MISSOURI, USA — The Missouri Department of Conservation reported its monitoring, management and testing efforts for Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) for the 2020-2021 surveillance year on Monday.
The MDC reported it had collected more than 15,300 tissue samples from mostly harvested deer for CWD testing. The Department confirmed 44 new cases of CWD from deer tested.
Chronic Wasting Disease is deadly in white-tailed deer and other members of the deer family. The Department said its testing is in place to find cases as early as possible and limit the spread of the disease.
The MDC said it usually take around 18-24 months for the time a deer is infected with CWD until it looks visibly sick, and deer can spread the disease without appearing to be sick.
Those new 44 bring the total CWD cases in Missouri to 206. The MDC said it has tested more than 152,300 deer since the first cases of CWD were found in free-ranging deer in 2012.
The 44 new cases were found in the following counties: Adair (2), Franklin (5), Linn (6), Macon (5), Oregon (3), Polk (1), Pulaski (1), Putnam (2), St. Clair (1), Ste. Genevieve (12) and Stone (1).
“We tested about 16,000 fewer deer last season compared to the 2019-2020 testing period,” MDC Wildlife Program Supervisor Jasmine Batten said in a release. “The lower number of deer tested this season was mostly due to MDC suspending our mandatory sampling requirements during the opening weekend due to concerns about human health and safety related to the COVDID-19 pandemic. Thankfully, the hard work of taxidermists and meat processors who provided samples and the hunters who voluntarily had their deer sampled at a variety of locations allowed us to still adequately monitor and detect CWD throughout the state.”
For more information on the state's Chronic Wasting Disease efforts, click here.