Using a deer protein feeder gives you a real and dramatic advantage on your hunt. Once the deer pick up on the scent of the protein, they’re going to want to approach, and you can be there waiting, poised to make the kill.
Many hunters out there try to rig their own deer protein feeder, but our advice to use is not to bother.
Why? Because there are some really good deer protein feeders already out there to buy, and from some really good brands too.
We’ve been looking into it, and have discovered 5 of the best protein deer feeders around, and we’ve done reviews on each of them.
We also have a buying guide for you and have some answers for your most frequently asked questions.
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Best Deer Protein Feeders - Comparison Table
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Best Deer Protein Feeders - Reviews
If you’re hiking to your honey spot, and you’re specifically looking for a lightweight, easy to carry deer feeder, then this ought to be the one you go for. All you have to do is discover a tree branch at the perfect height.
Hanging feeders generally tend to be cheaper than the larger tripod feeders you can get, and this is no exception.
It can hold 6.5 gallons all together, so considerably a lot less than a typical tripod feeder, and is better suited for attracting a solitary deer rather than a whole herd of game. The smaller capacity also means that you’ll need to refill it more often than a tripod feeder.
It’s an automatic feeder that you can program to release the feed up to six times in one day. You can also adjust the duration of the feed dispensing to between 1 and 20 seconds at any one time.
What we really like about it is that it casts the feed in a narrow 30 degree path, so you can release the feed as you’re walking along a path or trail, or if you choose, to lead the deer to a particular spot.
This is a reliable feeder, as you may expect from a brand like Moultire, and this reliability is down in part to its anti-clog technology, and spinner plate with agitator, which means you can use any type of feed in it including deer protein. Be sure to check out our list of the best deer attractant scent for more great items like this.
This tripod game feeder is one of Amazon’s best sellers, and is a huge hit with customers.
It has a large capacity, coming in at 30 gallons, and the feed is released from a programmable digital timer that will allow feeding up to 6 times a day. You can also adjust the duration of the feed for up to 20 seconds at a time.
Being organised about the timing of the feeds, means you can make less trips. But when you do make a trip, remember to check the feeder’s battery level indicator to see if the batteries need changing.
It takes a 6 volt battery, but you can also power it via it’s external power port, which also accepts solar panel powering.
The height of the feeder is also adjustable, so you can tweak it according to the height of deer you want to catch, and keep it way out of reach from any varmints that might be sneaking around.
You can have it at 5.5 feet to fill it, and then heighten it to 7 or 8 feet afterwards. This increase in height can be a great deterrent for the varmints. There’s also a built-in varmint guard.
This feeder also has a wind-resistant metal spinner plate, and a metal funnel too, so you get a reliable feed release time and again.
We also like this feeder’s quick lock attachment system, you just push together and twist for a secure lock, no tools required. Find more great products like this by checking out our guide to the best calls for deer
If you’re looking for a hanging deer feeder that can provide the same capacity as a tripod feeder can, then this is definitely the one to go for! It holds 30 gallons in its metal barrel all together.
And you get all the fancy features Moultrie can offer. Like the digital timer which you can program to release the feed up to 6 times in one day, and for an adjustable duration between 1 seconds and 20 seconds.
Other features include a feed-level estimator and battery level indicator - really handy.
It comes with a metal hanging bar ready for you to hang from a tree.
We love how it also features a built in varmint guard, to keep those pesky varmints from interfering where they’re not wanted. To be honest though most varmints would struggle to get to a hanging feeder anyway.
It’s easy to mount this feeder to a hopper, thanks to its Quick-lock adapter which doesn’t need any tools to use.
The spin plate is metal which is a key feature when it comes to a feeder’s reliability. We have also reviewed the best deer feeders, so check them out as well.
Boss Buck is a premium brand in game feeders.
This is one of the most versatile feeders around, and one of the things we love about this feeder is how you can convert it from a gravity feeder to an auto feeder.
This enables you to gravity feed protein in the spring and summer before converting it to an automatic feeding system through the fall and winter.
There are 3 feed ports all together, each with a drain hole to disperse any rainwater that enters the tip, and through which the feed is evenly distributed, which is thanks to it’s internal cone sleeve and overflow dam.
So it’s moisture resistant and non clogging. And, you can use just about any feed shape and size.
You can adjust the flow to get it perfect, or virtually shut it off all together, should you wish.
This beauty offers the best in feeder design, the double walled hatch lid allows the hopper system to breathe, which eliminates any condensation, all the while achieving ambient Temperature much faster than other models.
Here’s another durable, weather resistant 30 gallon tripod feeder that’s super popular with Amazon customers.
