15 Best Deer Calls For Tagging Any Whitetail

best deer calls

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The best deer calls produce sounds realistic enough to fool even the wariest of deer – plain and simple. Whether you’re using a grunt call, doe bleat call, or rattling antlers, realism is the key. And that’s exactly what you get with the calls listed below.
Deer Grunt Calls
Doe Bleat Calls
Rattling Antlers
When To Use Deer Calls

Best Deer Calls - Top Picks

(Full List Below)

Best Grunt Call

Best Doe Bleat Call

Best Rattling Antlers

  • Dominant buck calls
  • Perfect for challenging big bucks
  • Custom bellows tube
  • Designed for dynamic sound control
  • Anti-stick reed: Ideal for cold weather
  • Machined Acrylic

   Read more

  • Perfect for the rut
  • Imitates and doe in estrus
  • Personally had success using The Can
  • Simple to use

   Read more

  • Bone-core technology for realistic sounds
  • Two-full-rack design
  • Black for concealment
  • Free Deer Society app tips
  • Made in the USA

   Read more

Best Deer Calls - Full List

Deer Grunt Calls

  • Dominant buck calls
  • Perfect for challenging big bucks
  • Custom bellows tube
  • Designed for dynamic sound control
  • Anti-stick reed: Ideal for cold weather
  • Machined Acrylic

The Alpha Pro is a highly functional grunt tube specifically designed for dominant buck vocalizations. This is a call ideally suited for calling in mature bucks.

It has a machined acrylic barrel, which houses a uniquely designed internal reed system, creating aggressive grunts to challenge a dominant buck’s authority.

This deer call incorporates a special weighted anti-stick reed, allowing it to continue operating perfectly in cold-weather hunting, as it resists reed lock up due to condensation.

It’s one of the best deer calls for drawing in not just bucks, but mature bucks.

  • Modislide for Instant Sound Adjustment
  • Mimics Buck, Doe, and Fawn Sounds
  • Freeze Resistant for Cold Weather Use
  • Free Mobile App for Instructional Videos
  • Dual-Layered Technology for Realistic Sounds
  • Directional Calling Capability

The Illusion Systems Extinguisher Deer Call simplifies the process of calling deer by giving you one tool to use on both bucks and does.

I can say from personal use that this thing sounds ultra-realistic and so quick and easy to change from buck to doe to fawn calls.

This deer call uses their patented Modislide, which offers a full range of adjustability to mimic bleats and grunts of bucks and does instantly. Its dual-layered technology creates realistic sounds and allows you to create sounds directionally by bending the sound tube from one side to the other.

This grunt tube is resistant to freezing, which is huge when the whether turns and you’ve introduced spit in the call or it’s rainy. The slider can simply be manipulated to keep the call from being inoperable due to freezing.

The Extinguisher Deer Call is one of the best deer calls from any manufacturer. Check out the video below for proof.

  • Easy to use, requires little air
  • Range of grunts from whisper to loud
  • Includes Inflexor Tube for dynamic sound control
  • Integrated snort wheeze for buck vocalizations
  • Carefully hand-constructed and tuned

The Intimidator grunt call is designed for super easy operation and requires minimal air to produce realistic sounds.

It’s capable of producing a variety of grunt sounds, from soft whispers to high volume calls, which gives you a lot of options, depending on the situation.

The included Inflexor Tube enhances sound control, making it more dynamic and versatile. This call also has an integrated snort wheeze, which gives you another great option during the rut when grunting at a mature buck won’t get him to break your way. 

The overall sound quality is super realistic due to the fact that its hand-tuned. Woodhaven is known for creating some of the best turkey calls in the world. Their deer calls are built to the exact same standards.

  • Versatile Call
  • Flex technology for tone inflection
  • X-Glide: Quick sound change, prevents freeze-ups
  • X-Glide aids confident, diverse calls
  • Soft, silent construction

The Flextone Extractor Deer Call offers a lot of versatility, imitating both mature and young buck grunts, doe grunts, bleats, and fawn bawls.

It also includes a snort-wheeze chamber for challenging dominant bucks when a grunt just isn’t cutting it.

Its molded throat tube, with Flextone Technology, creates realism in tones and allows tonal changes by squeezing the flexible hose.

The X-Glide design provides a quick transition between sounds while preventing freezing in colder weather. The best deer calls create realistic tones, provide versatility in being able to imitate bucks, does, and fawns, and can do it all quickly on the fly. The Flextone Extractor checks all the boxes.

  • Capable of directional calling
  • Adjustable O-ring for various grunts and bleats
  • Simple, user-friendly design
  • Lanyard included
  • Wooden barrel

The Buck Commander Grunt Call is about as simple as it gets. It’s designed specifically to replicate authentic whitetail vocalizations and gives you options for more than just low buck grunts.

