Due to the regular amending of regulations in Minnesota, it is recommended that before hunting you check these CWD regulations, as well as those of any other states or provinces in which you will be hunting or traveling through while transporting cervid carcasses. The contact information for Minnesota can be seen below:
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Minnesota- University of Minnesota Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory
1333 Gortner Avenue St. Paul, MN 55108
612-625-8780 or 800-605-8787
Olmsted, Fillmore and Winona counties
A white-tailed deer, recently discovered in southeastern Minnesota near Oronoco, exhibited some symptoms consistent with Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) but was not infected with the disease.
“We appreciate the public awareness about the disease and its potential effects on the deer population,” said Lou Cornicelli, big game program coordinator for the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR). “We are relieved this animal did not have CWD.”
A landowner observed the adult male deer on his property walking in a tight circle for a long period of time. He reported the deer to the DNR, which euthanized the animal and took it to the University of Minnesota Veterinary Diagnostic Lab for testing.
Deer showing signs of possibly having CWD always are tested when discovered, Cornicelli said. This is the first sick deer found and tested in the CWD zone – which stretches from Wanamingo, Zumbrota and Zumbro Falls southward to Kasson, Byron and Rochester – since sharpshooting ended last winter. None of the 1,181 deer tested in the area have tested positive for the disease.
The CWD zone was established earlier this year after an archery hunter harvested a CWD-positive deer in November 2010. Sampling was conducted last winter, and a deer feeding ban was enacted. Efforts to continue to monitor the area for additional cases of CWD and measures to help prevent its potential spread are in place for the fall hunting season.
“White-tailed deer contract a variety of diseases that express neurological symptoms,” Cornicelli said. “Further testing is ongoing to determine what affected this animal.”
Individuals should continue to notify DNR if they see a deer exhibiting CWD-like symptoms, which can include walking in circles, drooling, staggering, emaciation and a lack of fear toward humans.
More information about CWD, the DNR’s fall surveillance plans, and new regulations for the CWD zone in southeastern Minnesota are available online.
ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) – The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources is setting up a special deer-hunting area in southeastern Minnesota where a wild deer tested positive for chronic wasting disease.
The new CWD management area features a 23-day firearms season.
The Star Tribune reports submission of samples for CWD testing will be required. Carcass import and export restrictions also will apply to the area.
A deer tested positive for the disease near Pine Island last November. The DNR later tested hundreds of deer within a 10-mile radius of where the infected deer was found. No other deer tested positive for the disease.
The disease is fatal for deer, elk and moose, but there is no evidence it spreads to humans.
Winter sampling is complete in southeastern Minnesota and none of 1,180 deer taken during the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources’ (DNR) disease surveillance effort tested positive for Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD).
“We looked hard and found nothing,” said Lou Cornicelli, DNR big game coordinator. “This suggests the infection rate is low, which is very good news.”
Landowners and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) sharpshooters took 752 yearling or older deer during the sampling. The DNR also tested 87 deer that died from vehicle collisions or other means.
The DNR initiated sharpshooting this winter following the discovery of a CWD-positive deer in November in the Pine Island area. Shooting permits for 315 landowners expired Feb. 28. USDA sharpshooting ended April 1. All laboratory tests were completed Wednesday, April 6. Most landowners kept the deer they shot. Deer taken by sharpshooters were donated to individuals who signed up to receive them.
Cornicelli praised local landowners for their cooperation in the surveillance effort. “They opened their lands. They shot deer. They helped in so many ways. We thank them for that and look forward to working with them in the future,” he said.
All sampling efforts took place within a 10-mile radius of where an archery hunter harvested the a CWD-positive deer in November. Thus far, it is the only wild deer to test positive for CWD in Minnesota.
Cornicelli said the removal of more than a thousand deer from the Pine Island area will minimize the potential for the disease to spread from animal to animal.
With the winter surveillance period over, DNR will begin planning for changes to this fall’s deer season in the area. Those plans will be announced later this spring but hunters can expect a new CWD management zone, mandatory sample submission, carcass transport restrictions, liberalized seasons and increased bag limits.
Details of these changes and other CWD information will be posted on the DNR’s website .
CWD is a fatal animal brain disease. The National Center for Disease Control (CDC) and World Health Organization (WHO) have found no scientific evidence that the disease presents a health risk to humans. The disease is found in 14 other states and two Canadian provinces, including Wisconsin, North Dakota and South Dakota.
