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Sportsman Outdoors

More stats on CWD

Jack Danchak
Posted 7/29/22

The Pennsylvania Game Commission recently sent out a press release about Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD).  Since July 1, 2021, the Pennsylvania Game Commission has collected more than 11,000 CWD …

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Sportsman Outdoors

More stats on CWD

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The Pennsylvania Game Commission recently sent out a press release about Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD).  Since July 1, 2021, the Pennsylvania Game Commission has collected more than 11,000 CWD samples from deer. Hunters across five disease management areas submitted more than 5,000 of those samples. More than 2,000 samples were collected from processors as part of the Game Commission’s statewide surveillance efforts.

Of the number sampled, CWD was detected in a total of 253 deer. Pennsylvania’s CWD Section Supervisor Andrea Korman said, “CWD surveillance is critical to managing the disease. The Game Commission manages wildlife for, and in partnership with, the public. This partnership is accomplished by the willingness of hunters to harvest and submit deer for testing.”

Determining the extent of CWD infection in high priority areas, such as around a new detection or on the leading edge of disease expansion, is critical to managing the spread of the disease.

One way this is accomplished is through CWD Deer Management Assistance Program units. For 2021-22, there were 10 specific CWD DMAP units across the state.

Hunters could purchase up to two additional antlerless permits to be used within these CWD DMAP areas. Increased surveillance in these CWD DMAP units is essential to understanding if these cases were the first signs of disease in the area or a symptom of established disease. Results from these samples help guide future management efforts.

As with previous years, most of the deer that tested positive for CWD in the 2021-22 hunting season came from Disease Management Area 2 in south central Pennsylvania.

Specifically, they have been concentrated within Area 2 in the established area that covers portions of five counties. This area, where CWD is considered to be established within the deer population, has produced nearly 90 percent of Pennsylvania’s CWD positives since the disease first was detected here in 2012.

Supervisor Korman said, “While disappointing, for the hunter, harvesting a CWD positive deer protects the resource by removing a diseased animal from the landscape and helps us manage CWD.”

Pennsylvania is spending millions of dollars to test deer for CWD and trying to slow down the disease from spreading, they still have no solution how to eliminate it.

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