Yearly Archives: 2004

Fish and Game Notified of CWD Kill From Wyoming

A national surveillance program that encourages states to exchange information on Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) cases has proved its worth in an incident involving an Idaho deer hunter.

The Idaho resident hunted in Wyoming, killing a mule deer which he brought back to eastern Idaho. The hunter submitted tissue from the deer in a voluntary surveillance program operated by Wyoming Game and Fish.

When indicators of CWD was found in the deer, Wyoming authorities notified the hunter and Idaho Fish and Game.

Idaho big game manager Brad Compton said the department had made contact with the hunter and found out where he had disposed of the deer carcass. A Fish and Game biologist was assigned December 20 to retrieve the carcass for disposal. Compton noted that Fish and Game will continue to make every reasonable effort to “minimize the risk to our deer and elk populations.” While Idahoans have been bringing home deer and elk killed in Wyoming for years, the surveillance program enables Idaho to increase its vigilance in preventing the disease.

CWD affects the brains and nervous systems of deer and elk. It is believed to be caused by an errant protein called a prion.

Wyoming has known about CWD in certain deer herds for more than 30 years. Idaho has so far never detected the disease in any deer or elk but has increased its surveillance dramatically in recent years. Idaho Fish and Game employees sample deer in check stations for CWD and look for it in animals killed outside hunting seasons, such as roadkills. Scrutiny is most intense along the Idaho -Wyoming border.

Though CWD has drawn much attention from hunters and wildlife authorities in recent years, the World Health Organization has said that no connection to human disease has been made.

New Deer Hunting Regulations in Effect January 4 for DEZ

Milwaukee, Wis. – Deer hunters are reminded that regulations will change in the chronic wasting Disease Eradication Zone (DEZ) after the close of the regular gun and bow seasons on Jan. 3, 2005.

Beginning Jan. 4, only DEZ landowners or persons hunting under the authority of a landowner permit can hunt in the DEZ. Landowner permits are valid for bow hunting and gun hunting through March 31.

“These permits are only available to persons owning land in a DEZ. Landowners in the Herd Reduction Zone are not eligible for these permits. Hunters must still meet the legal, age and hunter safety requirements for obtaining a hunting license in Wisconsin,” noted wildlife supervisor Tami Ryan. She added the reminder that all deer hunters are required to wear blaze orange.

The DEZ landowner and hunter permits are only available through license vendors or DNR service centers for a $2.00 processing fee. Landowner permits are available to persons owning five acres or more within a DEZ.

Persons owning less than five acres in a DEZ can call DNR’s toll free number (1-877-WISC-CWD) to find out if they are eligible to receive a permit.

Also, with the close of the regular gun seasons and hunting under the authority of a landowner permit, bow and gun hunters can harvest a deer of either sex without having to Earn-A-Buck. The requirement that hunters must first shoot an antlerless deer before they can harvest a buck will no longer be in effect as of Jan. 4.

“We revert to an either sex season after January 3 simply because bucks lose their antlers during winter months, making it difficult for hunters to distinguish bucks from does,” said Ryan.

In Walworth and Rock counties, the eastern DEZ includes roughly the southeast quarter of Rock County and the southwest portion of Walworth County.

Hunters can take their deer to one of the following locations for registration and head collection:

Big Foot Beach State Park, 1452 Highway H, Lake Geneva. By appointment only: call 262-424-1112.

Chad’s Taxidermy, 1102 Larson Rd., Clinton, By appointment only: call 608-921-5666

Corners Inn Bar & Grill, W9002 STH 11, Delavan, daily from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Fontana Public Works, 300 Wild Duck Rd., Fontana, Monday – Friday from 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Chronic Wasting Disease Update

CWD UPDATE December 17, 2004

The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission reports the confirmation of a case of CWD on the Cornhusker Wildlife Management Area, near the town of Grand Island in Hall County. The positive was a 2½-year-old whitetail buck. This is approximately 250 east of the Panhandle where all previous cases have been found. This new finding is causing a reassessment of our statewide CWD management strategies. The nearest captive cervid facility is 10 miles away and has been testing their elk since 2000 with no positives found. Agency staff has collected an additional 67 deer from the immediate area to test for CWD.

The National Agricultural Biosecurity Center Consortium has issued a report titled “Carcass Disposal: A Comprehensive Review”. The report covers disposal of carcasses involved in biosecurity events but may be helpful for reviewing in light of carcass disposal issues with CWD. It can be accessed at http://fss.k-state.edu/research/books/carcassdispfiles/Carcass%20Disposal.html.

