State’s Trace Back Finds Second Positive CWD in Herd Directly Linked to Index Herd A second positive case of chronic wasting disease (CWD) in New York State has been confirmed in a white-tailed deer from a captive herd in Oneida County that is directly linked to the herd where a white-tailed doe was found positive for CWD earlier this week.

CWD is a transmissible disease that affects the brain and central nervous system of deer and elk. There is no evidence that CWD is linked to disease in humans or domestic livestock other than deer and elk.

During the investigation of the State’s first case of CWD this week, the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets found that one of the herds associated with the index animal had recently sent a sample to the State’s Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory to be tested for CWD. The sample was collected and sent for testing as part of the State’s mandatory CWD surveillance and testing protocols.

The positive sample was from a four to five year old white-tailed deer that died from aspiration pneumonia, which is often but not exclusively associated with CWD. Due to the direct association with the index herd, the Department expedited the testing procedure by re-routing the sample to the National Veterinary Services Laboratory in Ames, Iowa, which late yesterday found the sample to be positive for CWD.

Two days ago, the New York State Departments of Agriculture and Markets, and Environmental Conservation announced the State’s first case of CWD, found in a six-year old white-tailed doe from a captive herd in Oneida County. The deer was sampled as part of the State’s Enhanced CWD Surveillance and Monitoring Program.

Currently, the index herd and the six other associated herds including the second positive herd are under quarantine. All animals remaining in the index herd and the herd with the second confirmed positive herd will be depopulated and tested for CWD. The investigation to determine the source of the infection is ongoing.

The New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets will continue to seek any susceptible deer that came into contact with either herd and to assess the health and environmental risks associated with such establishments.

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation will continue to conduct intensive monitoring of the wild deer population surrounding the two positive herds to determine if CWD has spread to wild deer.

CWD is a transmissible spongiform encephalopathy (TSE) of deer and elk. Scientific and epidemiological research into CWD is ongoing. To date, research shows that the disease is typified by chronic weight loss, is always fatal, and is transmissible between susceptible species. CWD has only been found in members of the deer family in North America, which include white-tailed deer, mule deer, elk and moose.

More information and the transcript of Thursday’s press conference regarding the first positive case of CWD in New York State can be found at the Department of Agriculture and Markets’ website at or at the Department of Environmental Conservation’s website at

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