The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) received confirmation from a national laboratory on Jan. 25 verifying that the sample from a southeastern Minnesota white-tailed deer tested positive for Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD). The finding by the National Veterinary Services Laboratory at Ames, Iowa, had been expected and confirms a preliminary diagnosis by the University of Minnesota.
The DNR announced on Jan. 21 that a deer harvested by an archer in November 2010 near Pine Island likely would test positive for CWD, a fatal brain disease that affects deer, elk and moose but not cattle or humans.
The DNR is implementing its CWD response plan, the first step of which involves an aerial survey of deer numbers in the Pine Island area. During the next two weeks, DNR will be working with landowners, collecting additional information and will share its plans and findings at a public meeting in February.
A preliminary screening test strongly indicates that a deer harvested by a hunter last November near Pine Island in southeast Minnesota had Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD), according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR). CWD is fatal to deer, elk and moose but not known to affect human health.
If the National Veterinary Services Laboratory in Ames, Iowa, confirms the University of Minnesota’s preliminary diagnosis, it marks the first time CWD has been found in Minnesota’s wild deer herd. An official confirmation is expected by next week.
“This is very unfortunate,” said Tom Landwehr, DNR commissioner. “Minnesotans have done much to prevent CWD from entering our wild deer population. The good news is that we are well prepared for an attempt to control the disease and to possibly eliminate it.”
The DNR is already implementing the state’s CWD response plan. In the weeks ahead, the DNR will take steps to learn more about how prevalent the disease is in the area and will take actions based on that information.
In states where CWD has become well established, efforts to eliminate it from wild deer populations have been unsuccessful. The disease, if unmanaged, can spread and occur at high enough rates to impact long-term deer populations.
“We found this case of CWD early because we were actively looking for it,” said Landwehr. “Since 2002, we’ve tested more than 32,000 hunter-harvested deer, elk and moose as part of an early detection strategy. We’ve long believed the best way to manage this disease is to find it early and then react quickly.”
The deer presumed to have CWD was taken by a hunter this past fall about three miles southwest of Pine Island in Olmsted County. The hunter allowed the DNR to take a lymph node sample from the deer when he registered it. Recent microscopic analysis of that sample strongly indicates that the animal had CWD. The hunter has been informed of the results. It is not known how the deer contracted the disease.
Lou Cornicelli, DNR big game coordinator, will lead the agency’s CWD response team. He said the critical first step is to conduct an aerial survey to determine the number and distribution of deer in the Pine Island area. Because this area of the state is almost entirely in private ownership, the second step will be to talk with landowners in the area to seek their cooperation in collecting additional samples and to identify where additional samples can be collected.
Sample collection could take the form of a late winter deer hunt, landowner shooting permits, or sharpshooting in conjunction with cooperating landowners who provide permission. The purpose of the sampling is to collect needed additional CWD samples to assess disease distribution, and also to reduce the potential for the disease to spread.
Michelle Carstensen, the DNR’s wildlife health program leader, said the prevalence of CWD is likely low. “We sampled 524 deer this past hunting season in the Pine Island area and found only one that appears to have CWD,” said Carstensen. She added that the DNR did not find CWD in a total of 2,685 samples taken throughout southeastern Minnesota in 2009 or 500 samples taken in 2008 along the Wisconsin border, from Houston County northward to St. Croix State Park in Pine County.
The DNR has been on the lookout for CWD since 2002, when it was first detected at a domestic elk farm in central Minnesota. In recent years it has put additional focus on southeastern Minnesota. That’s because the disease was detected in 2008 at a domestic elk farm near Pine Island, and because southeastern Minnesota abuts Wisconsin which has had CWD for many years. The domestic elk herd at Pine Island was eliminated after a seven-year-old female was found to have CWD. Three other elk were found to have CWD during the removal effort.
Though it is not known exactly how CWD is transmitted, it is thought to be primarily from animal-to-animal by infectious agents in feces, urine or saliva. CWD can also persist in the environment and may be contracted from contaminated soil. The movement of live animals is one of the greatest risk factors in spreading the disease to new areas.
CWD is a fatal, animal brain disease. The National Center for Disease Control (CDC) and World Health Organization have found no scientific evidence that the disease presents a health risk to humans. Still, the CDC advises against eating animals known to have CWD. The disease is found in 13 other states and two Canadian provinces, including Wisconsin, North Dakota and South Dakota.