WAILUKU, MAUI (HawaiiNewsNow) - Maui County is informing farmers, ranchers and other landowners that there is a new resource for them to contact if they are having problems with invasive Axis deer on their property.
"These deer are a menace to our farmlands and ranches and cause about a million dollars in damage to crops and property every year," said Mayor Alan Arakawa. "The formation of the MADHC is our first step towards controlling this invasive species and turning a pest into a resource."
Maui County is funding the Maui Axis Deer Harvesting Cooperative (MADHC) with $37,500 from the Mayor's Office of Economic Development.
According to county officials, MADHC will have a deer certified and inspected by USDA and then have the option to sell the deer meat to commercial entities.
"The survey conducted by Maui County Agriculture Specialist Kenneth Yamamura confirms the severity of the problem to the pocketbooks of farmers and ranchers in Maui County, not to mention the dangers to motorists," said County Environmental Coordinator Rob Parsons, a member of the Maui Axis Deer Working Group. "We expect that the hunters' cooperative will provide a valuable, vital service in a professional manner, as one of many strategies to control impacts from the ever-growing numbers of deer."
Those interested in deer removal from their property should contact the MADHC at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (808) 269-4625. For more information about the MADHC contact Phyllis Robinson at email@example.com or at (808) 874-1239. Or call Maui County Environmental Coordinator Rob Parsons at (808) 270-8250.