ISVMA Illinois State Veterinary Medical Association
  Join the ISVMA

March 6 , 2008


Volume V, No. 18



An electronic newsletter highlighting veterinary issues for Illinois veterinarians

Northern Harrier
Northern Harrier

©Peter S. Weber
click on picture to view larger image

In this Issue

ISVMA Lobby Day - Plan to Attend

ISVMA Legislative Activists

ISVMA Spring Seminars

ISVMA Has Moved

About the Photo

Contact Us

Contact Us




ISVMA Lobby Day is April 9, 2008 - Plan to Attend!

ISVMA will hold its Fourth Annual Lobby Day on April 9, 2008 in Springfield, IL. All veterinary professionals are invited to attend!

The Lobby Day will begin at 9:00 a.m. with a briefing session from the ISVMA lobbyists at the Hoogland Center for the Arts, 420 South Sixth Street in Springfield. We will provide instructions and support if you have never lobbied before; and all participants will receive position papers on key issues to share with your legislators. If you don't know who your legislators are, we can help you find out!

The ISVMA Lobby Day is fun, exciting and rewarding. It will be an experience you'll never forget.

If you plan to attend, please let us know by sending an email to

ISVMA Legislative Action Center

*Who are the top ten activists?

ISVMA is proud to be a national leader in state advocacy organization and success. The ISVMA executive director and lobbyist Terry Steczo have both been asked to make presentations at national and state conferences on developing effective grassroots political networks.

The success of the ISVMA advocacy effort is directly related to the participation of its members. We're doing better than most; but we should work to set the bar much higher!

Since the ISVMA Legislative Action Center was introduced, we have had 771 veterinarians and veterinary students contact their legislators using our simple advocacy software. These grassroots advocates have contacted 131 of the 177 members of the Illinois General Assembly.

ISVMA Legislative Action Center
Top Ten Users

# of
Jane Lohmar Family Pet Animal Hospital
Ronald Gill, DVM Gill Veterinary Clinic
Richard Rossman, DVM Glen Oak Dog & Cat Hospital
Peter Weber, CAE ISVMA
Gregory Mauck, DVM Kaskaskia Valley Animal Hospital
Craig Stevenson, DVM Sandwich Veterinary Hospital
John Ehrhardt, DVM McNabb Veterinary
Allen Barclay, DVM Bushnell Veterinary Service
James Wahl, DVM Avenue Animal Hospital, PC
Tracy Myers, DVM Whitney Veterinary Hospital, PC


Advocacy isn't just measured in the number of times you have sent messages using the ISVMA Legislative Action Center. We have many other veterinarian and student members that have developed relationships with their legislators that allow them to pick up the phone or drop by the legislator's office to talk to them about issues that impact the veterinary profession; as well as the health and welfare of animals and the public.

Some notable examples:

· House Bill 4843 (Veterinary Student Loan Repayment Program) was introduced by Representative David Reis after he talked with Dr. Ronald Gill about some of the major issues facing the profession. Dr. Gill told him about the mounting debt for veterinary students and the shortage of veterinarians in certain types of practice. Representative Reis responded by drafting a bill with input from the ISVMA and the University of Illinois to try to address these issues.

· Beginning in 2003, Illinois veterinarians were the unfortunate targets of an audit assault from the Illinois Department of Revenue that was predicated upon a constantly-changing definition of compliance. The ISVMA worked for more than two years to develop a new regulation that clarified the responsibility of veterinary practices and ran into numerous setbacks and delays. The logjam finally broke when Dr. Kimberly Serbe spoke to a personal friend about our frustrations. The personal friend happened to be the Governor's top legislative aide. As soon as he understood the issues, he became an advocate for ISVMA and the regulation was adopted.

