Thursday, February 09, 2012

Colorado Farm-Raised Deer Farms and CWD there from 2012 report Singeltary et al

Colorado Farm-Raised Deer Farms and CWD there from 2012 report Singeltary et al

NOW, if you look at the map that shows these game farms in relations to surround CWD infection rate in the wild, you will see the close proximity from one to the other i.e. CWD infected game farms, to CWD infection in the wild.

please see map here, and you will see that this phenomenon is NOT only unique to Colorado, but with most all other game farms in other states.

what is disturbing about Colorado, are the many CWD infected game farms that are still apparently infected.

the yellow dots indicated CWD in captive facilities (depopulated).

the red dots indicate CWD in captive facilities (CURRENT).

TO date, documented in Colorado, there are 10 depopulated CWD infected game farms.

THERE are also 5 additional CWD infected game farms in Colorado that are CURRENTLY infected, documented to date. ...

you can see map here ;

HOWEVER an updated 2012 map here shows ;

January 2012 CWD Colorado game farms CURRENTLY infected MAP here shows there are 6 CWD CURRENTLY infected GAME FARMS in Colorado

HOWEVER, a 2010 CWD government paper on total CWD infected game farms in the USA showed that Colorado has/had 18 CWD infected game farms. wish I new what the infection rate for each one was ???


Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) Surveillance

Background: Since 2001, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has worked to develop and implement a CWD program to prevent and control CWD in farmed/captive cervid herds and to conduct surveillance in free-ranging cervid populations to include deer, elk, and moose. The CWD Program includes a herd certification program that involves surveillance strategies to monitor for CWD in farmed/captive cervid herds, to respond to detections of CWD- positive cervids, and to investigate epidemiologically-linked animals. Interstate movement of cervids is also based on surveillance and herd certification status. There are currently twenty-three (23) NAHLN Laboratories approved for CWD surveillance testing. The National Veterinary Services Laboratories' (NVSL) Pathobiology Laboratory in Ames, Iowa performs confirmatory testing.

The table shows the number of animals submitted for testing by month for CWD from October 2009 - September 2010 (not including NVSL). In Federal fiscal year (FY) 2010 (October 2009 through September 2010), 14,580 farmed/captive cervids were tested for CWD; an additional 5,419 cervids were tested by NVSL. Thus far in Federal FY 2011 (October and November 2010), 4,337 farmed/captive cervids have been tested for CWD; an additional 1,301 cervids were tested by NVSL. *CWD testing data provided by the USDA/APHIS/Veterinary Services (VS), National Veterinary Services Laboratories (NVSL). Chart does not include 5,419 animals tested by NVSL.

how many positive ???

how many total farmed cervids in USA ???


Chronic Wasting Disease

The Federal Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) herd-certification program for farmed cervids operations has been in development since late 2003. A CWD final rule was published in the Federal Register in 2006 but was not implemented in response to several petitions. The CWD rule was amended in 2010 following the publication of proposed changes. The amended rule will set minimum standards for interstate movement and establish the Federal CWD Herd Certification Program (HCP).

The Federal CWD HCP for farmed cervids is intended to be a cooperative State-Federal-industry program. The CWD program goals are to control CWD in farmed cervid herds and to encourage State and Tribal wildlife agencies to conduct CWD surveillance in wild cervids.

The number of farmed cervids tested for CWD has increased steadily since FY 2003 from approximately 12,000 animals tested to nearly 20,000 in FY 2010. From FY 1997 through FY 2010, CWD was identified in 37 farmed elk herds and 13 farmed white-tailed deer herds in 11 States (Table 3.2). Three new farmed cervid herds were found to have animals diagnosed as positive for CWD in 2010.

Table 3.2: Number of farmed cervid herds with animals positive for CWD by State,

FY 1997–FY 2010

State FY 1997–2010 FY 2010 ( FY 1997–2010)

Colorado 18 18

Kansas 1 1

Michigan 1 1

Minnesota 4 4

Missouri 1 1

Montana 1 1

Nebraska 5 5

New York 2 2

Oklahoma 1 1

South Dakota 7 7

Wisconsin 9 9

Total 49 1 50

Of the 50 CWD-positive herds identified as of September 30, 2010, 6 elk herds (all in Colorado) remained under State quarantine. One White-tailed deer herd in Missouri was identified as CWD positive in February 2010 and remained under State quarantine through 2010 pending depopulation.

Since 2002, most States have been participating in CWD surveillance in free-ranging deer, elk, and more recently, moose. By September 30, 2010, 13 States had reported detecting CWD in wild cervids (Colorado, Illinois, Kansas, Nebraska, North Dakota, New Mexico, New York, South Dakota, Utah, Virginia, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming). From the 2002 through the 2010 hunting seasons, an approximate total of 773,400 hunter-harvested and targeted wild cervids were tested with an average of 95,600 samples each season (Figure 3.4). Wildlife surveillance strategies have also evolved over the years from broad active surveillance of hunter-harvested animals to targeted and weighted surveillance of wild cervids considered to be at greater risk of CWD (based on our knowledge and understanding of CWD transmission in those populations).