An adjustable O-ring is integrated into the call, allowing you to create a diverse range of calls – from rutting buck grunts to fawn bleats.

Its simplistic design, coupled by just how quick and easy it is to use, makes it a great choice for both newer hunters and veterans who like gear that’s reliable and quick to put into action when things start to heat up.

It includes a lanyard and a wooden barrel. It’s one of the best deer calls for those on a budget, made by the Duck Dynasty boys at Duck Commander.

  • Emulates young buck vocalizations
  • More compact than other models
  • Cold-weather calling with anti-stick reed
  • Acrylic barrel, American molded tone board

The Phelps Omega Deer Call is designed for specifically mimicking young buck vocalizations. Phelps is best known for their incredibly realistic-sounding Elk calls, but they’re also working to create the best deer calls as well.

Phelps has joined up with the MeatEater crew in recent years, adding to their credibility in the industry. With a more compact design than its predecessors, these deer calls are more portable and convenient than ever.

Its standout feature is the special weighted anti-stick reed, built for reliable cold weather calling, preventing the grunter from freezing up with condensation or spit.

This grunt tube is constructed from a durable acrylic barrel with a mold-injected tone board for years of high-quality calling, no matter how harsh the environments you carry it into.

  • Each call handcrafted
  • White oak and walnut barrels available
  • Directional calling with bendable tube
  • Change tone by extending tube

If you haven’t heard the Okayest Hunter Podcast, seen them on social media, or watched their show on CarbonTV, you’re missing out! They’ve built a popular lifestyle hunting brand around the idea of just being okay, using your tag how you want to, and having a ton of fun in the process.

Their Shooter Buck Grunt Tube has a beautifully handcrafted barrel made from your choice of white oak or walnut, and it offers different tones, as well as directional calling with its extendable and bendable tube.

If you’re looking for a nice new grunt tube and want to support the guys who are supporting the hunting community, grab a Shooter Buck Grunt Tube.

  • 6-in-1 functionality with adjustable reed assembly
  • Capable of producing loud, throaty grunts
  • Expandable hose allows for varied tones
  • Directional calling

I used the Primos Trophy Grunter deer grunt call for a couple of seasons early on in my hunting career.

It doesn’t produce the most realistic tones relative to some of the more expensive calls with rubber tubes and acrylic or wooden barrels, but it definitely works.

I called in many bucks with this grunt tube before retiring it for an Illusion Systems Extinguisher when the reeds locked up stopped working.

If you’re looking for a decent call that works and is super easy on the wallet, give this call a try. It’s been around for so many years because it’s one of the best deer calls that doesn’t break the bank.

Doe Bleat Calls

  • Perfect for the rut
  • Imitates and doe in estrus
  • Personally had success using The Can
  • Simple to use

Just like a grunt tube is necessary during the rut, The Can by Primos is as well. I’ve personally called in multiple bucks using my Can.

One of my most exciting rut hunts ended with a filled tag because of this tried and true deer call. It’s super simple to use, and can be the difference during October and November. This call has been one of the top-selling, best doe bleat calls for decades, and for good reason.

It works.

  • Authentic doe bleat sounds
  • Attracts both does and rutting bucks
  • Ideal for decoy setup usage
  • Durable Acrylic Barrel construction
  • Injection Molded Exhaust for clear sound

The Phelps DOA Doe Bleat Call from produces realistic doe bleat vocalizations, hence the name. It’s hand-tuned, so it doesn’t leave the factory without that natural doe bleat tone.

Made with an acrylic barrel and injection molded exhaust, this call is durability and delivers a clear, resonant sound.

It’s an ideal tool that every hunter should have in their arsenal for drawing in both does and rutting bucks, whether you’re targeting specific bucks or using a decoy setup to grab the attention of any buck.

It’s the product of countless hours of research into doe vocalizations, designed to appeal to any buck cruising for does.

One of the best doe bleat calls to use during the rut, and it’s sitting at a great price point.

  • Produces short, high-pitched bleats
  • Attracts bucks with does on lockdown
  • Works as jack rabbit predator call
  • Machined Acrylic Housed Reed
  • Made in the USA

The Phelps Fawn In Distress deer call delivers shorter, high-pitched bleats, which is great for drawing in does with locked down bucks. When other fawn bleats and grunt calls aren’t getting it done, a fawn in distress call can be the ticket to a filled tag.

Plus, the machined acrylic reed means this thing is going to last. Another great thing about this call is that with increased air pressure, it doubles as a jack rabbit predator call.

