Skip to Content

Do Deer Eat Mint? (All You Need to Know)

Sharing is caring!

The deer is an herbivorous animal. These mammals love to eat fresh grasses, and fresh water and they eat different herbs.

They try to avoid food with a pungent flavor. Deer can eat pinecones, pine leaves, and other tree leaves. They avoid spices with a strong flavor. Let’s see if they can eat mint.

Do deer eat mint?

Deer don’t eat mint. Mint has a strong flavor that works as a deer deterrent. Deer are generally repelled by mint leaves. The smell of mint leaves mainly peppermint keeps them away. Along with mint, deer dislikes red chili flakes, pepper, oregano, thyme, and daffodils. They love browse, mast, & grass.

Deer does eat mint. But do they eat all types of mint? Let’s find out.

Cat mint:

Cat mint can attract your cat, but it surely will deter the deer to come around. Deer have a strong sense of smell. They can sense predators by smelling their urine or blood.

That’s why they need to have a strong sensing capability. Cat mint has a strong pungent smell and that’s why deer don’t come to eat it.

Mountain mint:

Any sort of good aroma to a human nose is highly unlikely for a deer nose. About 297 million smell receptors are inside a deer’s nose. All of them help them find food and stay away from predators.

Mountain mint has the aroma that keeps deer away. Generally, all sorts of mint leaves have a strong smell. It is not pleasant to deer nose. That’s why deer cannot eat mountain mint.

Mexican mint:

Mexican mint is also known as Cuban oregano. We all know that oregano brings the best flavor to your pizza. You may also know that fresh oregano leaves have a robust scent that stays for a long time.

Like other mint leaves or aromatic plants, Mexican mint also has the power to keep the deer away. Deer cannot eat Mexican mint leaves.

Corsican mint:

Corsican mint can grow fast and spread around faster. They defuse scent like pennyroyals and if it is consumed for a large amount, it can be harmful to different animals.

The smell of this plant is not as strong, but still, the subtle smell of these leaves can be strong to the sensitive nose of deer. As Corsican mint releases scent, deer cannot eat them.

Chocolate mint:

Chocolate mint is not covered with chocolate or any processed materials. These are one of the mint species. They are loved by people, as this mint can be used in mojitos and other exotic foods.

But for deer, it is not suitable. They dislike to eat such smelly foods. Deer will not eat chocolate mint.

Do deer like to eat mint plants and leaves?

Deer don’t like to eat mint plants and leaves. Though the mint flavor is strong on the foliage. But the branch of the mint plant contains the smell. But that subtle smell will not bother most of the human nose, but it will cause strong disruption to the deer’s nose.

Deer avoids these plants. Even the smell of these mint plants keeps the deer away from other food. Deer cannot find their food for the strong pungent smell of mint plants. Mint is not harmful to deer or any other animals.

If there are any food shortages, deer will still try to eat something that is pleasant to their nose.

They will eat pine cones rather than eating mint foliage or mint plants. Pepper mints are used to keep deer away from any certain place. It is one of the natural deterrents for deer.

Do Whitetails like mint?

Almost all the deer have the same palate. All the deer are herbivores. In the winter-prone areas, they get to eat browse of big trees and they eat fruit if they get in touch with fruits. They can eat vegetables as well.

But when they don’t get good food sources during the late summer and winter, they look for different foods. At that time, they may eat mint due to hunger. However, this situation is not that regular.

Mint or any aromatic plants are disliked by deer. Whitetail deer are not different from other deer.

They love to eat like other species of deer. They love grasses, vegetables, fruits, acorns, etc. Though if they have an abundance of food, they don’t go for invading any garden or yard.

Whitetails will eat all sorts of herbs, but they will still avoid mint plants. Not only peppermint is disliked by these whitetail deer, but also, they avoid other aromatic foods.

4 reasons why deer will not eat mint

There are many reasons why deer will not eat mint. Let’s get to know them.

Not Suitable for their Taste Bud:

Deer loves food with subtle flavor. They don’t go for processed food or old food. The taste of mint leaves or mint branches is not strong.

It doesn’t have any particular taste, that is, it is not sweet or bitter. But the aroma that comes from the mint leaves is so strong to take for deer.

The aroma of mint is too harsh for deer:

Mainly the aroma of mint is harsh for deer. Deer eat almost any sort of herbs. But different herbs have different scents with them.

Basically, these herbs have a distinct smell so that these plants can keep themselves away from herbivorous animals. Deer always try to avoid aromatic plants.

Deer love other food:

Deer love fresh grasses. They love to eat fruit and vegetables. And where they don’t get enough grasses, they eat browse. Instead of their food shortages, they don’t really change their food course.

They eat exotic foods only when they don’t meet their regular diet. That’s why deer will not necessarily eat mint.

Deer don’t eat anything with a pungent smell:

As we have seen, deer don’t eat any food with any exotic pungent smell. Whether it is natural aroma or factory-made, they will choose the subtly flavored food. Anything spicy or aromatic is not suitable for them.

All types of mint plants have a distinct flavor. Whether it is chocolate mint or peppermint, deer will always avoid mint.

Does mint keep deer away?

Yes, mint keeps deer away. Basically, mint doesn’t have any harsh component to it. Like caladium plants, mint is not harmful to deer. But the smell that comes from mint leaves is bad.

They cannot tolerate the smell. Though mint leaves don’t release any smell by themselves. When the deer will bite on the leaves, then the smell will go out of the leaves. It will spread throughout the mouth of the deer and to its nose.

Which eventually stops the deer to eat anything else, as the smell is too strong for them to continue eating any other things. If a deer somehow eats the mint leaves, it will never bother to eat the mint again.

Because they will have a hard time eating and swallowing anything else. Not only mint but all the aromatic plants and flowers keep deer away.

How to use mint to keep deer away?

To deter deer with mint, you need to maintain a proper set of rules. Let’s find about them.

Essential Oil:

Using essential oils of different spices, flowers, and other natural goods can keep deer away. Deer avoids daffodils, lavender, mint, red chili flakes, etc.

Using the concentrated form of peppermint essential oil will keep deer away. Because mint essential oil is much stronger than regular mint leaves. This flavor is more powerful to the deer, as they have a sensitive smelling sense.

Plant Mints:

Planting mint is one of the easiest things to do. You can plant mint plants everywhere, which is you can plant mint in shady areas and under direct sunlight as well.

If you plant mints, you can use them to deter deer or rabbits too. Because these animals don’t love the strong smells. Also, these are the animals that invade gardens and ruin them.

Spread the mint plants:

You can spread mint plants to every corner of the garden. It will work as a guard in your garden. You should plant them and ensure that the plants are grown enough.

After these plants are grown, these plants will start their magic. When these plants are grown, they spread by themselves. And these plants are a little bit bushy. That gives these plants the guarding capabilities.

Homemade deer deterrent:

You can make a deer deterrent by using mint essential oils. Use two or three drops of mint essential oil and mix them with rubbing alcohol or water.

Then keep them inside a sprayer. Spray the mixture of water or alcohol with essential oils and spread it throughout the garden.

Final Thoughts

Deer stay away from aromatic plants or foods. As mint leaves have a distinct flavor to them, deer cannot eat them. Using mint leaves or mint plants all over the yard or garden can keep deer away. Mint essential oils also keep deer away. Mint can help you to get rid of other animals such as rabbits.

Sharing is caring!