PIERRE, S.D. – Current results from South Dakota’s 2005 Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) testing reveal that four deer and three elk have tested positive for the disease.

Since July 1, 2005, samples for 2,979 animals have been collected for testing. Most samples are from the Black Hills and from prairie hunting units in Fall River, Custer and eastern Pennington counties of western South Dakota. Most samples were taken from hunter-harvested animals. Specific numbers and species tested include:

  • 741 elk.

  • 746 mule deer.

  • 1492 white-tailed deer.

As of Jan. 6, results on 2,252 samples have returned from the South Dakota State University Diagnostic Laboratory or from Wind Cave National Park. Returned samples include:

  • 553 elk.

  • 554 mule deer.

  • 1145 white-tailed deer.

Of the 2,252 samples tested to date, four CWD positive deer and three CWD positive elk have been found. A summary of these seven animals and how they were detected includes:

  1. Male mule deer from unit 27A in Fall River County (sick/surveillance).

  2. Male white-tailed deer from unit BD4 in Custer County (sick/surveillance).

  3. Male elk from unit H3A in Fall River County (hunter harvest).

  4. Male elk from unit H5A in Pennington County (hunter harvest).

  5. Female elk from Wind Cave National Park (sick/surveillance).

  6. Male mule deer from unit 27A in Fall River County (hunter harvest).

  7. Male mule deer from unit 27A in Fall River County (hunter harvest).

To date, South Dakota has found 40 cases of CWD (28 deer and 12 elk) in free ranging animals since testing began in 1997. Wind Cave National Park accounts for 13 of these animals (5 elk, 8 deer). A total of 12,032 wild deer and elk have been tested for CWD in South Dakota since testing began in 1997.