by Joe Gennaro of Joe's Hunting Page

Although calling Whitetail Deer has become very popular in recent years, the big questions to most hunters, both new and experienced, are: 

  1. when to use these calls, and 
  2. what do they mean. 
Whitetail deer have a language and communicate to other deer. The first sound a fawn hears is the grunt of it's mother, this is a contact call that all deer buck and doe respond to contact calls all year long. Below is a short description of deer vocalizations and audio reproductions of these sounds. 
Non Aggressive Deer Calls
Contact Calls: This sound is a doe's way of locating other deer of her family group . This call can be used all year long. 
Doe Grunt: Grunts are a doe's way of saying come here , also to call her fawns at feeding time . It is critical to keep the call soft as a loud grunt is too aggressive of a call. 
Buck Grunt: A buck grunt is a deeper pitch than a doe grunt , it means the same thing . The older the buck the deeper the tone. 
Tending Grunt: As the buck chases the doe as the rut approaches he is frustrated, and makes a series of soft grunts while trailing her . It's the bucks way of asking her to stop so he can be breed with her. 
Buck Bawl: This sound's a lot like a calf bawl , but it is a series of buck bleats . This signals the bucks desire for company. 
Sparring: This is a non aggressive and social behaviour that all bucks do after shedding their velvet . This is when the bucks learn who   can whip the other . This process does not prevent serious fights later on during the rut.
Rage Grunts: This is the sound that a buck makes during the courtship when the doe stops running , but won't let the buck breed her . It's a non aggressive and frustration call by him. 
Estrus Bleat: This is the sound that a Doe makes to signal that her breeding time is near. 
Breeding Bellow: This is the sound that a Doe makes to signal that she ready to breed RIGHT NOW.
Aggressive Deer Calls
Sniff: Deer make this sound to intimidate other deer and prevent fights. This call is often made by a rut- crazed buck when confronted with a rival. This sound can send smaller buck running from the area.
Wheeze: Another rut crazed Bucks sound to intimidate other deer and prevent fights when confronted with a rival. This sound can also send smaller buck running from the area.
 Aggressive Rattling: This is a short aggressive rattling sequence to possibly lure in less aggressive, but curious buck, as well as the local dominant whitetail buck of the area. To make this sound like a real fight sniffs, wheezes and grunts have also been thrown in for added effect.
These vocalizations are the courtesy of Joe's Hunting Page
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