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Contact(s): Tami Ryan, DNR wildlife health section chief, 608-266-3143,; Sawyer Briel, DNR communications, 608-282-5334
December 15, 2015

MADISON -- The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources Tuesday confirmed test results showing chronic wasting disease in a 3 1/2 year old buck harvested on private land in Crawford County.

Tami Ryan, DNR wildlife health section chief, said the result represents the first positive test for CWD detected in the county. The buck appeared healthy at the time of the kill, which is not unusual with CWD detections as it takes up to 16 to 18 months before infected animals display symptoms.

"Crawford County is already classified as a CWD-affected county, so the finding will not result in any regulatory changes," Ryan said. "We have interviewed the hunter to confirm the location, which is in the town of Clayton, west of Richland Center. The deer was harvested 13 miles from the nearest previous positive test result."

Crawford County and the surrounding counties of Vernon, Richland and Grant are already classified as CWD affected counties and have baiting and feeding bans in place.

DNR appreciates the assistance from hunters in providing samples from their harvest to advance monitoring efforts, Ryan said. CWD monitoring remains a priority for DNR and the department continues to work with cooperating taxidermists and meat processors within targeted surveillance areas. The department also has piloted new self-serve kiosks around the state to make it more convenient for hunters to submit deer heads for testing.

"Hunters have played a key role in expanding our knowledge of CWD in Wisconsin," Ryan said. "Their willingness to deliver samples is absolutely essential to disease monitoring efforts that inform our understanding of CWD distribution and prevalence."

Test results are generally returned within three to four weeks. To learn more about CWD in Wisconsin, search the DNR website, for keyword "CWD." For information about restrictions on moving carcasses from areas affected by chronic wasting disease, search "carcass movement." The website also contains more information about "sampling and registration" and locations where samples can be delivered, by searching "hunting registration stations."

Wisconsin's deer hunt continues through Jan. 31 for archery and crossbow harvest in some metro subunits.
Last Revised: Tuesday, December 15, 2015

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