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Monitoring the health and welfare of free-living deer in deer parks
  1. Peter Green


Deer in enclosed parks are free-living, which means they cannot be handled, tested, vaccinated or effectively medicated. They are kept at densities that far exceed natural deer population densities in the wild and most enclosed herds cannot survive the winter without supplementary food. The welfare of deer in parks is increasingly a matter of public interest and veterinary surgeons may be consulted about the health and welfare of such animals. This article offers guidance on how to assess the welfare of deer in parks, based on visual assessment of the animals when they are alive and carcase examination after culling.

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