Figure 3.4: Surveillance testing of hunter-killed and targeted wildlife for CWD

U.S. Wild Cervid CWD Surveillance
(Reported to VS through 03/26/2010)

United States Department of Agriculture

Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service

Miscellaneous Publication No. 1607

Innovative Solutions to
Human–Wildlife Conflicts

National Wildlife Research Center Accomplishments, 2010


Predicting CWD Progression in Elk—In a recent
study, NWRC researchers examined sections of brain
stem, lymph node, and tonsil from approximately 300
free-ranging and 15,000 ranch-raised adult Rocky
Mountain elk (Cervus elaphus nelsoni) for the presence
of the abnormal isoform of the prion protein
(PrPCWD) that has been associated with CWD. A total of
321 (24 free-ranging and 297 ranch-raised) elk were
found to be positive. The researchers then selected
60 of the positive ranch-raised elk and all of the 24
free-ranging elk to be the basis for the development of
a detailed scoring technique of the obex (brain stem
at the level where the fourth ventricle converges into
the central canal of the spinal cord). NWRC scientists
assisted colleagues from Colorado State University
(CSU), DOI’s National Park Service (NPS), USDA’s
Agricultural Research Service (ARS), the U.S.
Geological Survey (USGS), and the Canadian Food
Inspection Agency to develop the technique, called
the “obex score,” to predict in elk which structure or
regions of the brain, spinal cord, and extra neural tissues
contain PrPCWD.

It is expected that PrPCWD spreads throughout the
obex of the brain stem at a rate similar to the movement
of PrPCWD throughout the central nervous system
and extra neural tissues. Results suggest that PrPCWD
and the severity of spongiform degeneration have a
unique and consistent pattern of progression through
a section of brain stem at the level of the obex in
both naturally occurring and experimentally induced
CWD. Therefore, the obex score has potential usefulness
as a basis for evaluating the presence of PrPCWD
in peripheral tissues and brain. Current studies are
evaluating approximately 100 peripheral tissues and
75 neuro-anatomical locations of the brain and spinal
cord in 36 free-ranging and ranch-raised elk with
naturally occurring CWD and known incubation times.
These results will be compared with corresponding
obex scores.

Concurrent work with live animals is relating the level
of CWD infection with changes in behavior. Cumulative
results could lead to strategies for detecting infected
animals before they show clinical signs, which
could be useful in the treatment of infected individuals
and management of CWD.

*** Spraker suggested an interesting explanation for the occurrence of CWD. The deer pens at the Foot Hills Campus were built some 30-40 years ago by a Dr. Bob Davis. At or abut that time, allegedly, some scrapie work was conducted at this site. When deer were introduced to the pens they occupied ground that had previously been occupied by sheep.


Originally published in the Jan./Feb. 2000 issue of “Bugle” magazine.

Many wildlife managers and conserva-tionists believe that all of that traffic has
the potential to infect wild big game across the West. They point out that many of the
game farms, especially in Montana and Colorado, occupy lands that were once used by
wild herds, and where wild herds still drift along just outside the fences.

“The area where we have chronic wasting disease in the wild is very insignificant
as far as mule deer and elk populations go,” said Mike Miller, a wildlife veterinarian for
the Colorado Department of Wildlife, who, along with Beth Williams, is one of the
pioneers and current leaders of research on the disease. “And it has probably been slow to
spread for that reason. If it were brought into western Colorado, where our big game
herds are larger and more concentrated, it would be disastrous.”

Miller describes chronic wasting disease in the wild as “a management nightmare:
hell if you do, hell if you don’t. This is not like the bison/brucellosis problem in Montana,
where you have vaccines and tests to help you. About the only real management tool we
have for this disease is to go and depopulate the areas where it is found, which basically
means clobbering the native wildlife.”

He notes that chronic wasting disease has been found to be “explosive” in
whitetails, sometimes killing them in days rather than the weeks it takes to kill mule deer
and elk.

“It is a management mess in northeast Colorado,” Miller says, “and we don’t want
to see it spread to other states.”

The Colorado Division of Wildlife has asked for a moratorium on new game
farms in the area where the disease is known to exist in wild herds, but the Department of
Livestock—which in a controversial ruling was recently awarded sole control over the
game farming industry—continues to license them there.

“Certainly, the game farm industry has presented some real threats to wildlife
management in our state,” says Miller, “but in northern Colorado, at least, it could be said
that the infected native wildlife threatens the game farm industry more than vice versa.
I’m not sure what we’re supposed to do about that.”


Playing with Fire:

CWD Found on Colorado Elk Ranches

by Hal Herring

Originally published in the Jan./Feb. 2002 issue of “Bugle” magazine. All material copyright Hal Herring. Reprinted with permission of the author and the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation

A new outbreak of chronic wasting disease on Colorado elk

farms is considered the “worst ever” in the U.S. What does it mean for wild elk and deer? Chronic wasting disease, (CWD) has again been found on commercial elk farms, this time in Colorado. Seven different game farms around the state are currently under quarantine, and exposed animals have been shipped to trophy shooting operations and game farms in 15 additional states. Spurred by the new outbreak, which is now considered the worst ever in the United States, the U.S. Department of Agriculture has declared CWD an emergency, freeing $2.6 million in federal funds to compensate elk farmers whose animals will be killed in an attempt to halt this latest emergence of the disease. Whatever money is left over will go for more sophisticated surveillance and tracking techniques to further monitor the problem. As of mid-October, 1,131 domestic elk and a small herd of domestic whitetails were scheduled to be killed. A special “air curtain“ incinerator—which will supposedly raise temperatures high enough to neutralize the infectious CWD agent—has been purchased to dispose of the carcasses.

