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Deer Ranching for Products and Paid Hunting: Threat to Conservation and Biodiversity by Luxury Markets

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Abstract

Farming deer for antlers, venison, salable parts, or for paid hunting poses unsurmountable hazards to conservation of native American deer. Despite warnings, these activities continue with support from agriculture. Some realized consequences of this commercialization are as follows: (1) transmission of foreign disease to susceptible deer species, their commensals, and predators; (2) inadvertant and deliberate genetic pollution of native deer; (3) competition from feral populations of nonnative deer; (4) uncontrollable, illegal killings, and capture of deer supplying meat, parts, and trophy markets, and living animals to game ranches; (5) corruption of conservation legislation by eliminating proven conservation policies; (6) loss of power by law enforcement and regulatory agencies due to attacks by powerful interest groups; (7) loss of public accountability and control over conservation by making native wildlife de facto private property; (8) loss of support for wildlife management through disenfranchising the public and de facto allocating benefits from public wildlife along racial, social, and income lines; (9) loss of jobs, income, and influence for the wildlife profession as an elite of wealthy landowners take control. For the sake of a $5 US billion world market in dead wildlife, a North American market worth $60 US billion annually, but centered on living wildlife, is put at risk, as is North America’s successful system of wildlife conservation.

Key words

  • Wildlife policy
  • deer ranching/farming
  • paid hunting

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Geist, V. (1992). Deer Ranching for Products and Paid Hunting: Threat to Conservation and Biodiversity by Luxury Markets. In: Brown, R.D. (eds) The Biology of Deer. Springer, New York, NY. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4612-2782-3_130

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4612-2782-3_130

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