MADISON — Five deer and elk herds have been quarantined within the expanded boundaries of the Department of Natural Resources chronic wasting disease eradication zone.
All are enrolled in the Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection’s CWD monitoring program and none have ever shown any sign of the disease on their farms, said Dr. Robert Ehlenfeldt, acting state veterinarian.
“Farmed animals in this zone may have been exposed to CWD through contact with infected wild deer. Since there is no live-animal test, quarantining is the only way to assure that infected animals don’t get to farms outside the eradication zone,” Ehlenfeldt said.
When CWD was first discovered in the wild whitetail herd near Mount Horeb, two farms that fell inside the original eradication zone were quarantined. They remain quarantined. Now the DNR has expanded the zone, based on test results from hunts over the past year. These farms are within that new zone.
The herds are owned by:
-Dan Butteris, Dodgeville, fallow deer
-Robert Eggers, Cobb, red deer
-Elk Valley Ranch LLC, Spring Green, elk
-Brad Peck, Spring Green, whitetail deer at Peck’s Farm Market West
-John Straka, Spring Green, elk
The quarantine means that no live deer or elk can move off the premises, except to go directly to slaughter with the appropriate documentation. Any animals slaughtered will need to be tested for CWD. The producers may sell meat and antler velvet, which is a major product from elk and is often used as a nutritional supplement in the Far East.
Quarantines may be released if herd owners kill their animals for testing and do not restock with deer or elk, but there are no state or federal funds available to compensate them.
Eight other herds remain under quarantine in Wisconsin: two within the original eradication zone, two associated with traceouts from an infected Minnesota herd, one associated with a Manitowoc County elk herd that had a positive animal from Minnesota, and three associated with last fall’s discovery of CWD on farms in Portage and Walworth counties.