Today's upward trend in deer (and elk) breeding and shooting operations is reaching critical mass, compromising traditional hunting and conservation, and fueling a strong new response from America's first conservation and hunter advocacy organization, the Boone and Crockett Club.
The Club today published a new position statement outlining its concerns.
"We encourage every hunter to read this position in its entirety," said Morrie Stevens Sr., president of the Club. "The core topic - privatizing a public resource for individual profits - has the power to change the foundations of hunting and its historic ties to conservation. And crossing the line from wildlife to agricultural commodity represents a fundamental shift in American culture. We think the ramifications are worth considering carefully."
The position statement also addresses:
- Selective breeding, artificial insemination, regimented feeding and pharmaceutical drugs to achieve unnaturally large antlers in deer and elk.
- Commercial values based on artificial trophy size.
- Ethics of altering native wildlife and then shooting these animals in escape-proof, fenced enclosures.
- Breeding operations' potential for transmitting diseases to wild herds.
- Risk of weakened public support for hunting. In a democracy, hunting exists only at the pleasure of voters. Hunting's public image matters more than ever.
About the Boone and Crockett Club
The Boone and Crockett Club was founded by Theodore Roosevelt in 1887 as North America's first hunting and conservation organization. Its mission is to promote the conservation and management of wildlife, especially big game, and its habitat, to preserve and encourage hunting, and to maintain the highest ethical standards of fair chase and sportsmanship in North America. Join us at www.boone-crockett.org.