus when choosing the five best deer decoys.
Expert Interviews & Opinions
More than any other animal, the location of your decoy is vital towards the success of the decoy. If you put your decoy too far out from where you are, then it won’t draw any animals near you. In fact, if you put a decoy in the wrong location, you could actually keep deer away from your position. Typically, the best places to set up your deer decoy are on the edges of any fields, as well as perched upon any hills. The decoy needs to be set up in a location where deer will actually see it, and not just happen to stumble upon it. The higher the deer decoy is set up, or the closer it can be placed to a high traffic area, the better success you will have.
Another aspect to ensure you have a deer decoy that works is making sure the scent is set up properly. If the deer decoy has any kind of human odor on it, that odor will drive deer away faster than almost anything else. You need to ensure your decoy is covered in the proper deer or doe scent, to help bring the other deer over to it. If the scent is wrong, then your decoy will not perform at the level you want and will hurt your chances of finding the deer you want to shoot.
Make sure to clean your decoy. While it might seem like a good idea to keep your decoy dirty and just packed away while they’re not in use. It’s the opposite, keeping your decoy clean will benefit you in the long run and they will last longer and can be used for a longer period. Keep in mind, if you are working with a paper decoy cleaning it is not necessary, all you will need to do is store it properly to ensure you do not break it along the way.
Other Factors to Consider
The season in which you’re hunting can dramatically affect your deer decoy needs. From the choice of deer gender to the option of scent marking, the season makes the choice of what you can use for you. The season even affects the color choice of your decoy based upon the molting of the deer during your hunting season.
A deer's coat is very adaptable, it provides camouflage and helps them to maintain their body temperatures. During the summer season, a deer's coat will turn a reddish color and become more thin to help it stay cool. In fall a deer’s coat will go through a molting process caused by hormones changing which turns their coats a faded gray or brown color. Interestingly the environment a deer lives in can also affect this color-changing process. A deer that lives in a wooded region will have a deeper color whereas a deer in a more agricultural region tends to take on a much lighter color.
The question of the ages, which gender deer decoy should you select? No one really has a definite answer and it often comes down to which gender you are trying to attract. Some hunters will even use both in order to ensure they can draw in their game. Most of the decoys on this list include the option to select a decoy of either gender.
With a sense of smell that is better than your average dog, a deer is capable of noticing the slightest changes in scent in their environments. Right out of the box deer decoys can possess a man-made and unnatural scent. Scenting a decoy is a phenomenal way to guarantee your decoys scent won't be the reason your game avoids your hunting area. A few of the decoys I included on this list have options to add scent pads directly onto the decoys.
Frequently Asked Questions
q: Are these decoys weather protected?
Over time and with enough wear, the product will eventually fade. Most of these deer decoys are made with materials that are very resistant to inclement weather making them suitable for using any climate.
q: Are the antlers removable?
Removable antlers are a great way to quickly adjust the gender of your decoys. On this list, there are a few options that do support removable antlers and include plugs to fill the hole that is left behind from the antlers mounting point.
q: Can any fit in a backpack?
While lightweight and very portable these decoys are sized to replicate a life-sized deer. These generally won’t fit in a standard backpack but may fit into a larger rucksack.
q: Are they rain/waterproof?
While the products used to produce these decoys vary wildly, they are all rather resistant to water and rain.
q: Do they have problems standing in heavy winds?
The deer decoys are organized from the most stable to the least stable on this list with number 5 being the one that is the most concern when it comes to wind resistance.