Cumberland Times-News

March 1, 2014

Virginia confirms two more CWD deer


Cumberland Times-News

— RICHMOND, Va. — Two new cases of chronic wasting disease were detected in Frederick County during the 2013 hunting season, according to the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries.

One deer, a 2.5-year-old doe, was killed on Nov. 30, in proximity to the cluster of five CWD-positive deer harvested in Virginia since 2009. Additionally, a 1.5-year-old buck was killed on Nov. 23, approximately 10 miles southeast of the previously reported cluster.

The location of this positive is not surprising, given that many male white-tailed deer disperse miles from their place of birth during their second year.

Due to the proximity of this new positive to the eastern border of the current Containment Area, changes to the CA boundaries are expected for the 2014 hunting season.

Hunters in Frederick and Shenandoah counties provided excellent cooperation during CWD sample collection this past fall, according to agency spokesmen. VDGIF plans to continue collecting CWD samples on the first three Saturdays of regular firearms season during future hunting seasons.

The agency also prohibits the feeding of deer year-round both in and near the CA, prohibits the movement of deer carcasses and parts out of the CA, restricts the disposal of deer wastes from the CA, prohibits the rehabilitation of deer in the CA, and maintains liberal seasons and bag limits on private lands in an attempt to reduce the deer population.

The CA is currently localized to western Frederick and Shenandoah counties, but will likely be expanded for the 2014 hunting season.

As of February, CWD has been detected in 23 states and two Canadian provinces. The disease is a slow, progressive neurological (brain and nervous system) disease found in deer, elk, and moose in North America. The disease ultimately results in death of the animal. Symptoms exhibited by CWD-infected deer include staggering, abnormal posture, lowered head, drooling, confusion and marked weight loss.