© John DeCoste - kingscountynews.ca
PC MLA for Kings North and Agriculture critic John Lohr is calling on the government to institute a streamlined nuisance animal removal permit system for farmers suffering crop damage.
The Nova Scotia Federation of Agriculture continues to hear concerns about damage and dollar losses in agricultural crops caused by wildlife. Famers have abandoned fields and crops because of this damage. This loss of production makes it difficult for them to meet their obligations to the Farm Loan Board and other lenders, and it has had a negative effect on the rural economy, Lohr said.
Currently, the process is based on biology and protecting the deer population.
‚ÄúAgriculture is one of the sectors Ivany said was still a dominant element of the rural private sector economy,‚ÄĚ Lohr said. ‚ÄúI‚Äôd like to see government work with farmers to find a way to mitigate the economic impacts of wildlife damage.‚ÄĚ
In addition to streamlining the permit application process, Lohr recommends the government work with famers and the Nova Scotia Federation of Anglers and Hunters to find a possible solution.
‚ÄúThe federation has offered assistance to the farming community in the past,‚ÄĚ Lohr said. ‚ÄúIf the process for farmers and hunters to obtain nuisance permits was streamlined, this problem could be addressed. It might be a win-win situation.‚ÄĚ