How big is a deer’s brain size?

This article covers information about how big is a deer’s brain. It also covers information about the deer’s brain and physiology in detail. The article will also highlight some interesting facts about deers. The article also answers frequently asked questions in the end.

How big is a deer’s brain size?

Deers have about 1/6th the size of a brain as compared to humans. Deers have a stronger sense of smell as compared to humans. Their sense of smell is as strong as dogs. 

While canines have 300 million olfactory receptors, deers have approximately 297 million receptors. This empowers them to find food as well as to detect any presence of predators in their immediate environment. Whereas humans only have 7 million olfactory receptors. 

Deers have keen senses of smell and vision, and hence they have high levels of intelligence. Their intelligence can be observed in the way deers are able to sense if there are hunters around even before hunters can sense them. Deers that have hyper-vigilance and a wary sense, both males and females, tend to survive hunting seasons successfully. Deers are also able to jump 8 feet high. 

Deers and Feelings

All animals, including deers, have feelings. Among other emotions, deers also have the emotion of grief. They grieve for their fellow deers that have passed away. Research has found that deers are able to enact behaviours indicating mourning the loss of fellow deers of their herd. However, when we consider all the literature on deer emotions, the processing of grief by deers is still conflicted.

Whitetailed Deers

The standing shoulder heights of white-tailed deer stand between 2’8”-3’, which is around 81 to 91 centimetres. The head-to-body length of a white-tailed deer range from 3’1” to 7’2”, which estimates to be 95 to 220 centimetres. The average weight of white-tailed ranges from 36 kgs to 113 kgs, or 80 lb to 250 lb. Their lifespan is estimated to be around 6 to 15 years (Hamir et al., 2011).

White-tailed deers are intelligent and they have sharp memories. They tend to learn from experiences and are adaptable in nature. White-tail deers have complex family ties, and they tend to sense when they are exposed to danger and take action swiftly.

What kind of skull does a deer have?

The skulls of deers have no upper incisors. They have similar cheek teeth identical to each other that are designed for grinding. 

The male deer’s skull can be recognised with ease by antlers. In case antlers are not present, the short and upwardly directed pedicel is said to be cut flat and pointing backwards, which can help one recognise it.

What kind of vision does a deer have?

White-tailed deers have an incredibly efficient sense of vision, smell, and hearing. They have excellent peripheral eyes because their eyes are located at the sides of their head. This enables them to see everything around their body. 

White-tailed deers also have superior light-detecting cells as compared to humans, and this permits them to have a good night vision. Their sense of smell is commendable, being a thousand times better than humans’ sense of smell. Their hearing outweighs their eyesight, where they can detect even the softest sounds in their environments.

Interesting Facts about Deers:

  • Deers are social animals. They walk and move around in herds. Deers usually have a dominant male leader. This male leader looks over female deers in the herd. Their herds can have up to 10,000 deers.
  • Deers communicate with each other uniquely. They communicate with each other using visual, vocal, and chemical means. When we say chemical means, we mean that deers have scents produced in various parts of their body which give information about their physique, sex, and their social status.
  • Deers practice both monogamy and polygamy. During the mating season, when they are short on mates, they engage in polygamy.
  • The gestation period of deers lasts between 180 to 240 days. The children of deers are called fawns. A female deer gives birth to only one or two fawns at once. Birthing three fawns at once are considered to be very rare.
  • Fawns do not emit detectable scents. Predators may not be able to detect fawns in their environment, which makes it easier for them to hide.
  • Chinese water deers do not have antlers. They are the only deer species that do not have antlers.
  • Most deers prefer living in the wild from birth to death. The only exception to this is the reindeer, which is the only domestic deer.
  • Some deer species are endangered, these include; the hog deer, Persian fallow deer, Chinanteco deer, Bawean deer and Calamian deers. The Pere David deer ceases to exist in the wild population and can only be found in caged zoos. 
  • Deers are an important part of the ecosystem and are even important for the human food-chain cycle.
  • Deer paintings have been found in several caves, which means that deers and humans have been coexisting with each other since the very start of human life.
  • Deers are sensitive to feelings and can feel pain.
  • Mother deers do cry to their offspring like dogs and cats do when they are in pain.
  • A disturbing fact is that female deer can naturally digest their fetus in harsh conditions like malnutrition.
  • Deers cannot perceive the colour neon orange, they are colour blind to it. Thus, many hunters wear neon orange jackets when they go shooting, so the deers do not see them and hide.
  • There are many colour variations within deers. Some deers are light coloured, while others are dark. Fawns have spots that protect them from predators.
  • The antlers of deers grow really fast. The tissues that make up the antlers of the deer are considered to be the fastest-growing tissue on the planet.
  • You cannot eat the brain, eyes, spinal cord, tonsils, or lymph nodes of any deer. This can make you very sick. Eating deers that appear to be sick can also prove to be deadly.
  • Deers remember faces and can recognise them even at a distance. Deers tend to ignore you if they recognise you as a non-threat. They run away and hide if they find you suspicious or dangerous.
  • Many wildlife scientists have confirmed that deers listen to music carefully and even enjoy it.
  • Deers are also excellent at recognising voices along with the faces of people. They have excellent vision and hearing abilities.
  • Deers sleep only 4.5 hours a day, and their REM sleep lasts only about 30 minutes.

What happens when you shoot a deer in the head?

The shot’s angle should be considered while deciding where you should shoot the deer. A well-executed brain shot can drop a deer immediately. When the bullet is put through the deer’s brain, it disrupts all the functions of the deer and the deer will lose its consciousness immediately.


This article covered information about how big is a deer’s brain. It also covered information about the deer’s brain and physiology in detail. The article also highlighted some interesting facts about deers.

Frequently Asked Questions: How big is a deer’s brain size?

Do deers have Cloven hooves?

Yes, deers have cloven hooves. Cloven hoofs mean that the animal’s hooves are split into two toes. 

What is the normal brain size?

The normal brain size is approximately 15 centimetres.

How big is the average size of a human brain?

The weight of the human brain is about 3 lbs or 1.4 kilograms. It makes up around 2% of the human body weight. It is about 15 centimetres wide.

Does a big head mean a big brain?

The size of the head depends upon several factors such as the muscularity of the head, and the thickness of the bones surrounding it. However, there is the likelihood that a bigger head may be equivalent to a bigger brain. However, according to Hurlburt (1996), is not necessary that people with bigger brains are smarter than those people who have smaller brains.


Hamir, A. N., Greenlee, J. J., Nicholson, E. M., Kunkle, R. A., Richt, J. A., Miller, J. M., & Hall, M. (2011). Experimental transmission of chronic wasting disease (CWD) from elk and white-tailed deer to fallow deer by intracerebral route. Canadian Journal of Veterinary Research, 75(2), 152-156.

Hurlburt, G. R. (1996). Relative brain size in recent and fossil amniotes: determination and interpretation (p. 250). Toronto: University of Toronto.