Colorado has an efficient system for tracking the movement of domestic elk, and it worked as well as it possibly could. Almost all of the infected elk were quickly traced back to the Elk Echo Ranch, a facility located out on the tablelands 70 miles east of Fort Collins. However, by the time the five infected elk were discovered, the Elk Echo had shipped more than 400 head of elk to facilities all over the U.S. According to a story in the Denver Post, Elk Echo owner Craig McConnell had failed to report deaths of elk on the ranch, as required by Colorado regulations, and had dumped at least two elk (which state veterinary officials suspect may have died of CWD) in a gully on the ranch. Officials also say they wish they knew more about 12 animals that McConnell claimed were killed by lightning strikes between 1995 and 1998, according to the same story. One of the buyers of the Elk Echo animals was Mark Mitchell, at the Trophy Mountain Ranch, a fenced trophy shooting facility located in the middle of wild big game habitat near the Routt National Forest in northwest Colorado. Mitchell purchased 20 “shooter bulls“—domestic elk sold as trophies—from the Elk Echo. Colorado requires that all domestic elk be tested for CWD before the meat is released for human consumption, and one of the shooter bulls killed by a client at the ranch tested positive for the disease. The Trophy Mountain herd was placed under quarantine and, according to a report in the Denver Post, another of the shooter bulls has since proved to be infected.

Mark Mitchell says he believes that the situation is still controllable. “If we didn't have all of our programs in place, this would be a big risk,“ he said, “but the system is working exactly like it is supposed to.“ Like many, if not most, Colorado elk farmers, Mitchell is distrustful of the Colorado Division of Wildlife. “They are playing a twobladed sword,“ he said, “because we move animals, they preach against us.“

According a follow-up story in the Denver Post, officials from the Division of Wildlife have so far killed more than 50 wild mule deer that were believed to have come into contact with the diseased elk at the Trophy Mountain Ranch.

Other Colorado farms that purchased elk from the Elk Echo and are now under quarantine are the All American Antler Ranch, Country Care and the Rancho Anta Grande, which is located in Del Norte. Before the outbreak came to light, the Rancho Anta Grande shipped animals to farms in Colorado’s San Luis Valley and to several other states, including New Mexico and Idaho. State agriculture officials in those states plan to kill and dispose of the animals that can be traced back to the Elk Echo, and the domestic herds that have come into contact with them, as soon as possible according to a report in the Rocky Mountain News.

Another case of CWD appeared on the TNT Elk Ranch near Longmont. Colorado State Veterinarian Dr. Wayne Cunningham said that a wild bull elk that was often seen near the fences of the ranch had been found dead, and tested positive for CWD. “There is definitely CWD in that area,“ said Cunningham. “You might say that in that area, the disease could move in from the wild.“ Colorado officials, such as Jim Rubingh, of the Department of Agriculture, say that there probably should be a moratorium on elk farms within the area where CWD exists in the wild. “I think that will have to happen,“ Rubingh said. “It is just very hard, right now, to imagine a return to business as usual.“ Colorado wildlife officials have said for the past decade that there should be no elk farms established in that area, simply because of the potential for spreading a disease that, in the wild, exists in about 15,000 square miles of Colorado, Wyoming and Nebraska, and, on its own, has spread very slowly, or not at all.

“The endemic area has not changed for the past seven years,“ said Mike Miller, a leading expert on CWD and the head veterinarian for the Division of Wildlife. “It probably is spreading slowly, and we’re trying, with some late hunts and herd reductions, to address that. But where the distribution of the disease has really changed is within the elk industry. Right now, the only infected animals we know of on the elk farms can be traced back to other farms. The Elk Echo is in a place where there are no free-ranging elk. We’ve never confirmed a case of CWD in the wild around there.“

Wildlife officials have expressed many concerns about the rise of the elk industry in Colorado, a state with the largest wild elk population in the United States (more than 200,000 animals), and where wildlife is estimated to contribute $3 billion to the economy. However, their powers are extremely limited, at best. Under pressure from the elk industry, the Colorado legislature stripped all regulatory authority over elk farms from the Division of Wildlife, and placed it in the hands of the Department of Agriculture, which has followed a consistent policy of encouraging the development and expansion of the industry. The Idaho legislature recently took this path as well. Miller says that they are working very hard to protect free-ranging wild game from infection by domestic herds. “This situation was inevitable,“ he said, “and the good news is that we caught it early and may be able to contain it before it gets started in wildlife, especially over there on the West Slope. There’s no indication that it has spilled out of any of the infected farms. We’re stretched pretty thin right now, but we’re determined to keep it that way.“

Wildlife officials in Colorado and elsewhere are particularly troubled by the current situation in Saskatchewan. Despite destroying 6,300 domestic elk to control CWD, two wild mule deer were recently confirmed infected with the disease. They were found near the fences of a heavily infected elk farm, in an area where the disease has never been seen before.

