Deer Anatomy – Vomolfaction


Deer possess a sixth sense called vomolfaction. It is tough to explain what this sixth sense does, since humans have only five senses by which we describe our surroundings; early deer researchers were not even aware of this sixth sense.

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Vomolfaction is mostly used during the rut. It involves sucking the fresh urine from a doe. It has been shown that this urine contains chemicals which are not released into the air, but can be detected by the buck’s vomolfaction gland, the vomeronasal gland. These chemicals provide added information about the doe which smell alone cannot provide.

The vemeronasal gland is located in the roof of the buck’s mouth. The vomeronasal gland acts as a vacuum, literally sucking the urine from the doe. Once the buck has sampled the urine, it is discarded through the mouth.


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