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CWD Roundup – May 2022

CWD Roundup is the National Deer Association’s (NDA) bi-monthly update on all things chronic wasting disease (CWD). We’ll provide the latest updates on CWD spread, research and policy from across North America. Updates are provided alphabetically by state and province.

Alabama

In early March, the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (ADCNR) announced that a second case of CWD in a hunter harvested, white-tailed deer had been confirmed in Lauderdale County. The first case of CWD in Alabama’s deer herd was detected in Lauderdale County in January 2022.

Idaho

In late March, the Idaho Fish and Game Commission (IDFG) modified fall deer and elk hunts in response to the recent detection of CWD in the state. Commissioners also mandated CWD testing for deer, elk and moose taken in Units 14 and 15. Changes to seasons include increased mule deer, whitetail and elk tags, and the addition of antlerless hunting opportunities.

Kentucky

In early April, the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources provided an update on its CWD Response Plan, which was activated September 8, 2021. upon an announcement from the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency (TWRA) that CWD had been detected in a mature doe in northwest Tennessee, 8 miles south of the Kentucky border. The department operated 17 check stations in the CWD Surveillance Zone and collected samples from 96% of the deer reported to the “Telecheck” check-in system. The disease was not detected in any of the 4,347 samples.

Louisiana

In early March, the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) announced that it was continuing its surveillance work in the CWD control area in the northeast Louisiana parishes of Franklin, Madison, and Tensas following the state’s first positive CWD detection in December 2021. Other than the initial case, CWD was not detected in any of the 218 samples collected in these three parishes.

Michigan

In mid-April, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources (DNR) announced the results of its 2021 surveillance efforts for CWD. Just over 7,200 deer were tested, resulting in 25 CWD-positive detections. Three cases of CWD were detected in Isabella County, which represents a new county where the disease has been found.

Minnesota

In late March, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) announced it’s updating its CWD response plan after the discovery of a wild white-tailed deer infected with CWD within the city of Grand Rapids. The response plan update will better reflect a statewide approach to disease surveillance, management, control and education.  This is the first time CWD has been detected in wild deer in this deer permit area.

Missouri

In late April, the Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) reported that it sampled and tested more than 32,000 deer for CWD between July 2021 and April 2022. Of the more than 32,000 deer sampled, 86 tested positive for disease. Of deer tested this past season, MDC found CWD-positive deer in 18 counties: Adair (2), Barry (4), Cedar (2), Christian (2), Franklin (6), Howell (1), Jefferson (12), Linn (12), Macon (10), Oregon (6), Perry (2), Pulaski (1), Putnam (1), St. Clair (1), Ste. Genevieve (15), Stone (6), Taney (2), and Washington (1). CWD-positive cases in Barry, Christian, Howell, and Washington counties marked the first detections of the disease in these counties.

North Carolina

In late March, the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission (WRC) announced that a sample collected from a hunter-harvested, white-tailed deer in Yadkin County tested positive for CWD. This is the first case of CWD detected in North Carolina’s deer herd. The deer was harvested in December 2021, and sample was sent in by a taxidermist through a cooperator program established by the Wildlife Commission.

In mid-April, WRC Executive Director Cameron Ingram announced he invoked Emergency Powers to activate a localized response plan to assist with the detection and isolation of CWD in Yadkin and Surry counties and surrounding areas. The response plan includes creation of surveillance zones, transport prohibitions and other regulatory changes.

Pennsylvania

In mid-April, the Pennsylvania Game Commission (PGC) today announced the creation of a new Chronic Wasting Disease Management Area (DMA) and the expansion of two existing DMAs. The new DMA 7 was created when CWD recently was detected at a captive facility in Lycoming County. This DMA represents the fifth DMA to be created due to a captive facility. DMA 4 also will expand following detection of CWD at a captive facility in southern Lancaster County. CWD has not been detected among free-ranging deer in DMA 4. Finally, DMA 2 is expanding in two locations as a result of CWD detections in wild and captive deer.

Tennessee

In late-April, the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency (TWRA) confirmed the detection of CWD in a pair of deer in Hardin County. The CWD-positive deer makes Hardin County CWD positive and neighboring Decatur County is now classified as a high-risk CWD county due to the location of where one of the positive deer was detected.

Virginia

In early March, the Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources (DWR) released the results of CWD surveillance from within the Department’s three CWD Disease Management Areas (DMA) for the 2021–2022 deer hunting season.

  • Nearly 650 deer from DMA1 were sampled for CWD. Nineteen white-tailed deer originating from DMA1 were confirmed to be infected with CWD; 17 CWD-positive deer were reported from Frederick County and a single CWD-positive deer were reported from both Shenandoah and Clarke counties.
  • 1,930 deer from DMA2 were sampled for CWD. Four white-tailed deer from DMA2 were confirmed to be infected with CWD; two CWD-positive deer were reported in Fauquier County and single CWD-positive deer were reported from both Loudoun and Culpeper counties.
  • 1,259 deer from DMA 3 were sampled for CWD. Two hunter-harvested deer originating from DMA3 were confirmed to be infected with CWD. One CWD-positive deer was harvested in Montgomery County and the second CWD-positive deer was harvested in Floyd County. This was the first CWD detection in Floyd County.

Wyoming

In late April, the Wyoming Game and Fish Department (WGFD) announced that it tested 6,884 samples from big game animals for CWD in 2021. Of the 6,876 samples, 831 were positive for the disease. Every county in Wyoming is now CWD-positive.

Federal

In mid-March, President Joe Biden signed into law an omnibus bill appropriating $10 million for state wildlife agencies to fund CWD management. The legislation, which is intended to fund the government through the fiscal year, increases federal funding for CWD management by $3 million from the previous year, and doubles the amount allocated in 2020.

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