Informational meeting on CWD set Feb. 12 in Marathon County

WAUSAU, Wis. - The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources and the Marathon County Deer Advisory Committee will host a public meeting Wednesday, Feb. 12, at 7 p.m., to discuss the recent discovery of chronic wasting disease in a wild deer in Marathon County.
The meeting will take place in the Marathon County Parks, Recreation and Forestry Building at 212 River Drive in Wausau. DNR staff will be present to answer questions and share information with attendees.
For more information regarding CWD in Wisconsin, visit the DNR website.

SOURCE: Wisconsin DNR


Learn how to hunt turkeys in Minnesota this spring

Youth and adults can learn to hunt turkeys this April with experienced volunteers who will cover safe hunting techniques, how to call-in turkeys, hunting tactics and field dressing a bird.
Participants can apply through Sunday, March 1. The hunts are Saturday, April 18, and Sunday, April 19, and provide opportunities to access locations that may otherwise be closed to hunting. Participants learn the skills and techniques that allow new turkey hunters to become lifelong hunters.
This is the 18th year that the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources and the National Wild Turkey Federation have cooperated to offer these hunts. Details about how to apply and costs to participate are available on the DNR’s learn to hunt opportunities page.

SOURCE: Minnesota DNR


Help shape deer population goals for northwestern, western Minnesota

Local workshops to set deer population goals continue in late February for northwestern and western areas of the state.
Anyone may attend these workshops.
Background information will be provided at the workshops and attendees are encouraged to RSVP.
Visit the DNR website for details about the deer permit areas addressed at each workshop, the locations and times of these workshops, other ways to participate in the goal-setting process, and how to RSVP.

SOURCE: Minnesota DNR


DNR confirms CWD deer in Marquette County

OSHKOSH, Wis. - The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources confirms that a wild deer tested positive for chronic wasting disease (CWD) in Buffalo Township in Marquette County.
The CWD-positive deer was an adult doe harvested during the 2019 nine-day gun deer season and was tested as part of the DNR's disease surveillance efforts. This is the second wild deer that tested positive for CWD in Marquette County, and its location is also within 10 miles of adjacent Green Lake and Columbia counties. The first detection was during the 2018 deer season.
State law requires the DNR to enact a ban on baiting and feeding of deer in counties or portions of counties within a 10-mile radius of a wild or farm-raised deer that tests positive for CWD or tuberculosis. Marquette, Green Lake and Columbia counties are already identified as CWD affected counties and already have baiting and feeding bans in place. As required by law, this new CWD-positive detection will renew a three-year baiting and feeding ban in Marquette County and a two-year ban in Green Lake County. Columbia County will renew a three-year ban due to wild deer CWD positive detections within the county.
"We are committed to working closely with local communities, including the citizen-based County Deer Advisory Councils as we explore future management options for this disease in Marquette and the surrounding counties," said Ellen Barth, DNR wildlife area supervisor.
In response to the detection of this CWD-positive wild deer, the DNR will:
* Work with local County Deer Advisory Council members from the counties impacted by this detection and scheduled meetings in January to discuss response actions, including the issuance of CWD surveillance permits.
* Determine surveillance activities to assess disease distribution and prevalence will also include:
- Encouraging reporting of sick deer.
- Sampling vehicle-killed adult deer when feasible.
- Sampling adult deer harvested under agricultural damage permits.
- Encourage hunters to utilize deer carcass waste disposal options.
- Encourage hunters to follow recommendations to help prevent the spread of CWD.
Chronic wasting disease is a fatal, infectious nervous system disease of deer, moose, elk and reindeer/caribou. It belongs to the family of diseases known as transmissible spongiform encephalopathies (TSEs) or prion diseases. CWD occurs only in members of the cervid or deer family - both wild and captive. The Wisconsin DNR began monitoring the state's wild white-tailed deer population for CWD in 1999. The first positives were found in 2002.
For more information about baiting and feeding regulations, CWD in Wisconsin and for information on how to have deer tested during the 2019-20 hunting seasons, visit the DNR's baiting and feeding and CWD sampling webpages.

