This paper will start with briefly outlining the recent domestication history of red deer (Cervus elaphus) and fallow deer (Dama dama), followed by a description of the present status of modern deer farming. It will then review the main welfare issues of deer farming. The following aspects will be considered: accommodation and housing, management and handling, nutrition (feed and water provision), transport and slaughter, plus a short mention to velvet harvest. As a summary, the following practices can be recommended to ensure animal welfare in modern deer farming: the adoption of suitable housing systems and of adequate management techniques (e.g. specific handling pens and drop-floor cradles or crushes) and the respect of specific needs (e.g. provision of protection and shelter from predators as well as from climatic extremes, such as cold winds or direct solar radiation). Handling and yarding operations will be easier when they occur in dim light. Special attention must be paid to the manipulation of the newborns. At the slaughterhouse, facilities must be designed specifically for deer. The presence of well trained stockpersons, with a sound knowledge of deer physiology and behaviour, is also a key-factor for improving welfare levels in deer farms. To achieve these aims, training of the managers and stockpersons and the adoption of specific codes of conducts are highly recommendable.

Welfare issues of modern deer farming / S. Mattiello. - In: ITALIAN JOURNAL OF ANIMAL SCIENCE. - ISSN 1594-4077. - 8:Suppl. 1(2009), pp. 205-217.

Welfare issues of modern deer farming

S. Mattiello
Primo
2009

Abstract

This paper will start with briefly outlining the recent domestication history of red deer (Cervus elaphus) and fallow deer (Dama dama), followed by a description of the present status of modern deer farming. It will then review the main welfare issues of deer farming. The following aspects will be considered: accommodation and housing, management and handling, nutrition (feed and water provision), transport and slaughter, plus a short mention to velvet harvest. As a summary, the following practices can be recommended to ensure animal welfare in modern deer farming: the adoption of suitable housing systems and of adequate management techniques (e.g. specific handling pens and drop-floor cradles or crushes) and the respect of specific needs (e.g. provision of protection and shelter from predators as well as from climatic extremes, such as cold winds or direct solar radiation). Handling and yarding operations will be easier when they occur in dim light. Special attention must be paid to the manipulation of the newborns. At the slaughterhouse, facilities must be designed specifically for deer. The presence of well trained stockpersons, with a sound knowledge of deer physiology and behaviour, is also a key-factor for improving welfare levels in deer farms. To achieve these aims, training of the managers and stockpersons and the adoption of specific codes of conducts are highly recommendable.
Behaviour; Deer farming; Fallow deer; Red deer; Welfare
Settore AGR/19 - Zootecnica Speciale
2009
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/2434/72753
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