Recently Introduced Bills in Texas are Bad for Wild Deer

April 11, 2017 | by National Deer Alliance

The National Deer Alliance (NDA) recently joined several other conservation organizations in opposing two bills posted for the April 11th hearing of the Texas House Committee on Culture, Recreation, and Tourism. Both bills are bad for wild deer in Texas as they seek to relax important restrictions on captive-bred deer operations.

The following is a summary of the bills as written by the Texas Wildlife Association:

HB 2855 introduces implanted microchips as a new form of identification for captive-bred deer. The lack of visible identification such as ear tags creates real biosecurity risks and blurs ethical lines in the hunting community. Robust identification is critical to wildlife disease management, as captive deer breeders are allowed to transport and release these animals to be co-mingled with pasture-born deer all over the state. Challenges to inventory inspections create unnecessary risk to the health of all white-tailed deer in Texas.

HB 3723 allows for captive deer breeders to process and commercially sell venison from their penned operations. This bill encourages factory farming of an iconic game species for private profit. The fish and wildlife of Texas belong to all Texans. A narrow subsidy program of no conservation value funded with Public Trust resources is unacceptable. Commercial meat harvest of game species is the very antithesis of wildlife conservation in North America.

Both bills are posted in the NDA Grassroots Advocacy Center where Texas residents can contact their legislators to make their voice heard on these important bills.