The farming of deer as an alternative to traditional livestock enterprises is now firmly established and is expanding within several countries of the European Economic Community. However, the successful farming of deer requires the adoption of appropriate management schemes to accommodate the biological requirements of these animals. Much experience has now been gained and it is essential that this information becomes readily available througout the Community. In addition, as the volume of deer farming has increased a number of health problems have become recognised which present features distinct from other domestic ruminants. Although knowledge is still incomplete it would appear that deer may react to certain pathogens in a very different way to other domestic ruminants, presenting new problems of diagnosis and control. The rapid detection of these conditions and development of appropriate control strategies will be essential for the establishment of an economically viable deer farming industry in the Community. Much of the information on the management of farmed deer and their diseases is anecdotal and fragmented and the purpose of this meeting was to accelerate the dissemination of this knowledge between scientists in the Community committed to the development of this area of agricultural industry. The meeting, financed by the Commission of the European Communities from its budget for the Coordination of Agricultural Research in the Community was held in Scotland, on the 10th to 11th December, 1987.
The first International Conference on the Biology of Deer Production was held at Dunedin, New Zealand in 1983. That meeting provided, for the first time, a forum for those with interests in either wild deer management or farmed deer production to come together. Scientists, wild deer managers, domestic deer farmers, veterinarians, venison and antler product producers, and others were able to discuss common problems and to share their knowledge and experience. The relationships formed at that meeting, and the information amassed in the resulting Proceedings, sparked new endeavors in cervid research, management, and production. A great deal has taken place in the world of deer biology since 1983. Wild deer populations, although ever increasing in many areas of the world, face new hazards of habitat loss, environmental contamination, and overexploitation. Some species are closer to extinction than ever. Game managers often face political as well as biological challenges. Many more deer are now on farms, leading to greater concerns about disease control and increased needs for husbandry information. Researchers have accumulated considerable new in formation, some of it in areas such as biochemical genetics, not discussed in 1983.
Generally Accepted Agricultural and Management Practices for the Care of Farm Animals
New Scientist magazine was launched in 1956 "for all those men and women who are interested in scientific discovery, and in its industrial, commercial and social consequences". The brand's mission is no different today - for its consumers, New Scientist reports, explores and interprets the results of human endeavour set in the context of society and culture.