The best deer calls aren’t always of the general-purpose variety. Sometimes you have to break out a specific call for a specific situation to get it done. 

Rattling Antlers

  • Bone-core technology for realistic sounds
  • Two-full-rack design
  • Black for concealment
  • Free Deer Society app tips
  • Made in the USA

The Illusion Systems Black Rack is seen by many bowhunters as the best rattling antlers not just because of their realistic sound, which comes from their Bone Core technology, but also because each half is a full set, which gives you the ability to work both ends at the same time to create wicked fight scenes.

Unlike most others, they come in black, which aids in staying concealed. You also have access to a free Deer Society mobile app, which includes professional instructional videos for rattling tips and tactics. These rattling antlers are made in the USA for hunters by hunters, and are one of the best deer calls to use during the Rut.

  • Easy to pack in
  • Polymer battle sticks create natural sound
  • Rubber-flex bag for maximum volume 
  • Extendable cord allows customization
  • Designed for easy use

The Flextone Battle Bag is an awesome alternative to traditional rattling antlers. I’ve been using them for several years. Rattle bags like this one are super easy to pack in.

By using a rattle bag, you drastically cut down on the size and weight of what you’re bringing in the woods with you and you don’t run the risk of accidentally clanking together a set of antlers while you’re walking in or climbing up the stand.

I don’t think they sound quite as realistic as a set of antlers, but you can still find success with them against bucks that haven’t been rattled to a ton.

Their polymer “battle sticks” it mimic the resonant sounds of antlers smashing together. Its rubber-flex bag design aids in producing clear, natural antlers sounds with maximum volume. You can shake the bag with one hand or smack and roll it between your hands for louder, harsher fight scenes.

It’s super easy to use and has a draw string that allows you to use it one-handed or open it up and remove sticks to change the volume and sounds. As far as rattle bags go, you can’t beat the Flextone Battle Bag.

  • Realistic sound 
  • Redesigned grip for easy use and control
  • Non-reflective brown color
  • Easily stacks
  • Hex grip for better control
  • Prevents finger pinch 

These Flextone Battle Bones rattling antlers are another great full-antler option. Like the Black Rack featured above, both sides of each half can be worked together to create more natural fight sequences.

The redesigned grip offers more control, while its non-reflective brown color helps to keep attention off of them when bucks get close.  As far as rattling antlers go, these have a more compact design, making them easier to stack and pack in.

Their recessed handle design also prevents finger pinch. If you’re looking for the best rattling antlers that pack in easy, give the Battle Bones a try.

  • One-hand operation design
  • Hardwood rods for authentic sound
  • Rubberized netting for better grip
  • Adjustable lanyard
  • Silencer strap for quiet transport

The Ruttin’ Buck Rattling Bag is another extremely cost-effective way to rattle in bucks during the pre-rut and rut. With a design that caters to one-handed operation, these rattling antlers are great for hunters at age stage.

The bag incorporates hardwood rods, which help to echo the natural tones of clashing antlers.

One great thing about this rattling bag is the silencer strap because whether you’re carrying it in your pack or pocket, those wooden rods need to be completely silent and not banging against each other. 

It’s another good rattle bag option to consider if you don’t want the size and inconvenience of full-size rattling antlers.

Choosing The Best Deer Calls For Each Situation

Every deer call isn’t going to be right for every situation you find yourself in on a hunt. The best deer calls may only be used in certain situations, such as a grunt call during the early season, or a set of rattling antlers during the pre-Rut, or a snort wheeze during the Rut. 

Making sure you’ve got the right calls for different situations is critical to being ready no matter the time of year.

When To Use Deer Calls

Knowing when to use deer calls is just as important as knowing how to use deer calls. Using them at the wrong time can hurt your chances more than not using them at all.

But use the right call at the right time, and it could turn an otherwise actionless hunt into the most exciting hunt you have all season.

Knowing what deer calls to use and when takes a bit of experience to fully understand, but take a look at these general guidelines below to get you started.

Calling During The Early Season

Deer grunt calls are great for light use during the early season to bring in a curious buck because bucks are in bachelor groups during the early season. Doe grunt calls and fawn-in-distress calls are great for bringing in does during the early season as well.

It’s important to call extremely sparingly, maybe one or two grunts, spaced apart by a few seconds every 30 minutes or so.

How To Call Deer During The Rut and Pre-Rut

As the season progresses, so can your level of calling. It’s important to know how to call deer during the Rut, but let’s start with the pre-Rut. During the pre-Rut, a little more aggressive calling is acceptable when bucks are seeking and chasing does. This is when you can begin using rattling antlers with success, but leave the all-out brawls for the peak Rut.

