Fallow Deer & Axis Deer to be Exempted from CWD Program & Requiremen
January 13, 2014
Several Deer Species Considered “Non-Susceptible” to CWD by USDA
TOPEKA- The Kansas Department of Agriculture has agreed to exempt certain deer species from the CWD program including requirements for interstate travel and impacts on other cervid herd status. The exemption was made by the Kansas Department of Agriculture after the Kansas Cervid Breeders Association approached the department about several cervid species that are considered to be non-susceptible to Chronic Wasting Disease. The change will become official once the new cervid regulations are finalized in early 2014.
The Federal CWD Rule only applies to three subspecies of the cervid family. The three subfamilies, known as genera, apply to Odocioleus, which includes whitetail deer, blacktail deer, and mule deer; Cervus, which includes elk, sika deer, and red deer; and Alces, which includes moose. Other subspecies such as fallow deer, axis deer, and pere david’s deer, are each part of their own sub-species, and not considered susceptible to CWD by the United States Department of Agriculture.
Dr Bill Brown, Animal Health Commissioner of the Kansas Department of Agriculture, recommended amending Kansas’ regulation to match the federal policy.
This exemption means breeders that raise these certain non-susceptible CWD species, such as fallow deer, are not required to obtain the standard five year CWD monitoring status in order to be imported or exported across state lines, of which whitetail deer and elk breeders are subject. In addition, a cervid farmer in Kansas can have an elk or whitetail herd that is CWD monitored and also raise a herd of fallow deer, which are not CWD monitored or tested, and it will not affect the elk or whitetail herd’s CWD status in any way. Fallow deer breeders will also not be subject to bare any CWD testing costs, as there is no monitoring program.
“I think this is a great thing,” said KCBA President Ken Anderson. “Kansas is unique in the fact that many of our breeders raise two to three different cervid species. This exemption can allow our members to further diversify by raising deer without worry of CWD regulations.”
Many KCBA members already raise non-susceptible cervid species, most commonly fallow deer. KCBA director and long time fallow deer breeder Brad Farmer said this could encourage more fallow deer farming in Kansas. Farmer said, “Fallow deer farming offers several advantages compared to whitetail deer and elk. Fallow deer are not subject to these CWD fears and regulations and are also not generally affected by EHD. Fallow deer also have several markets that can be utilized to sustain their value.”
The KCBA appreciates the cooperation and leadership of the Kansas Department of Agriculture working with cervid farmers across the state that raises non-susceptible CWD cervids.
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