Target: Erica Hawking, Ohio Department of Agriculture
Goal: Stop all captive deer hunting operations in Ohio.
Captive deer hunting has become very popular in the last few years. In Ohio alone there are currently more than 500 captive deer hunting facilities. These operations allow hunters to kill bucks and doe with little effort and are often very lucrative for the owner. Captive deer farms also play a role in spreading a chronic wasting disease between herds, an issue that must be halted before it becomes too serious.
Chronic wasting disease is similar to mad cow disease in that it causes lesions in the brain of the deer. While the disease is not rampant, the growth of the captive hunting industry is of great concern because the disease may spread with it. Hunters will come to Ohio to hunt deer in the state’s captive farms and then travel with their kill across state lines. Many states prohibit interstate travel of game deer, though Ohio does not. The first case of chronic wasting disease in Ohio was found in 2014 on a popular deer hunting farm. Appropriately, many people believe that this singular incident should serve as a warning and the farms should be put to an end.
The Ohio Department of Agriculture can put an end to captive deer farms in the state. Sign this petition to urge the department’s communication director to help implement a ban on the farms to stop chronic wasting disease from spreading and end this inhumane hunting practice.
Dear Ms. Hawking,
Not too long ago chronic wasting disease was found in Ohio, on the World Class Whitetails hunting reserve. Some people believe that shutting down all captive hunting reserves in Ohio is an extreme solution, since the disease is not yet rampant. However, I believe that all captive hunting reserves in Ohio should be terminated, or at least monitored very closely.
I understand that the captive hunting industry is becoming very lucrative for farm owners. This is not reason enough to keep them. Allowing these operations to continue also allows chronic wasting disease to spread and become a serious epidemic. No amount of money is worth putting wild and domestic deer at risk of developing such a painful and debilitating disease.
At the very least I urge that interstate travel of deer carcasses be banned in Ohio. This would keep an outbreak within state lines, though there would still be over 500 farms at risk of exposure.
The most comprehensive plan of action is to end captive deer farms. Please do all you can to help the deer of Ohio stay healthy.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Pere David Deer via Wikipedia