Farming, harvesting options available for local deer

Availability of venison is a real opportunity for restaurateurs

Recently two people resigned from the Capital Regional District citizens advisory group that is trying to formulate a deer management plan.

Their complaint seems to be, among other things, that nobody can give them an accurate deer population number.

Unfortunately, the deer don’t participate in the census and as a taxpayer, I don’t really want to pay someone to go out and count them.

The fact is, they’ve become so numerous to be problematic. Not only do they devour gardens and farms, they’ve become accustomed to people and a danger to people and pets.

And without any natural predators, their numbers are growing yearly. You don’t need an expensive study to know that.

Why not farm them just as we do cattle? What a natural food resource. Deer and other cloven-hooved mammals are farmed all over the world.

Licensed farmers could safely and harmlessly capture the deer and transport them to their farms where they could live in their natural environment, breed, and provide a sustainable source of food.

Allocate a portion of the meat to soup kitchens throughout the region and then sell the rest on the open market. What an opportunity, in a world where the demand for food is increasing and supplies are declining.

Venison, in its different forms, is a very nutritional source of low-fat protein. It costs less than beef.

Businesses and jobs would be created, which in turn, would generate more tax dollars. Local restaurants could offer fresh venison on their menus.

I know it can be done. I met a gentleman in Tumbler Ridge, B.C. and that’s what he did. I think he called it fallow deer.

Do you think if we could get a doe to co-operate, we could get milk?

Bob Broughton

Victoria