We love how easy it is to set up - it only takes 15 minutes tops, so it’s great for an entry level hunter. It has a manageable weight of about 37 pounds.
It also has an easy to use digital power control unit, which allows up to 4 daily feed times, at durations you can set at 5, 10, 15, or 20 seconds. You’ll easily be able to attract and pattern the game.
You have the option of filling with corn or protein, depending on what your game prefers.
In addition to the galvanised spinner plate, you also get a built-in funnel for accurate feed dispersal.
Best Deer Protein Feeders - Buyer's Guide
Getting a well functioning deer protein feeder is key to attracting game, since a faulty one will cause problems, leaving you frustrated. There’s a lot to think about when buying one, but we’ll walk you through it.
There are a variety of different types of deer protein feeder you can get, including spin-cast, tripod, hanging, gravity and automatic. But if you're new to this, there’s no need to be overwhelmed, we’ll walk you through it.
How heavy or light the feeder is
How heavy duty a deer feeder you can use depends on how you intend to get to your chosen location. If you can drive right up, then a heavy duty is no problem, but if you’re hiking to get there you’ll want something light and easy to carry.
Refilling the feeder
It’s important to be able to easily refill the feeder throughout the season. A hanging feeder or a feeder that’s too tall might need a step or small ladder to reach, and again that would mean more gear to carry with you.
Not to worry, though, many feeders are designed to allow you to stand on the ground to load it up.
When it comes to refilling the feeder, if you want to attract a lot of game, you may also benefit from having a large hopper, since it can hold a lot more. And this will allow you to get away with refilling it less often.
Since it’s being left outdoors, your deer protein feeder needs to be able to stand up against the elements. It needs to stay in place regardless of rain, wind, or even snow.
Similarly, it has to be able to withstand getting rubbed or knocked by the game as they attempt to get as much food as they can from the feeder. This means if you were using a tripod style feeder you need to make sure it’s 100% stable and will stay in place for you.
The durability factor also applies to any of the mechanical parts of the feeder, such as feeder motors, to shoot the feed out, or a timer to allow timed release of the feed. The more moving parts there are, the greater chance the chance that those parts might break.
Those parts are super handy though, so rather than do without them, go ahead and get them, but ensure you buy from a good brand to ensure durability. All of the deer protein feeders in our Top 5 are from good, well known brands that you can trust.
On that note, the deer feeder has to be protected from varmint too, since they will also be attracted to the protein. Some varmints, like racoons, often tend to try to climb around the feeder, or chew through the hopper, or spill loads of the deer protein onto the ground.
This is one reason why automatic feed dispensers are popular with hunters. Or you can get feeders with attachments that go around the legs to prevent varmint from climbing up, or even feeders that will give the varmint an electric shock on touching it.
How easy a deer feeder is to set up can be an easy thing to overlook. However you must bear in mind, if you intend to set it up alone, just how feasible that is. A heavy, high up feeder could be frustrating to set up alone, that’s why you won’t find any of this type in our Top 5.
Easy set up also includes things like being able to work the feeder’s timer.
Hunting is an expensive sport, with all the gear used, so it can sometimes be tempting to concentrate on looking at the cheaper end of the spectrum. However if you buy too cheap a feeder, you may get stuck carrying out repairs, or replacing it all together further down the road. Concentrate instead on how well the feeder suits your needs.
Answers to your most frequently asked questions
Is the use of deer feeders for hunting legal in my state?
The US is quite divided on the use of deer bait for hunting. Of the 50 different states, 22 of them have legalized the use of deer baits either in selected parts or in the entire state. The remaining 28 states, on the other hand, do not allow deer baiting for hunting at all.
We strongly recommend that you check the laws for your particular state before you go and buy a deer feeder. You can find a run down of this on the following link: https://outdoorever.com/deer-baiting-laws/
How do you go about feeding protein to deer?
To start getting deer to eat your protein feed, you may need to mix the protein with corn to make it more attractive to the deer. This won’t be a problem with any of our Top 5 deer protein feeders.
Where should you place your deer feeder?
As with all forms of hunting, it’s all about thinking one step ahead. Come up with some ideas about location, and sneak around to see if any deer frequent the area. Remember deer prefer to come out in low light. Also deer like their cover, so wooded areas are generally best. Avoid large open fields.
What is the best deer protein feed?
Our recommendation for deer protein feed is BioLogic Spring Protein Pea Food Plot Seed.
How high should a deer feeder be?
The best height at which to position your deer feeder, is so that the bottom of the feeders is 38 to 40 inches off the ground.