Is a rogue Amazon Echo or a feisty deer the source of the mystery grunting in Ipswich?

Could a muntjac deer be keeping Ipswich families up at night? Picture: SUSAN OLDFIELD

Could a muntjac deer be keeping Ipswich families up at night? Picture: SUSAN OLDFIELD - Credit: Susan Oldfield

It has disturbed sleep, left neighbours quetioning one another and led to some unusual suggestions but the mystery surrounding the Ipswich ‘grunts’ could finally have been solved.

Yesterday we asked readersif they knew what the disturbing snore-like sounds heard around the Stoke park area of Ispwich were.

And the response has been overwhelming, with multiple theories from woodland animals like foxes, badgers and even baby barn owls to noisy couple’s and even a rogue virtual assistant.

It was initially thought the noise was coming from mating hedgehogs, and posting on Facebook Stacey Osborn backed up this theory.

“I would say its probably hedgehogs. I heard that sound in my garden the other night and when I went out in the garden to look I saw one run into the bush.”

But many others think muntjac deer, often spotted in this area of the town, are responsible.

Linda Hoang said: “I saw a muntjac deer standing on a driveway on Almondhayes one morning, would it be that?”

Another reader who wished to remain anonymous also suspected the deer, but warned residents to leave them undisturbed at this time of year while they are rearing their young.

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They said: “The sound they make is less of a grunt and more a low bark. It is not unusual to see the muntjac and fallow deer along the Belstead Brook from Bourne Park to Belstead Hills.

“They are very shy and go to ground if they scent or hear any disturbance, so most people will be totally unaware of them living on their doorstep.

“There is a considerable population on the outskirts of Belstead and Wherstead so a few will filter their way through the estates.”

In the coming weeks deer will enter their mating season which leads to an increase in barking.

The debate, which has rumbled on for more than a decade, was re ignited by John Bush, of Wigmore Close, this week.

He said: “I’ve only heard it the once, but when I looked it up online I saw someone else had heard it and had to know if anyone had figured out what it was.”

Families in Kesgrave were also disturbed by a similar late-night noise back in 2007, which they described as a “huffing and puffing”.

When she was complaining about the noises 11 years ago, Helen White, of Kesgrave, said: “First of all I thought it sounded like a moose, now I think it sounds more like a pig.”

She said that her son sometimes walked through the wood on his way back from school and believed the source of the noise could have been a homeless person who had taken up residence there at the time.

While it is rare to spot a moose in Kesgrave, deer are a more common sight and this could have been the culprit although the mystery was never solved.

Do you know what is keeping residents up in Kesgrave? Do you have a photo of the source of the midnight sounds? Contact us on Facebook and Twitter, or email us.