The Natural Resources Minister of the Province of Ontario has announced that Ontario will ban canned hunts. The ban will be implemented through a regulation change under the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Act and will take effect April 30, 2005 in order to give operators time to make changes in their business. An estimated 200 to 400 animals are hunted in captivity each year in Ontario, mainly wild boar and non-native deer. The change will affect only hunting behind high wire, not those animals raised for meat production or other purposes.

Twenty-three elk shot by officials from Alberta have been tested for CWD and the disease was not detected in the herd. The animals were shot after they were discovered in an area where elk do not normally occur and it was suspected that they were farm raised and released into the area on purpose. Fish and Wildlife Staff shot a total of 28 elk but only 23 of them produced brain tissue samples for testing.

Testing of cervids in Europe for CWD has been very limited. Since 1999, the following countries have tested cervids; Germany (5,000), Belgium (38), Denmark (16), Italy (18), Finland (912), Sweden (8), and United Kingdom (1,652). Species tested include roe deer, red deer, fallow deer, white-tailed deer, reindeer, and moose. These numbers may not be complete and at least Germany and United Kingdom plan on increasing their testing.

Chronic Wasting Disease Researchers Track Deer

New research on how far deer travel each year may help state wildlife managers predict how far and fast Chronic Wasting Disease will spread. The results of tracking 80 radio-collared deer in the CWD hot zone this year found most adult does and bucks stay within one square mile. Young bucks travel about five miles from their birthplace. Researchers say that means the CWD hot zone could expand by about five miles a year.

But the research by University of Wisconsin wildlife ecologist Nancy Mathews also found a few young females make long exploratory round trips. In one case, a young doe walked more than a hundred miles from Mount Horeb to Freeport, Illinois and back. Mathews says that kind of movement could spread the disease further. She says if these deer are infected, then the potential for the spread of the disease is as far as these deer actually move. However, it’s not known whether the wayward deer in the study are infected. Scientists still aren’t sure whether CWD is spread by saliva, urine, feces or infected soil.

Mathews says her research also shows a significant number of deer are staying on land owned by people who oppose the state’s efforts to fight the disease by drastically reducing the deer herd. She says ultimately, if this pattern continues, the deer that remain on the landscape will be on land that is not being harvested as intensively and by default they become refuges. Mathews says such refuges could become safe harbors for infected deer making it more difficult to eradicate the disease.

CWD Eradication Zone: Deer Hunting Changes In Store After January 3, 2005

FITCHBURG – Hunters are reminded that the playing field changes in the chronic wasting disease (CWD) Eradication Zones after the close of the regular gun and bow seasons on Jan. 3, 2005.

Landowner Permits Beginning Jan. 4, only DEZ landowners or persons hunting under the authority of a landowner permit can hunt in the DEZ through March 31. Landowner permits are valid for bow hunting and gun hunting.

“These permits are ONLY available to persons owning land in a DEZ. Landowners in the Herd Reduction Zone are not eligible for these permits. Hunters must still meet the legal, age and hunter safety requirements for obtaining a hunting license in Wisconsin,” noted DNR CWD project leader Al Crossley, Fitchburg.

The DEZ landowner and hunter permits are only available through license vendors or DNR service centers for a $2.00 processing fee. Landowner permits are available to persons owning five acres or more within a DEZ.

Persons owning less than five acres in a DEZ can call DNR’s toll free number (1-877-WISC-CWD) to fine out if they are eligible to receive a permit.

The western DEZ encompasses 1352 square miles and includes much of Iowa County, western Dane County, and parts of Columbia, Green, Richland and Sauk Counties.

No More Earn-A-Buck Also, with the close of the regular gun seasons and hunting under the authority of a landowner permit, bow and gun hunters can harvest a deer of either sex without having to Earn-A-Buck. The requirement that hunters must first shoot an antlerless deer before they can harvest a buck will no longer be in effect as of Jan. 4.

“We revert to an either sex season after January 3 simply because bucks lose their antlers during winter months, making it difficult for hunters to distinguish bucks from does,” said Mr. Crossley,

New DNR Run Registration/Sampling Station Hours Again beginning on Jan. 4, DNR will reduce the number of agency run registration/sampling sites from six to five in the western DEZ with the closure of the Arena station and also cut back on some operating days.

Remaining open will be the DNR run stations at Eagle Mart Stop-N-Go, 8029 STH 18/151, Barneveld; Norslein’s Wood Works, 4738 STH 78, Black Earth; Countryside Lanes, 1255 CTH F, Hollandale; STH 80 Boat Landing on the Wisconsin River at Muscoda; and the Lone Rock Unit of the Lower Wisconsin State Riverway, one mile west of Lone Rock on STH 14.

Hours of operation at Black Earth, Hollandale, Lone Rock and Muscoda will be from 9:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays. Barneveld will be open seven days a week from 9:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.