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CWD

Fishbonker

Life Member
I went up to the Elkader meeting tonight. To answer a couple of my own questions, yes birds can spread CDW. Crows eat infected carcasses and poop the prions out. Same with coyotes and anything else that feeds off the carcass. That's why it is important to dispose of the carcass properly which would be to take it to the landfill. CWD can be spread by the wind, the prions can attach to soil and can get blown around. There is no way to detect prions in dirt. I couldn't hear the reason why. Prions can "live" in bottled urine. Bottled urine is the prime suspect in the Norway outbreak. If you must use urine attractants look on the label for the ATA logo, this means the herd the urine comes from is tested above the standards for certification as a CWD free herd. The CWD prions are believed to be killed at temps of at least 1600 degrees Fahrenheit which is bright red to almost yellow when compared to hot iron colors. A study gauging how hard it would be for CWD to cross from cervids to humans was flawed, a study done in Europe on tissues from the original American study showed the prion in more tissues.

And that was the good news. The plan in Clayton County is to sample 300 deer in the surveillance area, they would like 2 deer from each section (square mile). The surveillance area pretty much follows the Turkey River. The landowners in that area are asked to participate, if they chose not to the DNR will not force them. Over and over it was emphasized the choice was up to the residents in the area. If they didn't want to participate they didn't have to. The special season will run from 2/18 to 3/3. Tags will be free. The deer will all need to be taken to a check station but I can't remember where. It was also said over and over, participate or not, we (DNR) know for sure what the long term effects will be unless the disease is slowed down now. It is for the future hunters yet to be born that we (DNR) ask you to participate. The decision is up to you. I'm paraphrasing but that is the jist of it.

I had a map of the surveillance zone but scribbled on it so I didn't want to scan it and post it.

One other question I had answered was how did New York do it? They went into the area, did heavy herd reduction before the area could be infected beyond salvage, educated the hunters that went to other states not to bring a carcass back and for local hunters to properly dispose of the carcass after they butchered it. It was also shared, and may be common knowledge for every one but me, that CWD was estimated to be in Wisconsin for 10 years before it was found. That is why they can not control it. Wisconsin and Iowa started testing at the same time (2002).

Please post questions you might have and I'll try to answer them.

Next thing you know the turkeys will get a disease and I'll have nothing left to hunt except for the mice in the garage.
 

Mike311

Active Member
So what you're all saying is that it's getting closer to the point I need to find a new hobby? I have to think it will gradually spread state wide. I hunt exclusively public land in Allamakee and think it will be hard to motivate myself to head up this fall. Only reason being the large number of samples/deer harvested for the study not necessarily because of CWD.
 

Handcannon

Well-Known Member
"yes birds can spread CDW. Crows eat infected carcasses and poop the prions out. Same with coyotes and anything else that feeds off the carcass. That's why it is important to dispose of the carcass properly which would be to take it to the landfill. CWD can be spread by the wind, the prions can attach to soil and can get blown around. There is no way to detect prions in dirt. I couldn't hear the reason why. Prions can "live" in bottled urine. Bottled urine is the prime suspect in the Norway outbreak. If you must use urine attractants look on the label for the ATA logo, this means the herd the urine comes from is tested above the standards for certification as a CWD free herd. The CWD prions are believed to be killed at temps of at least 1600 degrees Fahrenheit which is bright red to almost yellow when compared to hot iron colors. A study gauging how hard it would be for CWD to cross from cervids to humans was flawed, a study done in Europe on tissues from the original American study showed the prion in more tissues."



So what about the gut piles? Crows, eagles, coyotes, fox, skunk, possum & etc all eat the pile. All piles have fecal matter & urine.

Infected soil on your boots, your floor mats, your truck?

Also not fond of the landfill option. My trash goes into a garbage truck, then to a "full" landfill where it all goes in a huge pile & then is loaded into a larger truck & then taken to another landfill...in another state.

This is some scary stuff! Easy to spread & hard to stop!

I think the DNR should test all archery deer to truly find infected deer in their "normal" core areas - not by testing deer that are pushed around, sometimes miles from their home range. It would pinpoint the area better.
 

