COLUMBUS — For the eighth straight year, testing of Ohio’s deer herd has found no evidence of chronic wasting disease (CWD), a degenerative brain disease that affects elk, mule deer and white-tailed deer.
According to the Division of Wildlife, state and federal agriculture and wildlife officials collected 571 samples last year from hunter-harvested deer from 44 counties, primarily during the deer-gun season that ran Nov. 30 through Dec. 6.
All CWD testing is performed at the Animal Disease Diagnostic Laboratory of the Ohio Department of Agriculture.
No bovine tuberculosis
In addition to CWD, all 571 samples of the hunter-harvested deer samples were also tested for bovine tuberculosis. Results found no evidence of this disease in Ohio deer.
Additional CWD samples are being taken from road-killed deer, but those test results are not yet available. Sampling continues through April.
Since 2002, the Division of Wildlife, in conjunction with the Ohio Department of Agriculture’s Division of Animal Industry and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, Wildlife and Veterinary Services, has been conducting surveillance throughout the state for CWD and bovine tuberculosis.
While CWD has never been found in Ohio’s deer herd, it had been diagnosed in wild and captive deer, moose or elk in 15 other states and two Canadian provinces.
Since CWD was discovered in the western U.S. in the late 1960s, there has been no evidence that the disease can be transmitted to humans.
The Division of Wildlife continues to carefully monitor the health of Ohio’s wild deer herd throughout the year.
To view individual test results visit the Ohio Department of Agriculture’s Web site at www.agri.ohio.gov.
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