Multiple Resolutions to be Proposed by Cervid Industry
Leaders of the deer and elk ranching industry are converging in southern California for a busy week at the United States Animal Health Association annual conference. The United States Animal Health Association(USAHA) is a large non-profit organization that connects federal and state officials with industry representatives as well as leading researchers of the animal health community.
The USAHA conference offers several days of committee meetings that focus on more than a dozen specific diseases and animal industries. The cervid industry is active in many of these committees and uses them as a forum to discuss and encourage positive regulatory change.
For the first time, the farmed cervid industry will have its own committee separate of the Wildlife and Captive Wildlife Committees to review a litany of animal health issues. Indiana State Veterinarian, Brett Marsh is the chair of the committee with Exotic Wildlife Association Executive Director, Charly Seale serving as the vice-chair. The creation of this committee was first proposed by the American Cervid Alliance at the USAHA conference in 2013.
“I believe that we have an outstanding agenda for our Farmed Cervidae Committee,” Charly Seale told the committee in a recent email. “We have tried to develop an agenda with very diverse topics that are extremely important to the cervidae industry.”
Nearly a dozen members of the cervid industry, representing several different national and state deer and elk associations, will be in attendance and prepared for work. Earlier this year at the National Cervid Congress meeting in Texas, the American Cervid Alliance Leadership Council reviewed the objectives for the conference. Several resolutions will be proposed by the cervid industry including extending cervid TB herd certification testing intervals from 3 to 5 years, eliminating interstate brucellosis testing requirements for cervids, increase data reporting for EHD by USDA, among others. The brucellosis resolution has already been approved by the western region of USAHA, giving the issue momentum heading into the conference.
The industry is awaiting the release of USDA APHIS’ Chronic Wasting Disease Program Standards Document, which was supposed to be completed earlier this year. The industry is also waiting for the USDA APHIS’ guidance document for wild elk movements by state agencies to be amended per the approved 2016 resolution in North Carolina.