Fishbonker

Life Member
"yes birds can spread CDW. Crows eat infected carcasses and poop the prions out. Same with coyotes and anything else that feeds off the carcass. That's why it is important to dispose of the carcass properly which would be to take it to the landfill. CWD can be spread by the wind, the prions can attach to soil and can get blown around. There is no way to detect prions in dirt. I couldn't hear the reason why. Prions can "live" in bottled urine. Bottled urine is the prime suspect in the Norway outbreak. If you must use urine attractants look on the label for the ATA logo, this means the herd the urine comes from is tested above the standards for certification as a CWD free herd. The CWD prions are believed to be killed at temps of at least 1600 degrees Fahrenheit which is bright red to almost yellow when compared to hot iron colors. A study gauging how hard it would be for CWD to cross from cervids to humans was flawed, a study done in Europe on tissues from the original American study showed the prion in more tissues."



So what about the gut piles? Crows, eagles, coyotes, fox, skunk, possum & etc all eat the pile. All piles have fecal matter & urine.

Infected soil on your boots, your floor mats, your truck?

Also not fond of the landfill option. My trash goes into a garbage truck, then to a "full" landfill where it all goes in a huge pile & then is loaded into a larger truck & then taken to another landfill...in another state.

This is some scary stuff! Easy to spread & hard to stop!

I think the DNR should test all archery deer to truly find infected deer in their "normal" core areas - not by testing deer that are pushed around, sometimes miles from their home range. It would pinpoint the area better.

Very good observations, I thought the same things. Especially when they reviewed the study about cross species transmission. One of the things the European examination of the tissue slides showed was the prions in the spleens. Granted this was a mouse model but the information is directly transferable to cervids. How many spleens have I left in the field? A lot. More than others but fewer than some. But how many were infected by CWD? I hope none but I'll never know for sure.

So what do we do with the guts? Bag 'em and drag 'em? Don't gut the deer till you have it to a place you can put the guts directly into a garbage bag and landfill them? I know the deer I shoot aren't all that big but they drag a lot easier with the guts out.

We all have some very tough personal choices to make. The DNR would like to sample every deer killed but at 20 bucks/deer they can't afford it. They also said last night that the deer that was positive near Elkader was a shot gun kill but they aren't sure where it actually came from because like you said, deer will run for a very long way when pushed.
 

Oct-Lull

Well-Known Member
Did they talk about infection rate? It's been out west for a long time and hasn't killed all the deer out there. Is every deer prone to getting it or just some? Is it worth all the worry or can the herd survive with it? There will always be high density private farms, food plots, feeder's, mineral.... The not me, not where I am attitude that helps it spread. Not to mention the natural ways already discussed
 

Fishbonker

Life Member
They did talk about infection rates of deer tested. The Wisconsin tests this year were nasty. Wisconsin is testing fewer deer but finding more CWD.

CWD has not killed all the cervids out west but there are examples of shrinking herd size with one isolated herd predicted to extinct in 40 years. I don't know what hunters are actually seeing for numbers of cervids out west but I'm sure states are loath to say their populations are going down.

There have been preliminary studies on some deer that seem to be resistant to CWD, all those deer carry a gene believed to be responsible for the resistance, this was not brought up last knight but has been discussed here before. If I recall form those discussions the resistant deer are few and far between.

As far as mineral licks and supplemental feeding there are no laws against it but they strongly discourage the activity. They didn't elaborate on food plots except to say the prion can be passed through the foliage of corn, soybeans and wheat plants. Think about this, the sun melts the snow off the south slope of a 200 acre corn field where are the deer going to be?

Will the herd survive with it? Some folks say yes some folks say no. I believe it is a pay me now or pay me later scenario. Either we take a hit in our hunting now or there may not be deer for our future generations to hunt. Why have there been so few deer found dead solely from CWD? It is my belief that hunters, predators and Fords take out the weak in the herd before they show overt signs of infection. They are relatively easy prey.

Each of us will need to make our own decisions on CWD.
 

Oct-Lull

Well-Known Member
Thanks for the Info. Very helpful. I personally have given up mineral this past year thinking better safe than sorry. Makes cams tougher in the summer for sure but I'm OK with that. I know food plots may not be a big one with all the other crops out there but micro plots in theory could be. No winter feeding either this year. Maybe nothing will work but we need to do what we can.
 

CurtisWalker

Moderator
Insert politically nuanced fence joke here.

Curtis, have you seen anything that indicates birds are a vector? I have wondered but I haven't seen a reference to birds spreading it but I sure haven't read everything. How did the cervids in Norway get CWD? One of several ways I suppose. Either somebody shipped an infected animal over and it spread that way or an airborne vector of some kind. Perhaps a migrating bird carried it somehow or my biggest fear is the wind blew some prions in their direction. Or even something as weird as a hunter going from Europe to North America and back got elk poop on his shoe from over here, it fell off in Norway and now they too are.