When the Rut is in full swing, that’s also when doe bleat calls (doe in heat call) and roaring buck grunts work their best. You can blind call or blind rattle without knowing there’s a buck around, but if you can see a buck that you know can’t see you, grunting aggressively at him or snort wheezing at him is a great tactic for getting him to charge in.

If he begins scraping or rubbing his antlers in brush, don’t call again because he’s likely just getting worked up before coming your way. If he turns to leave, then you can grunt or rattle again. 

If you got his attention by only grunting without using rattling antlers, throwing in a single doe bleat can also seal the deal and bring him on over.

Calling During The Post-Rut

During the post-Rut, it’s best to leave your calls in the truck. Bucks and does alike have been called to so much prior to the post-Rut that you’re more likely to run them off by calling, especially with rattling.

Best Deer Calls For The Second Rut

In some locations where nutrition is high enough to support it, some does that weren’t bred during the first Rut will go back into estrus 28 days after their first cycle. Also, some fawn does that didn’t go into estrus during the first Rut will start their first cycle. This is known as the Second Rut.

During this time, bucks are much less susceptible calling, especially rattling, but light grunting combined with a doe In heat call can offer success. But I’d leave the rattling antlers in the truck during this period.

Best Deer Calls For Early Season

Some choose not to call much, if at all, during the early season, but calling can be a great way to bring in a curious buck or doe at the beginning of the season.

The best deer calls for the early season are definitely going to be soft grunts from any one of the deer grunt calls listed above.

The Phelps Alpha Pro and Illusion Systems Extinguisher are great options for this. With the Extinguisher, you can change to a fawn or doe grunt if you’re good with just hunting deer, both does and bucks.

In the early season, bucks are in bachelor groups, so a couple of soft grunts may bring in a buck who is just curious to see what other buck is in the area. And a higher-pitched, and shorter doe grunt or fawn-in-distress call may do the same for bringing in curious does.

Whatever you do, DO NOT CALL very much in the early season. Deer are vocal at all times of year, but they’re not always just walking around vocalizing all the time. Subtlety goes a long way with calling.

Using Deer Grunt Calls During The Rut

The pre-Rut and Rut provide some of the best opportunities for using deer grunt calls to bring in bucks. Hitting your grunt tube a few times at varying lengths and volumes every 30 minutes or so can trigger a passing buck to come in looking for a fight. 

Grunt calls are great, but during the Rut, I typically mix in some doe bleat calls from my Primos Original Can. A doe in heat call can sometimes do what no grunt call will. My 2021 Rut buck came in to a doe bleat after I saw him walking through a marsh. A few bleats separated by a few seconds a piece was all it took. Shot him at 13 yards.

Calling To Bucks During The Lockdown Phase

During the lockdown phase of the Rut, grunting at a buck will oftentimes not work to bring him your way, but hitting a fawn-in-distress can bring in the doe he’s locked down with. And who do you think follows her in?

When To Use Rattling Antlers

We can’t talk about the best deer calls without talking about rattling antlers. Rattling antlers are the most effective during the tail-end of the pre-Rut and during the Rut when testosterone levels are at their highest in bucks.

The sound of antlers clashing together signals to the dominant buck in the area that there are two other bucks fighting over a hot doe. 

It can also bring other smaller bucks in just to size up the competition. In late-September and early-October after bucks have shed their velvet, younger bucks will begin lightly sparring, finding their place in the pecking order.

Because of this, light “tickling” of the antlers on a set of rattling antlers during this period can also be effective at bringing in bucks. REMEMBER, bucks never have all-out brawls during this period, so imitating one will absolutely result in zero sightings.

When To Use A Doe In Heat Call

As I said before, a doe in heat call can sometimes bring a fired up buck in when he’s more interested in that than running off bucks. If you’ve grunted at a buck during the Rut and he isn’t responded, hit a doe in estrus call and watch his behavior. He may just come running.

How To Use Deer Calls

Learning how to use deer calls is pretty straightforward. If it’s a deer grunt call, simply blow into it, supplying enough air to create the intended vocalization. I’d recommend watching YouTube videos to see exactly how deer vocalize, so you can be practiced up before trying it during a hunt.

If it’s a set of rattling antlers, you’re not just banging them into each other. Sure, that’s part of it, but you’re trying to simulate the actual sounds, including the crashes, of two bucks fighting. Again, this can easily be found on YouTube.

If you’re using a doe in heat call, such the Primos Original Can, it depends on the style of call. For The Primos Can, you cover the small hole on the underside with your thumb or finger and simply turn it over to simulate a doe bleat.

If you’re unsure how to use deer calls that you’ve purchased, refer to the manufacturer or just do a little research online. They’re not hard to use. They just take a little practice to become proficient with.

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