CARNDUFF — Another wild mule deer is suspected of having Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) in Saskatchewan.
The positive test result came from a mule deer shot this fall southeast of Saskatchewan Landing Provincial Park near Stewart Valley. The sample from the two-year-old mule deer buck has been sent to the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) lab in Ontario for confirmation.
Dr. Trent Bollinger, a researcher at the Canadian Co-operative Wildlife Health Centre, says the latest case provides even more reason for hunters to turn in deer heads. “We have focused on areas where we had some cases. We need to look province-wide. It is important to find out where this disease is found,” Dr. Bollinger said.
CWD is a progressive, fatal disease that affects the nervous system of members of the deer family. It is known as transmissible spongiform encephalopathy or TSE. How the disease is spread is not known and there is no treatment or vaccine currently available to prevent the disease.
Meanwhile, the whitetail rifle season starts on Monday for the southern part of the province.
Lorne Scott, executive director with the Saskatchewan Wildlife Federation, believes CWD will impact the hunting industry.
“It could have a significant impact on the hunting industry if more animals are discovered …” Scott said.
Over the past four years Saskatchewan Environment has tested approximately 5,500 samples from across the province.