I don't know if birds are vectors. I just had the thought since the Orion can live in soil and such for so long birds could possibly transport it from their bodies or feet had they contacted it.
 

gundog870

Premium Platinum Member
"CWD has not killed all the cervids out west but there are examples of shrinking herd size with one isolated herd predicted to extinct in 40 years. I don't know what hunters are actually seeing for numbers of cervids out west but I'm sure states are loath to say their populations are going down."

I wish I was there to as some questions on the elk herd that they referenced. Because they used that reference before; and it happened to be in a unit that was infested with Wolves and just north of Yellowstone.

Frustrating... with no answers.
 

Fishbonker

Life Member

This study was published last August.

The abstract is interesting but the first paragraph in the discussion section pretty much sums it up:

The difference in survival by CWD-status and the high proportion of CWD-positive deer in this population help explain the declining population trend (λ1 = 0.896). The CWD-positive deer were 4.5 times more likely to die annually than CWD-negative deer. These results support concerns of wildlife managers, wildlife disease experts, and conservationists that this endemic (chronic) disease can negatively impact deer population sustainability at high disease prevalence. The sensitivity analysis and LTRE indicated survival of fawns, yearlings, and 2.5 year-old CWD-negative deer were primarily responsible for the reduction in λ1 caused by CWD. It is likely that CWD and hunter harvest, the main causes of mortality, have produced the young age structure observed in this population. At the current λ1, this population is not sustainable with possible extinction in 48 years at current levels of mortality and fecundity given the worst-case scenario of frequency dependent transmission [39] and no immigration or genetic selection for less susceptible genotypes for CWD [40].

The study area was SE Wyoming on whitetails only. Predators were cougars, black bears, coyotes and golden eagles with very few losses of the study animals to predators. The authors comment that cougars preferred mule deer.

I only read through it quickly and I need to read it again for some clarity on a point or two, or as much clarity as I'll understand. I would suggest reading the study, if a guy can make it through all the scientific stuff the authors make some pretty sobering conclusions.
 

loneranger

Well-Known Member
Glad my huntin days are mostly in the past. Sorry for future generations. Animal Rights fanatics might get their way after all ?
 

CurtisWalker

Moderator
Most of the studies I've read on CWD don't look promising.

Just read a study stating the CWD prion remains infectious even after running through crow and coyote digestive systems
 

Hardwood11

It is going to be a good fall!
Let's hope deer can either become resistant or not as likely to contract...be so sad if it hit Iowa or any state hard, like it has in SW Wisconsin.
 

Tim Hull

PMA Member
The implications for CWD management are enormous. Those who still advocate harvesting large numbers of deer to try to eradicate CWD and/or for CWD testing will undoubtedly take out CWD-resistant deer from the wild, slowing the process of natural selection. In the end, it’s probably best to leave CWD management to Mother Nature. I TOTALLY AGREE. LEAVE IT ALONE.
 

CurtisWalker

Moderator

CurtisWalker

Moderator
This could be biased, it could be right, could be wrong, no idea. I have no motive other than to try and understand.... this is interesting: right or wrong or theory.....
http://www.deeranddeerhunting.com/a...genetically-resistant-chronic-wasting-disease
I was trying to look up studies on resistance. There seems to be some resistance in reindeer, etc. That could be the key.
You only like this for the Seinfield quote..

This is the resistance they are talking about. Each of the species have a species specific polymorphism that either slows the spread of CWD through the body or lowers the risk of contraction.

White-tailed deer also have a polymorphism at Prnp codon 96 (S/G) [36]. In naturally infected white-tailed deer, deer that expressed 96SS PrP had a lower risk for CWD infection, but were not resistant, since at least three of 7350 CWD infected deer were positive for PrPSc in brain [36, 59]. Other studies suggest that the 96S allele delays CWD disease progression [95]. Perhaps these two allelic genotypes select for different CWD strains.
 

CurtisWalker

Moderator
From what I've read the thought is that deer that are homozygous for QSS. May have a resistance for CWD however there hasn't been enough statistical evidence to prove this. QSS is an allele that presents Glutamine at codon 95 , serine at codon 96, and Serine at codon 138. Which is the only allele that didn't test positive for CWD when it was homozygous.
 
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