Ongoing surveillance for the presence of chronic wasting disease in wild deer in Illinois last fall and this winter has detected 24 deer testing positive for CWD. The IDNR has received results on tests of more than 4,100 deer which were harvested by hunters or taken by IDNR personnel as part of the 2007-08 deer season sampling program. The testing has identified the first positive case of CWD from Stephenson County in northern Illinois. The other most recent cases of CWD were found in deer from Boone (7 deer), DeKalb (6) and Winnebago (10) counties. Results are still pending on more than 2,000 additional samples collected since last fall. The first case of CWD detected in Stephenson County came from a deer taken west of Freeport. IDNR staff members are collecting additional samples from deer in Stephenson County to determine if other sick deer are present. The IDNR began more intensive sampling of deer for chronic wasting disease after the first deer with CWD were found in Boone and Winnebago counties in 2002. Since then, Illinois has recorded a total of 213 deer positive for the disease in Winnebago (89 deer), Boone (82), DeKalb (22), McHenry (16), Ogle (2), LaSalle (1) and Stephenson (1) counties. CWD is a fatal neurological disease found in deer and elk. It is not known to be contagious to livestock or humans.

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