Deer Breeders Gazette Features ACA's Mission

February 6, 2013

Deer Breeders Gazette

February 2013

The American Cervid Alliance

For many years the deer industry has seen an steady growth as more and more
people, for one reason or another, choose this alternative livestock
industry in lieu of traditional agriculture.  We have seen the peaks and
valleys in the elk and whitetail markets just like traditional livestock
markets but there is one major difference; marginal land, unsuitable for
traditional livestock, can be utilized for cervid farming.

Whitetail, elk, red deer ,and sika producers have always been very private
and kept their industry relatively out of the public forefront.  While most
thought this was the way to stay under the wildlife agency's radar what it
did was create a mystique surrounding this industry.  It left this newly
emerging industry vulnerable to criticism.  Because there was no proactive
approach or promotion of the captive industry and the fact that those of us
involved in this industry have been mostly reactive, we have become a target
of ridicule and over-regulation.

Because of this ideology within the industry and the fact that more and more
whitetail, elk and red deer producers are facing elimination by regulation
from agriculture and wildlife agencies using Chronic Wasting Disease, a
disease that has less than a two percent prevalence rate, as industry's
Achilles heel, there has been an overwhelming demand to unite our industry.
Representatives from the North American Elk Breeders and the Exotic Wildlife
Association began an open dialogue with leaders of state and national
associations to find a solution for the challenges that we are facing today
and will be facing tomorrow.  

The cervid industry can no longer afford to be reactive and we must become
proactive to truly insure the future of our livelihoods in general and
industry in particular.  To accomplish this, meetings involving 32 different
state and national associations have taken place in an effort to unify this
industry.  This group has now become the American Cervid Alliance.  

This alliance is a leadership council where every association, no matter how
large or small, will have an equal voice to help solve the major problems
facing the cervid and captive industries. This collective group can have a
major impact when it comes to the burdensome and discriminatory rules that
are being placed on cervid producers.

The American Cervid Alliance will be active at the federal level attempting
to work with regulators to develop interstate rules that will minimize
disease risk while promoting interstate commerce.  In individual states the
alliance will be proactive furnishing resources and defenses that single
state associations are unable to do alone.  There will be strength in
numbers through the ACA.

Make sure your state association is part of the alliance.  It does you no
good to belong to an association that does not support an alliance of
associations.  The alliance will strive to build resources through donations
from associations and individuals.  these donations will be sold at public
auctions in the coming months. The monies raised from these donations will
be used to hire attorneys and epidemiologists to assist at both the state
and federal level if necessary.

As most breeders know, the fires of over-regulation and the discriminatory
rules are out of control.  If you cannot legislate an industry out of
business then you regulate it out of business. All of us have invested too
much time and money developing our businesses; we have to stand together to
to insure its future.

Please contact the American Cervid Alliance today at or by phone at 402-756-3355 or my cell number
830-928-3158 for more information on how you or your association can be a
part of the ACA.

Charly Seale
Executive Director
Exotic Wildlife Association


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