Many conservationists worry that this new outbreak on elk farms could derail the many attempts by organizations like the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation to reintroduce wild elk to their native ranges around the United States, Canada and Mexico. But the reality of the CWD problem is that it exists in one contiguous area of the wild—and among domestic elk—and it has never been found among the wild herds that are the source for the reintroduction efforts.

“I hope our members can recognize that the CWD situation is not some kind of fire drill in the wild,“ said Alan Christensen, manager of the Elk Foundation’s conservation programs. “We’ve known about the disease for over three decades, we’ve tested and monitored our source herds, which are all wild, free-ranging animals, and we’ve never found it.“

Christensen said that it is time to make a clear distinction. “This is a problem on game farms, there’s no doubt about that. Because the animals are crowded together, in unnatural conditions, for commercial purposes. If there were no game farms, would there be a CWD problem? No. Would the disease be in the news? No. Would there be a USDA emergency? Certainly not. Has it been spreading on its own? Not really.“

Researchers have known for almost as long as they have recognized CWD that there are many constraints to the disease in the wild. Because it is a disease of the brain it causes dementia and a severe loss of coordination. “Let’s face it,“ said Dr. Tom Cline, a veterinarian with the South Dakota Animal Husbandry Board, and a veteran of many battles with CWD on game farms in that state, “if a mule deer is staggering around in the wild, a predator will take it down, probably before it has a chance to pass the disease on.“ Long winters and the simple everyday rigors of life in the wild also limit the potential spread of the disease, say researchers.

The newest outbreak of CWD has cast a vivid light on the elk industry in Colorado, which is second to Minnesota as the largest producer in the United States of elk products—shooter bulls, trophies, elk velvet antler and a fledgling meat market. This could well herald an end to the honeymoon between the Colorado Department of Agriculture and the industry. For wildlife advocates, that is good news. Mike Miller said in a 1999 interview, “I cannot think of a single permit for an elk ranch that has ever been denied because of wildlife concerns.“

Miller’s colleague in Wyoming, Beth Williams, one of the leading CWD researchers in the world, said recently, “The Colorado Division of Wildlife has done a great job as far as they’ve been allowed to do it. It’s unfortunate that they’ve had so little power. If you look back at what they tried to do to manage the elk industry you could have avoided a lot of this, but they weren’t allowed to put any of that into place.“

Williams said that placing sole control of the industry under the Colorado Department of Agriculture was a simple failure of common sense. “Wildlife agencies have got to have a hand in dealing with an industry which can have such an obvious effect on free-ranging wildlife,“ she said.

John Mumma, who ran the Colorado Divison of Wildlife from 1996 through 2000, recently said that the time has long since come to ban elk farming in Colorado. “There’s no other way,“ Mumma said. “The legislature has treated the wildlife resources of our state miserably, and they are completely out of touch with the citizens on that. It’s time for the people to rise up and get something going like they did in Montana. If it takes a total buyout, then so be it. Let’s just get it done before we lose something that can never be replaced. I’m tired of this shell-game, this constant playing with fire for someone else’s financial interest.“

Hal Herring is a frequent contributor to Bugle, and last wrote about chronic wasting disease in our January-February 2000 issue.

What is chronic wasting disease?

Chronic wasting disease (CWD) is a member of the family of degenerative brain diseases that includes mad-cow disease, or BSE, which devastated the British beef industry in the early 1990s and continues to cause problems throughout most of Europe. The family also includes a human form of the disease, Creutzfeldt-Jacob Disease (CJD) that causes dementia and rapid death in human beings. Together, the diseases are known as transmissable spongiform encephalopathies, or TSEs, named for the distinctive sponge-like pattern produced by a breakdown in the protein tissues of the brain. They are invariably fatal.

The “transmissable” part of the name is the subject of vast amounts of research, speculation and worry on the part of many people from scientists to hunters. No one really knows how TSEs are transmitted. In Europe, about 100 people have died from a new form of CJD, almost certainly contracted from eating beef products from cattle infected with BSE.

Chronic wasting disease has apparently never affected human beings, though scientists say there is no way to determine that it cannot. Everyone hopes that CWD will turn out to be like scrapie, a TSE disease that has affected domestic sheep for centuries and has never, as far as we know, killed a human being. It may encourage hunters to know that two of the leading authorities on CWD, Beth Williams and her husband Tom Thorne, have hunted for years in the area where CWD is known to occur in the wild and continue to do so. Whenever TSE diseases have caused the rates of Creutzfeldt-Jacob Disease in people to rise, or have reached epidemic levels in animals, the events, as far as anyone can tell, have been triggered by humans themselves. The “mad cow” epidemic in Europe was almost certainly caused by rendering sheep and cattle parts into cattle feed, a way to get a lot of cheap protein into cattle and fatten them up for market. The current problem with CWD in game farm elk is almost certainly a result of infected animals living in close contact, and not being subject to winter-kill or predators.