SOURCE: Wisconsin DNR


DNR hosts meeting for Sheboygan County CWD response plan

PLYMOUTH, Wis. - Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources staff and the Sheboygan County Deer Advisory Council will host a public meeting in February regarding the status of chronic wasting disease (CWD) and a response plan for sampling wild deer in the county.
The meeting is Wednesday, Feb. 5, at 6:30 p.m. at the Sheboygan County Highway Department located at W5741 County Road J in Plymouth.
In late 2019, a three-year-old wild doe tested positive for CWD in Plymouth Township. In order to better understand the prevalence and distribution of the disease in Sheboygan County, the DNR will be sampling additional deer in the area. In partnership with County Deer Advisory Council members, DNR staff will discuss recommendations for disease surveillance options in response to the detection of chronic wasting disease in Sheboygan County.
DNR staff will be in attendance to provide information about the results of local CWD testing efforts and discuss future sampling recommendations. A public comment period will allow time during the meeting for citizens who wish to provide comments to the DNR and CDAC.
Chronic wasting disease is a fatal, infectious nervous system disease of deer, moose, elk and reindeer/caribou. It belongs to the family of diseases known as transmissible spongiform encephalopathies (TSEs) or prion diseases. CWD occurs only in members of the cervid or deer family - both wild and captive. The Wisconsin DNR began monitoring the state's wild white-tailed deer population for CWD in 1999. The first positives were found in 2002.

SOURCE: Wisconsin DNR


DNR confirms CWD detected in Marathon County

WAUSAU, Wis. - The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources confirms a wild deer tested positive for chronic wasting disease (CWD) in Marathon County.
The CWD-positive deer was an adult deer harvested in the Reid Township during the 2019 antlerless deer hunting season and was tested as part of the DNR's disease surveillance efforts. This is the first wild deer that tested positive for CWD in Marathon County, and its location is also within 10 miles of adjacent Shawano, Portage and Waupaca counties.
State law requires that the DNR enact a ban on baiting and feeding of deer in counties or portions of counties within a 10-mile radius of a wild or farm-raised deer that tests positive for CWD or tuberculosis. Marathon, Shawano, Portage and Waupaca counties are already identified as CWD-affected counties and already have baiting and feeding bans in place. As required by law, this new CWD-positive detection will renew a three-year baiting and feeding ban in Marathon County and a two-year ban in Waupaca County. A recent CWD positive detection in a wild deer in Portage County will renew a three-year ban for that county. Shawano County had a farm-raised deer CWD-positive detection last fall, which renewed a three-year ban for that county.
"We are committed to working closely with local communities, including the citizen-based County Deer Advisory Councils as we explore future management options for this disease in Marathon and the surrounding counties," said Ryan Haffele, DNR wildlife area supervisor. "We have had a concerted effort to sample in this area since 2014 following the detection of CWD in a captive deer herd."
In response to the detection of this CWD-positive wild deer, the DNR will:
* Coordinate swiftly with County Deer Advisory Council members from the counties impacted by this detection and schedule meetings in February 2020 to discuss response actions, including the issuance of CWD surveillance permits this winter.
* Determine surveillance activities to assess disease distribution and prevalence also to include:
- Encouraging reporting of sick deer.
- Sampling vehicle-killed adult deer when feasible.
- Sampling adult deer harvested under agricultural damage permits.
- Encourage hunters to follow recommendations to help prevent the spread of CWD.
Chronic wasting disease is a fatal, infectious nervous system disease of deer, moose, elk and reindeer/caribou. It belongs to the family of diseases known as transmissible spongiform encephalopathies (TSEs) or prion diseases. CWD occurs only in members of the cervid or deer family - both wild and captive.
The Wisconsin DNR began monitoring the state's wild white-tailed deer population for CWD in 1999. The first positives were found in 2002.
For more information regarding baiting and feeding regulations and CWD in Wisconsin and for information on how to have deer tested during the 2019-20 hunting seasons, visit the DNR's baiting and feeding and CWD sampling webpages respectively.