· During the first ISVMA Lobby Day in 2004, a team of ISVMA members went to the Capitol to visit their legislators on a number of issues identified by ISVMA. They presented the legislators fact sheets and introduced themselves by offering their assistance on any issue related to the veterinary profession and the health and welfare of animals and the public. Dr. Steve Dullard and Dr. John Ehrhardt visited their local state representative, Rep. Frank Mautino, and it sparked a strong relationship that has benefited ISVMA on a number of issues. Representative Mautino is a well-respected legislator (by both parties!) and has been able to use his position as downstate caucus leader to help ISVMA influence a number of key bills.

You would be surprised how a simple phone call or visit to a legislator can contribute to the success of your association's advocacy efforts. Please take the time to get involved. It is a small investment with a huge dividend!

ISVMA Spring Seminar Series - Register Now!

ISVMA is proud to offer another outstanding learning opportunity for veterinary professionals. With support from IDEXX Laboratories, the 2008 ISVMA Spring Seminar Series will be offered in the following locations:

April 19 in Springfield, IL
April 20 in Fairview Heights, IL
April 26 in Chicago, IL
April 27 in Lisle, IL

Please visit the ISVMA website for program information and registration.

*The 2008 ISVMA Spring Seminar Series is generously sponsored by:


ISVMA Has Moved!

The ISVMA officially moved into its new headquarters on Friday, February 29 and opened the new office on March 3, 2008.


Please remember to update your records with our new contact information:

Illinois State Veterinary Medical Association

1121 Chatham Road

Springfield, IL 62704


(217) 546-8381 (phone)

(217) 546-5633 (fax)

About the Photo

The Northern Harrier (Circus cyaneus) are predatory birds that soar low (10-30 ft) above fields, short grass, pastures and other types of open country. Their prey are usually taken on ground and consist mainly of small mammals but also birds, frogs, small reptiles, crustaceans and insects. Unlike most hawks, harriers can use their sense of hearing to help locate prey. Harriers have an owl-like facial disk to help with directional hearing and soft feathers for a quieter flight.

Harriers are unusual in that there is a greater difference between male and female plumage than is typical of raptors. Females are brown above with varying degrees of brown and buff streaking below. Males are gray above with an unmarked lighter color below; they also have black wingtips. Juveniles are brown above and plain orange-brown below.

Northern Harriers reside in throughout North America; and parts of Europe and Asia. These magnificent birds of prey roost and nest on the ground, usually in marsh or prairie lands that are sheltered by low shrubs or reeds. They often in groups in a traditional location. They are often polygamous, with a single male mating with 2 - 3 or more females. This may be a result of colonial breeding.

In migration through the state, they will hunt in pastures and fields.

Northern Harriers are listed as an Endangered Species in Illinois, largely because their breeding habitats (high value) are large areas of prairie and marsh. Such habitat has become scarce in the state.

Some interesting facts:

· Many birds of prey utilize display flights during courtship. The male Northern Harrier’s courtship flight is a series of dramatic “barrel rolls” over his territory.

· Harriers and Short-eared Owls have similar ecological requirements - nesting habitat, prey species, etc. - and there is evidence of interspecific competition.

· The scientific name comes from the Greek words kirkos, meaning a circle and refers to flying in circles, and cyan, a blue color alluding to the color of the male bird. Harrier is from the Old English word hergian, and means to harass, ravage, or plunder. This bird has also been called a Marsh Hawk or Hen Harrier.

I photographed this female Northern Harrier on February 9, 2008 in the Jim Edgar Panther Creek State Fish and Wildlife Area as she hunted over the restored prairie.

Contact Us

Please feel free to forward this issue of the E-SOURCE to veterinarians that are not receiving ISVMA’s electronic newsletter. Any ISVMA member may subscribe to the E-SOURCE for free:

If you wish to add your name to the recipient list, send an e-mail to and ask to receive the E-SOURCE newsletter.

ISVMA values your membership and does not want to send you any unwanted email. If you would like to be removed from this member service, please email


Illinois State Veterinary Medical Association
133 South Fourth St., Suite 202
Springfield, IL 62701

Phone: (217) 523-8387

Copyright © 2003-2006 Illinois State Veterinary Medical Association

Web design by Rareheron Web Design, Portland, Oregon