The Elk Foundation’s View

In 1991, the Elk Foundation developed a position statement on elk ranching that reads, in part:

The Elk Foundation believes that raising captive elk, red deer and other cervids on private game farms in states with wild, free-ranging elk populations poses serious risks to the health and viability of those wild elk herds due to the potential of disease transmission and genetic pollution from hybridization with escaped exotic game farm animals. The Elk Foundation supports the continued involvement of state wildlife agencies in the regulation of the game farming industry in matters related to the protection of the health and welfare of wild, free-ranging elk populations. Through articles in Bugle and sponsorship of symposiums, the Elk Foundation has helped inform people about the dangers of elk farming, and has also contributed to efforts to improve methods to test, detect and better control the spread of diseases.

Saskatchewan’s CWD outbreak

The International Fund for Animal Welfare estimates Canada's efforts over the past year to contain chronic wasting disease in Saskatchewan have cost taxpayers about $60 million, as the federal government rings up bills slaughtering 7,000 domestic elk and livestock, compensating breeders and testing dead animals for CWD. Based on an estimated average pay-out of just over $2,500 per head for slaughtered elk or cattle, the Fund calculated compensation costs at over $20 million alone. In addition, the group estimates another $20 million has been spent on the actual slaughtering, transport of carcasses and other work, and possibly $25 million more has gone to laboratory testing of thousands of elk and other animals.

In 2002, CWD spread over the Continental Divide in
Colorado, and has been identified in four mule deer
inside an elk game farm and six mule deer outside the
game farm. The game farm had no known animals
introduced from the endemic area.


Wednesday, January 04, 2012


see also ;

Friday, February 03, 2012

Wisconsin Farm-Raised Deer Farms and CWD there from 2012 report Singeltary et al

Saturday, February 04, 2012

Wisconsin 16 age limit on testing dead deer Game Farm CWD Testing Protocol Needs To Be Revised



Form 1100-001

(R 2/11)


SUBJECT: Inf01mation Item: Almond Deer Fatm Update



TO BE PRESENTED BY I TITLE: Tami Ryan, Wildlife Health Section Chief



Item No.

In April 20 II, the Natural Resources Board approved the Department purchase of a former deer farm known as Buckhorn Flats in Portage County. Following acquisition the property officially became a Bureau of Wildlife Management program property. Staff in the Bureau's Wildlife Health Section, the West Central District, and Northeast District have taken steps towards public outreach with the local community, developed a property managment plan and biosecurity protocols, are working towards the installation of a secondary fence, and are awaiting research proposals that will advance the scientific understanding of Chronic Wasing Disease.



DATE: November 21, 20 ll FILE REF: 2300

TO: Natural Resources Board

FROM: Cathy Stepp

SUBJECT: Almond Deer Farm Update

The first case of Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) among Wisconsin's farm-raised deer occurred in a white-tailed deer buck shot by a hunter at the property (formerly known as Buckhorn Flats) in September 2002. This situation prompted the eventual depopulation of the entire farm. The deer, a mix of does and yearlings, were destroyed on January 17, 2006- 4 years later- by U.S. Department of Agriculture shooters under a USDA agreement with the farm owner. Sixty of the 76 animals tested positive for CWO. The 76 deer constituted the breeding herd in the breeding facility on the farm. The prope1ty also had a hunting preserve until2005. Four deer, two does and two fawns, the only deer remaining in the former preserve, were killed and tested as well. CWO was not detected in those animals. The total number of deer to test positive from this farm from the initial discovery to final depopulation is 82. The nearly 80% prevalence rate discovered on Buckhorn Flats is the highest prevalence recorded in any captive cervid operation in North America.

The DNR acquired the property on April 13, 20 ll. After extensive consideration and pursuit of several options, it was decided that purchasing the property and subsequent management of the property is the only realistic option to keep the fences intact. Wisconsin's wild white-tailed deer herd is one of the state's most valuable natural resources, and those deer are a valuable resource of recreational, economic, and ecological significance to all citizens of the state. CWO is a serious long-term threat to Wisconsin's deer herd and the future of Wisconsin's hunting traditions. Over 1,200 free-ranging deer have been tested since 2002 in Portage County with no detections of CWD. We have ve~y high levels of confidence that CWO does not occur in the free-ranging herd in this area. This is of pmticular significance considering this farm is located 60 miles nmih of any known occurrence of CWO in wild deer.

The Hall farm is the most concerning of the depopulated game farms in Wisconsin because of its potential high level of soil contamination. Similar concerns exist to some degree for all nine positive farms and any future farms in which CWD positive cervids are found. However, Buckhorn Flats is a unique situation due to the nearly 80% prevalence rate that occurred there, which is the highest infection rate in a captive cervid farm in North America and perhaps the world. The property has undergone cleaning and disinfection per USDA guidelines. Under the established premise plan, no species of cervids could be brought onto the property for five years, and fences were to be maintained to keep free-ranging deer from entering the property. The premise plan expired on May 24, 20 ll. Despite this five year premise plan and site decontamination, the department had serious concerns over the bioavailability of infectious prions at this site to free-ranging white-tailed deer should the fences be removed or otherwise compromised.