SOURCE: Wisconsin DNR


CWD remains biggest concern in southeastern Minnesota

During the 2019 hunting season and special hunts, chronic wasting disease was confirmed in 27 wild deer, all from southeastern Minnesota.
CWD was not detected in wild deer in central and north-central Minnesota.
“Overall, this is good news for Minnesota’s wild deer. The disease is still relatively rare across the state, and the CWD-positive test results this year came from areas where we had the most risk,” said Lou Cornicelli, DNR wildlife research manager.
In total, 12,618 hunter-harvested deer were tested in the southeast disease management and control zones, 3,965 in the north-central disease management zone, and 536 in the central surveillance area.
An additional 282 opportunistic samples (deer found dead or reported sick) were tested, with one CWD-positive found within the southeast disease management zone. Researchers are still submitting some samples from cooperating taxidermists. Final results will be updated online at mndnr.gov/cwdcheck as they become available.
Minnesota’s CWD response plan calls for testing of wild deer for three years after the disease is detected in either captive or wild deer because the disease incubates in deer slowly. If CWD is not detected in three consecutive years of testing, the DNR stops looking for the disease in that area.

Southeastern area
In southeastern Minnesota, 23 additional cases of CWD were discovered in the disease management zone during the fall hunting season. Three additional deer were found positive for CWD after testing from the two special hunts in this area. The southeast control zone, a buffer area around the management zone, returned no CWD-positive results.

North-central area
This was the third year of sampling in the north-central area, after the discovery of CWD in a deer farm in Crow Wing County.
More than 8,000 wild deer were tested during falls 2017 and 2018 without any detection of CWD. However, one CWD-positive deer was found dead near the infected farm in January 2019, which sparked more aggressive control strategies.
The management zone, deer permit area 604, will remain in place for at least two more years to see if CWD is found in other wild deer in the area.
“We’ll continue watching the north-central area to see if disease is present beyond the one CWD-positive deer discovered last year,” Cornicelli said.

Central area
Because no wild deer positives were detected in the central surveillance area in its third consecutive year of testing, there will be no more testing in this area during the 2020 hunting season. Precautionary testing in central Minnesota began in 2017 after the discovery of CWD at a deer farm in Meeker County.
Lots of helpTo support hunter compliance with CWD management carcass movement restrictions, the DNR placed dumpsters for deer carcass collection and disposal in 25 locations across the disease management zones, as part of the Adopt-a-Dumpster program. The program kept more than 200 tons of deer remains off of the landscape, reducing the potential for spread of CWD through infected carcasses.
“The support and help from hunters, stakeholders and businesses were critical in making this effort a success,” said Bryan Lueth, DNR habitat program manager, who helped coordinate the program. Backcountry Hunters and Anglers, Bluffland Whitetails Association, Crow Wing County and the Minnesota Deer Hunters Association provided support for the DNR’s Adopt-A-Dumpster program, which was established by the Minnesota Legislature.
Current management actionsIn February, the DNR will work with U.S. Department of Agriculture-Wildlife Services to complete targeted culling in localized areas in the southeast where CWD has been detected in wild deer. Reducing deer densities in these areas reduces the risk of disease spreading. A map of the areas of focus is available on the southeast disease management zone webpage.
Venison from deer harvested that do not test positive for CWD will be donated through the Share the Harvest program. People can find more information about the program on the DNR website.
Final CWD test results will influence how the DNR manages the disease going forward and any changes it will make to 2020 hunting regulations, which will be released in August.

Additional CWD information
CWD is an always-fatal neurological disease that affects the cervid family, which includes deer, elk and moose. Since CWD was first detected in a captive elk in Minnesota in 2002, the DNR has tested more than 90,000 wild deer in the state. To date, 79 wild deer have been confirmed positive for CWD in Minnesota. Test results, including locations of confirmed positive test results and statistics, are available on the DNR website at mndnr.gov/cwdcheck.
Keeping Minnesota’s wild deer population healthy remains the goal in the DNR’s response to chronic wasting disease. The DNR’s three-pronged approach to prevent spread of the disease was detailed in an earlier news release; the department’s CWD response plan can be found on the DNR website.
For more information on chronic wasting disease, visit mndnr.gov/cwd.

SOURCE: Minnesota DNR