If you have a deer breeding herd with a C2 or higher classification status, you can apply to be part of the closed deer herd programme, funded by Deer Industry New Zealand.

How it works

Herds that are part of the programme only need to be tested for TB every second or third year, instead of every year. Your herd is eligible if:

  • 70% of your annual weaner crop is killed as yearlings
  • 10% of adult deer (over 2 years old) are killed annually
  • the herd has returned a clear whole-herd TB test in the last year, and
  • all stock are tagged and registered in NAIT.

In herds with 100 or more deer, all eligible animals are TB tested every 3 years.

In herds with less than 100 deer, all eligible animals are TB tested every 2 years.

The age of the deer tested varies depending on where the herd is located — if your herd is in an MCA they'll be tested from 8 months of age, otherwise it will be 15 or 24 months, depending on the TB risk in your area.

If you're accepted into the programme

If your herd is accepted into the programme you can’t introduce any new deer to the herd unless they’re sire stags you've bought or are grazing. Sire stags must:

  • come from a C5 or higher herd
  • not be brought in from an annual testing area.

You can’t move deer out of the herd except to slaughter, unless:

  • the herd status is C5 or higher
  • your whole herd has had a clear test in the year before you move them, and
  • the deer you're moving have a clear pre-movement TB test within 60 days of them moving off your property.

Annual declarations

While you're part of the programme, in the years between testing, you need to provide us with information on:

  • herd size — by providing an annual stock reconciliation
  • stock killed during the previous 12 months, with a copy of the kill sheets
  • stock introduced to your herd during the previous 12 months, and the Animal Status Declaration (ASD) forms.

If your herd has a C5 or higher classification you also need to provide:

  • copies of ASDs for any live animal sales or movements, and
  • the associated TB test receipts showing pre-movement tests were completed for these animals.

We use this information to confirm you're still meeting the requirements of the programme.

How to apply

There are 3 steps in the application process.

  1. Download a copy of the eligibility form and complete all of the sections in it. Make sure you provide accurate numbers in your application — don’t use percentages.
  2. Download a copy of the terms and conditions and complete the written declaration showing you agree to the terms.
  3. Send both forms to us at info@ospri.co.nz.