Based on current scientific knowledge, CWD prions are known to persist in the environment for at least 3 years and potentially much longer. Evidence of environmental transmission was documented in a Colorado research facility where mule deer became infected with CWD. Furthermore, the likely transmission of CWD via soil is corroborated by recent studies that show that prions bind to soil components with high affinity and are not easily removed by water. These findings suggest that soil may contribute more significantly to TSE transmission than previously recognized.

Department Actions to Date

The DNR has taken steps to inform the public regarding the background of the Almond Farm as well as future plans for the property. A secondary fence, research, and occupancy of the house are all topics of interest. A description of each topic is identified below:

A. A Property Management Plan was developed to provide a background and future plans for the property. Chapters within the plan include a description of the property, research opportunities, facilities, public communications, and biosecurity protocols (see attachment).

B. The DNR held a public meeting the evening of July 28th at the Almond-Bancroft School to discuss the recent acquisition of the deer farm formerly known as Buckhorn Flats. Twenty-nine people signed in and stayed for the 2-hour duration including local deer farmers, conservation congress delegates, etc. Following 45 minutes of presentation, the meeting focused on the question and answer period. The DNR also asked for public input regarding how they could help in varying capacities at the Almond Farm (see attachment).

C. The DNR will begin timber removal from outside the fence this winter. Timber removal from inside the fence has begun with hazardous trees removed. The construction of a second fence 10 – 12 feet outside the present fence will begin in the spring. This will add an additional level of security for keeping wild deer from entering the farm and maintain the integrity of the perimeter (see attachment).

D. The DNR plans to use the Almond Farm as a CWD research facility. Because the question of how long a contaminated site is a risk to deer is of national and international interest, there may be opportunities for research and funding at this facility. One way to potentially assess whether there is a risk to deer from the Almond Farm is to conduct bioassays focusing on prions persisting in soil and what role environmental contamination plays in disease transmission. A proposal is pending from the University of Wisconsin – Stevens Point that concerns prion degradation via composting. The group is seeking additional funding from the University of Wisconsin – Madison and representatives in Canada. USGS is also contemplating a proposal contingent on funding from their pending federal budget. Any proposed research that includes bringing captive cervids onto the property will be thoroughly reviewed by the CWD Research Committee consisting of the Wildlife Health Team, the Wildlife Policy Team, and Department administration as well as external CWD experts prior to permission being granted to ensure that the health of the wild deer herd will not be endangered. The double fencing described above will be critical to minimize the risk of ingress of free-ranging and egress of any experimental captive cervids. E. The house is rented and currently occupied by a Northeast district wildlife employee. The Lessee agrees to perform weekly fence inspections to insure that the fence integrity has not been compromised. The Lessee also pays for all utilities, and will provide lawn care, snow removal, gutter cleaning, and other miscellaneous maintenance as needed. In exchange for these services the monthly rental fee has been waived. It is agreed that the Lessor and the Lessee shall review said waiver of the monthly rental charge at the end of every twelve months that this lease is in effect (see attachment).


Almond Farm Property Management Plan

Questions/Comments from Almond Farm Public Meeting (07-28-2011)

DNR News Release – Almond Farm Public Meeting Announcement (07/18/2011)

External Fence Aerial Photo

Occupancy Agreement

Natural Resources Board Agenda Item – Land Acquisition of the Almond Farm

(March 2011)







The first case of CWD among Wisconsin’s farm-raised deer occurred in a white-tailed deer buck shot by a hunter at Buckhorn Flats in September 2002. This situation prompted the eventual depopulation of the entire farm. The deer, a mix of does and yearlings, were destroyed on January 17, 2006 by U.S. Department of Agriculture shooters under a USDA agreement with the farm owner, Stan Hall. Tissue samples were sent to the Wisconsin Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory for initial screening tests and to the USDA National Veterinary Services Laboratories in Ames, Iowa, for confirmation.

These laboratory results show that 60 of the 76 animals tested positive for chronic wasting disease. The 76 deer constituted the breeding herd on Hall’s farm. He also operated a hunting preserve on the property until 2005. Four deer, two does and two fawns, the only deer remaining in the former preserve, were killed and tested as well. CWD was not detected in those animals. The total number of deer to test positive from this farm from the initial discovery to final depopulation is 82. The CWD infection rate was nearly 80%, the highest ever in a North American captive herd.

The property has undergone cleaning and disinfection as per USDA guidelines. Under an established premise plan, no species of cervids could be brought onto the property for five years, and fences must be maintained to keep wild deer from entering the property so long as the property remained under current ownership. The premise plan expired on May 24, 2011.

Despite the five year premise plan and site decontamination, The WI DNR has concerns over the bioavailability of infectious prions at this site to wild white-tail deer should these fences be removed. Current research indicates that prions can persist in soil for a minimum of 3 years. However, Georgsson et al. (2006) concluded that prions that produced scrapie disease in sheep remained bioavailable and infectious for at least 16 years in natural Icelandic environments, most likely in contaminated soil. Additionally, the authors reported that from 1978-2004, scrapie recurred on 33 sheep farms, of which 9 recurrences occurred 14-21 years after initial culling and subsequent restocking efforts; these findings further emphasize the effect of environmental contamination on sustaining TSE infectivity and that long-term persistence of prions in soils may be substantially greater than previously thought. Evidence of environmental transmission also was documented in a Colorado research facility where mule deer became infected with CWD in two of three paddocks where infected deer carcasses had decomposed on site 1.8 years earlier, and in one of three paddocks where infected deer had last resided 2.2 years earlier (Miller et al. 2004).

