Vice-President's Message and Newsletter August 2019

All y’all,

I write to inform those of you whom I have email addresses for and ask that you pass on to others and check Facebook for further information.  As many of you know, Greg Mills has resigned as president of the ILDFA and I have been attempting to fulfill the vice president’s duties and fill in until we can elect a new president (hopefully darn soon).  Greg has been a great leader and president, but current obligations have left him with little or no spare time to devote to ILDFA.  He should be thanked for his service whenever you see him.  He is cutting back but will still be raising a few (good) deer!

First and foremost, I wish to inform you of our financial status.  It is not good.  We desperately need funds/donations as soon as possible to get us through the year until our annual meeting and fundraiser.  Please send whatever you can spare to Chet Hostetler (address below so no excuses!) our treasurer. You can print an updated membership form on our website.  You can pay your annual dues at the same time!  Unfortunately, our industry depends entirely on donations to stay in business.  Most other agricultural endeavors have “check off” systems that deduct a portion of sales to support their industries business, lobbying and research efforts.  We should also be supporting our national organization, NADeFA as their national lobbying efforts, research and educational efforts keep us in business.  They pay their (our) national lobbyist over $90,000 dollars a year.  Not much per deer or deer farm!  You must always remember that there are people out there who do not agree with your right (yes, RIGHT) to own deer.  One stroke of the pen in Springfield or Washington DC can stop deer farming.  Ask anyone from Montana!  Now is the time to dig deep when you have hopefully sold some bucks or are getting ready to.  Buy a lifetime membership if you can… most of you intend to raise deer for a long time!  Our lobbyist helped avert the introduction of a bill in Springfield this spring that would have affected us.  Illinois Department of Agriculture and Illinois Department of Natural Resources continue to either help us (IDOA) or leave us alone (IDNR).  Let’s keep it that way!

Just a word or two on current EHD happenings. We are currently experiencing an outbreak of EHD statewide that is devastating some farms. I am attaching an article on EHD for you to read and hope it helps.  Also, the contacts for the new Medgene EHD type 2 vaccine that you and your veterinarian can now get by filling out some paperwork.  The data on the vaccine looks very good, unfortunately it has come late and requires 2 doses for good protection.  That said, better late than never and it and a vaccine that contains multiple types will be available later as it undergoes testing and USDA approval.  I picked up mine from the vet school yesterday!  I have attached an article on EHD that you can read for suggestions.  It’s old (2018) and there are a couple of things I’d like to add to it….1. the new vaccine and 2. feed with insect repellent properties/immune modulators/heat stress reducers…
Next on the discussion list (maybe it should have been first) is a fall picnic planned for the 21st of September (2019) at Dominant Genetics (Rusty Karr’s) farm just east of Wapella, IL.  It was deemed by our board to be too late to organize and have our annual meeting/fundraiser this fall so it was decided this was our next best option with an annual meeting to be held in January (most likely the 11th or 18th) at the University of Illinois College of Veterinary Medicine.  The fall picnic will be a “potluck” with (hopefully) y’all showing up with some of your favorite dishes, deserts and beverages.  Rusty and I will probably be picking up roadkill to grill so be prepared!  Let’s have a 10:30 am start/tour time so we can get the coals fired up, everyone can start eating around 12:00 pm or so and we can hold a board meeting at 1:00 pm or so and visit, tour, swap lies and plan our January meeting and fundraiser.  To encourage attendance every paid member will receive a FREE straw of semen (courtesy Rusty, Doug Marsh and me), all you have to do is be present to draw out of the hat.  Buck names go in a hat, everyone draws!  And, if you would prefer mule deer semen, I will make your wish come true.  If anyone wants to bring games like bags, croquet, have a dart contest, we can try to accommodate.

Annual business meeting and fundraiser as mentioned previously will be held in January, most likely in Champaign/Urbana.  Think about participating, becoming a board member and donating to our cause.  We have had poor participation in past several years and desperately need you to come and contact those friends of yours that raise deer but are not active to join, participate and become active members of the deer raising community.  Reach out to others get them involved.  Our website and Facebook page are hopefully going to be more active and updated.  Also, if you are a member you should be receiving the quarterly newsletter from the Midwest Deer Farmers.  If you aren’t getting this, make sure your dues are paid and address list updated.  Also, we desperately need updated contact information such as email addresses, home address, phone (home/cell), farm address, website, Facebook page, or any other way that is best to contact you. (I am working off a 2014 list so excuse me!) Please, please get us updated contact information.


217-493-2958 cell

Chet Hostetler
510 South Pine Street
Arthur, IL 61911

Click HERE to link to the EHD document

Click HERE to get a printable Medgene Customer Account Application form

Click HERE to get a printable Medgene EHDV2 order form