Monday, October 13, 2008

WISCONSIN NEWS: New Case of CWD At Hunting Preserve

For the first time in nearly four years, a Wisconsin hunting preserve has confirmed a positive case of Chronic Wasting Disease within its fences. Last week, the state's agriculture department announced that a white-tailed deer owned by Alligator Creek Whitetails LLC near Junction City in Portage County tested positive for CWD. The animal was killed on September 20 and was tested as part of standard procedure.

According to State Veterinarian Dr. Robert Ehlenfeldt, the seven-year-old doe was one of about 150 deer in the preserve. He says the Animal Health Division of the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture will investigate the animal's history and trace movements of deer onto and off the property to find out whether other herds may have been exposed to the disease.

Deer herds on hunting preserves are generally not on the state's CWD monitoring program. However, new rules require that all farm-raised deer and elk 16 months or older must be tested when they die, go to slaughter or are killed.

Ehlenfeldt quarantined the Alligator Creek herd immediately. The business will be allowed to conduct hunts through January 15, because properly handled dead animals leaving the premises do not pose a disease risk. Hunters must be notified of the quarantine and the reason for it.

This is the first new CWD-infected herd on a Wisconsin farm since January 2005. To date, 97 farm-raised animals in Wisconsin have tested positive for CWD on eight farms and hunting preserves, including 82 on a single Portage County operation.

Source: Wisconsin Ag Connection


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