Environmental contamination has been identified as a possible cause of recurrence of CWD-infection on elk farms in Canada, when elk were reintroduced one year after depopulation, clean up and disinfection. To date, 8 CWD infected farms remain under CFIA (government of Canada) quarantine indefinitely and will not be allowed to repopulate with cervids until there is additional research on detection of prions in soils and better understanding of the duration of persistence of disease-causing prion post depopulation of CWD-infected cervid farms (Douglas, CFIA, pers. comm.).

Furthermore, the likely transmission of CWD via soil is corroborated by recent studies showing long-term persistence of prions in soil, that prion binds to soil components with high affinity and is not easily removed by water, and that oral prion disease transmission may be enhanced when bound to soil (Johnson et al. 2006, Schramm et al. 2006, Johnson et al. 2007). These findings suggest that soil may harbor more TSE infectivity and contribute more significantly to TSE transmission than previously recognized. These studies highlight the concerns about the risk of transmission via environmental contamination beyond five years and that efforts should be made to prevent freeranging deer from coming into contact with these contaminated facilities.




Maintain the Perimeter Deer Fence

The primary reason for DNR purchase of the property is to ensure that the deer fence remains intact, preventing wild deer from accessing the prion infected property. The DNR has an ethical and financial responsibility to maintain the fences until the science offers a solution for assessing the risk of remediating the site. The fence will be inspected frequently and repaired as needed.

It is desired to construct a second deer proof fence outside of the existing fence as further insurance for the property. The land immediately outside of the current fence will be cleared of all trees and brush to prepare of installation of the fence and allow vehicle access between the fences. It is hoped that land clearing will be completed in the fall of 2011 with the new fence being constructed as soon as conditions permit in 2012, however, the timing is contingent on funding.

Research Opportunities

The DNR plans to use the Almond Farm as a CWD research facility. Because the question of how long a contaminated site is a risk to deer is of national and international interest, there may be opportunities for research and funding at this facility. One way to potentially assess whether there is a risk to deer from the Almond Farm is to conduct bioassays, either on site or at an alternate location, to monitor for disease transmission. Any proposed research that includes bringing captive cervids onto the property will be thoroughly reviewed by the CWD Research Committee consisting of the Wildlife Health Team, the Wildlife Policy Team, and Department administration as well as external CWD experts prior to permission being granted to ensure that the health of the wild deer herd will not be endangered. The double fencing described above will be critical to minimize the risk of ingress of free-ranging and egress of any experimental captive cervids.





The “Almond Farm” owned by the Wisconsin DNR is a CWD prion contaminated facility, and specific guidelines for apparel and equipment sanitization must be followed to prevent prion contamination outside of the contaminated facility. Sanitization guidelines for equipment and surfaces are based upon recommendations from the American Association of Veterinary Laboratory Diagnosticians: Laboratory Safety and Waste disposal Committee and Pathology Committee 2004 publication, “Best Management Practices for Handling Suspect Biosafety Level 2 Animal Transmissible Spongiform Encephalopathy (TSE) Diagnostic Samples. (Scrapie, Chronic Wasting Disease and Transmissible Mink Encephalopathy) In Animal Health Laboratories” These guidelines are as follows:

General Apparel Guidelines

Facilities should have dedicated PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) that stays on site, and should not be removed under any circumstance. Examples of this are as follows: Boots/overshoes, gloves, eye and ear protection, coveralls, etc.

Anyone entering either facility that chooses to not wear dedicated reusable PPE shall be required to utilize disposable PPE that must be disposed of after each daily use. Examples of acceptable disposable PPE are: Tyvek coveralls, disposable gloves, plastic boot covers, etc.

Any personal footwear not left on site must be sanitized utilizing a 50/50 bleach/water solution*.

Personnel Entry/Exit

Upon entry into contaminated areas, personal footwear should be either removed and replaced by dedicated facility boots, or must be covered with plastic boot covers.

Personal clothing should be covered by putting on disposable Tyvek coveralls to prevent clothing contamination.

If contaminated material will be handled, hands should be covered with latex/nitrile gloves.

Prior to exiting contaminated areas of the facility, all persons must walk through a 50/50* bleach/water solution if boots are worn, or boot covers must be removed and disposed of.

All contaminated disposable apparel must be removed prior to exiting the facility.

Trash receptacles for disposable clothing, gloves, and boot covers should be lined and emptied daily, with liners being tightly sealed and placed directly into closed dumpsters designated for waste disposal in a sanitary landfill.

Equipment Sanitization

All tools, instruments, surfaces, and equipment that have been used in potentially contaminated areas of the facility should be sanitized using a 50/50 bleach/water solution*.

Tools or instruments that come into contact with blood, other bodily fluids, or tissues from potentially positive animals should be soaked in a 50/50 bleach/water solution for 60 minutes to be fully disinfected.

All equipment used on site must be sanitized prior to being transferred to alternate locations (preferably, equipment used on site will be kept on-site).

