How far do deer travel

Understanding the deer movement and distance traveled can help a hunter to better prepare for his hunt. In the article, I will be covering the amount of distance traveled by a deer under different situation to provide a comprehensive look at a deer’s movement.


How far do deer travel in a day for food?

Deer tend to stick close to their home and seldom travel very far. According to collar tracking studies done, it is found that does can do about 60-70 aces while bucks can do a wider range: from 150 to 450 aces. As a rule of thumb, they will probably not travel more than 1 day in search for food from their home grounds.


How far do deer travel after being shot?

The distance that I talked about assumes that the deer is healthy and such. However, if you manage to hit a deer then it drastically changes the amount of distance covered.  The actual distance it can travel after being shot depends on where it is being shot.

  • Single lung area: If you manage to hit the lung, it is likely the the deer can travel between 100 and 800 yards. In fact, deer that has its one lung punctuated is still able to survive depending on which part of the lung you hit. This is why sometimes you need to some time to track down the deer using its blood trail as it can travel pretty far even from a lung shot. If you need help, here is my review of the best blood tracking lights for 2016.
  • Double lung area: Once you manage to hit the two lungs of a deer, then it will probably last no more than 12-14 seconds. That is the time it has to run away if it has strength to move. Usually, this will be than 100 yards.
  • Neck area: A neck shot, if executed perfectly, will kill the deer in an instant and stop it in its track.
  • Spine area: If you injured the spine of the deer fairly extensive, it will die almost instantly and stop where it was hit. For a not so perfect hit, the deer might be able to travel for quite a distance, which is difficult to estimate as it depends on badly injured the spine area is from the shot.
  • Heart area: For a heart shot, the distance traveled will be much shorter i.e. under 200 yards and probably less if you got a good shot in.


How far do deer travel for water

If you intend to hunt a deer when it is traveling for water, then you should know it usually doesn’t travel far from its home ground. Usually, it travels at night to drink from ponds that are not obvious from the usually water source. The distance traveled is usually between 1.5 to 3 miles

In terms of water requirements, the different deer breeds will require different water consumption. For example, deers in Oregon tend to require only 0.8 gallons of water per day so you will not much opportunity trying to shot when it is thirsty.  In terms of timing, it only drink 1-2 times a time.



Deers’ movement pattern can be hard to nail down. Hopefully the information presented here will give more insights into how far they will move under different situations.

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