Management practices used by white-tailed deer farms in Pennsylvania and herd health problems

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7 Scopus citations


Objective -To determine current management practices used by white-tailed deer farms In Pennsylvania and identify animal health problems that exist in these herds. Design - Cross-sectional study. Study Population - Owners and managers of 233 farms in Pennsylvania that raised white-tailed deer. Procedures - A self-administered questionnaire was mailed to participants. Results - Herds ranged in size from 1 to 350 deer. Land holdings ranged from 0.07 to 607 hectares (0.17 to 1,500 acres). Stocking density ranged from 0.1 to 118.6 deer/hectare (0.04 to 48 deer/acre). Most (84%) respondents raised deer for breeding or hunting stock; 13% raised deer exclusively as pets or for hobby purposes, and purpose varied by herd size. Multiple associations were identified between management or disease factors and herd size, the use of vaccines, use of veterinary and diagnostic services, use of pasture, and use of artificial insemination increased as herd size increased. The most common conditions in herds of all sizes were respiratory tract disease, diarrhea, parasitism, and sudden death. The prevalence of respiratory tract disease increased as herd size increased. Conclusions and Clinical Relevance - Results suggested that many aspects of herd management for white-tailed deer farms in Pennsylvania were associated with herd size, but that regardless of herd size, many preventive medicine practices were improperly used or underused in many herds.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)98-104
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of the American Veterinary Medical Association
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2008

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • veterinary(all)


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