Buying and Selling Deer: A Must-Keep Checklist

Originally appeared in the Summer 2019 Issue of Whitetails of Louisiana

Both the seller and the buyer of deer need to agree on crucial sale details, in order for the transaction to be as smooth and successful as possible. Just ask two seasoned deer farmers, Daniel Thomas of Daniel Thomas Whitetails in Springhill, Louisiana and Brandon Bollinger of 2 Brothers Whitetails in Loranger, Louisiana. Both will stress how important it is, for seller and buyer alike, to agree beforehand on the best way to get purchased deer from Point A to Point B. The following is a checklist every deer farmer should cut out and keep handy for the future.

  1. Determine who is going to transport the deer - the seller or the buyer. If the seller is transporting, agree on the price per loaded mile to do this. Payment terms should also be discussed at this time as well.
  2. Use an air-conditioned trailer, if possible, and agree to avoid transporting deer when the temperature will be higher than 65 degrees for the day. (Cold weather is generally not a detrimental factor when shipping deer.)
  3. Agree on which party is responsible for furnishing the transport anesthesia drugs as well as the reversal drugs. Buyers must also be informed as to what drugs the deer have been given in the last 45 days, as it could affect the potency of any trailering drugs given.
  4. Determine if the seller or buyer is responsible for vaccinating, worming, as well as for providing shipping antibiotics, which can help avoid an unwanted and contagious case of shipping fever.
  5. Remember to microchip and ear tag every alternative livestock sold, as this is a requirement for transportation according to The Louisiana Department of Agriculture (and possibly your state’s Dept. of Ag). Within 10 days of transferring alternative livestock, sellers are required to submit an alternative livestock notification form with microchip and ear tag numbers of all sold alternative livestock in order to remain in compliance with state law.
  6. Agree on when purchased deer become the sole possession of the buyer, and the seller is no longer responsible for the outcome of the sale.
  7. Verify that Louisiana Department of Agriculture (or your local Dept. of Ag.) pen numbers are exchanged at the time of the sale
  8. Determine who will be darting the deer at the time of the sale and, if a mistake is made, who is responsible. “Believe me, this will make your life so much easier,” Thomas said. “Many issues and problems can be avoided by simply agreeing on things ahead of time.”