Equipment that is intended to be moved from the property can only enter on frozen snow covered ground.

Equipment that may be moved between facilities (skid steer, ATV’s, etc.) must be pressure-washed on site prior to movement.

* 50/50 (1:1) Bleach/water solution is a chemically approved and proven method of sanitizing surfaces, sampling/necropsy instruments, and footwear. By using a 50/50 solution, the concentration of chlorine is @20,000 ppm, which is required to neutralize prions to an acceptable level of biosafety. For more information on recommended sanitization procedures, refer to: BEST MANAGEMENT PRACTICES FOR HANDLING SUSPECT BIOSAFETY LEVEL 2 ANIMAL TRANSMISSIBLE SPONGIFORM ENCEPHALOPATHY (TSE) DIAGNOSTIC SAMPLES (SCRAPIE, CHRONIC WASTING DISEAS E AND TRANSMISSIBLE MINK ENCEPHALOPATHY) IN ANIMAL HEALTH LABORATORIES: AAVLD BMP CWD scrapie FINAL 18 Feb 2004.pdf







Tuesday, December 20, 2011


look folks, I am NOT trying to pit hunter against hunter here. but for Pete’s sake, this is not rocket science. if you cannot see for the forest for the trees with this next CWD INFECTED GAME FARM, and the OUTSIDE CWD INFECTION RATE THERE FROM, then there is no hope. it’s up to each and every hunter to be good stewards of the woods and hunt, and to the many different species at risk there from with CWD. I will again quote someone else that made a thought inducing statement, a brilliant statement in my mind ;

“Ironic that one can operate a game farm to pose such a threat to wildlife and not only avoid responsibility for mitigating the danger (maintaining fences) but also get the state to buy your failed business.”




In the white-tailed deer game farm where a Nebraska outbreak occurred, CWD prevalence was over 50% in the ranch and almost 7% outside the ranch fenceline within a five-mile radius.


Summary of Chronic Wasting Disease Workshop in Edmonton on Feb. 9-10, 2011

and Alberta’s CWD Update as of March 23, 2011

By Blair Rippin and Dr. Margo Pybus


Jurisdictional Summaries

! Dr. Michael Miller, Colorado Division of Wildlife

- CWD known in Colorado in captive cervids since 1967 and in wild cervids since early
1980s but intensive study done only since 2001.

- no evidence of occurrence in other domestic ruminants nor other wild mammals.

- prevalence high in many local mule deer populations.

- patterns of infections influenced by time since introduction, herd demographics, movement
and congregation patterns, land use, soil characteristics, and management strategies.

- attempts to control or contain CWD deemed ineffective and abandoned, partly because of
lack of public support.

- surveillance through directing hunt pressure and testing hunter kills continues.

Dr. Michael Samuel, Department of Forest and Wildlife Ecology, University of

- CWD identified in Wisconsin wild cervids in 2002 (white-tailed deer) but it’s estimated that
it may have been there for 2 or 3 decades.

- early eradication attempts deemed ineffective and abandoned 3 years ago

- present management aimed only at containment through directing hunt pressure, testing and

- spread estimated to be 2 -3 miles per year.

- genetic research indicates some evidence of developing resistence but it is a very slow to
occur and estimated to take in the order of 200 years to make a difference.

Dr. Trent Bollinger, University of Saskatchewan

- CWD brought in from the US in late 1980s via imported game farm animals and now found
in three populations of wild cervids.

- over the past decade CWD became wide spread in the province and occurs in both deer
species and wild elk.

- containment efforts by directing hunt pressure have been unsuccessful and there is fear that
caribou may become infected.

- management currently focused on tracking movements of the disease.

- considerable concern that if CWD crosses the species barrier (i.e. to domestic stock and/or
humans) there will be far reaching negative economic and social consequences.

- largely depending on research to result in effective management programs.

Dr. Greg Douglas, Chief Veterinary Officer, Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture

- game farms and hunt farms involving 54,000 cervids is currently worth $60 million annually
to Saskatchewans economy.

- described the challenges in efforts (mainly involving surveillance and culling) to eradicate
CWD from Saskatchewan game farms via mechanisms to improve traceability, inventory,
and surveillance.

Dr. Stephane McLachlan and Misty Potts-Sanderson, University of Manitoba

- CWD not present in Manitoba to date but is approaching from eastern Saskatchewan

- First Nations very concerned about “corralling” or “penning” (game farming) wild animals.

- considerable concern expressed about the decline in environmental quality from industrial
sources and its effect on wildlife, indicating that CWD may be a symptom of a much larger

- considerable concern expressed about the lack of effective communication between
scientific community and First Nations.

Impacts of CWD presence on society

Dr. Vic Adamowicz, Department of Rural Economy, University of Alberta

- presented results of questionnaires designed to investigate how CWD affects recreational

- further work will determine the effects of CWD presence on the province’s economy.

- found awareness of CWD varied among societal cohorts, particularly urban/rural

- CWD presence resulted in greater change in hunting venue among urban as opposed to rural

Helen Cote-Quewezance, Cote First Nations, Saskatchewan

- outlined the importance of healthy wildlife to First Nations people in the form of sustenance,
health, and spirituality.

- very concerned that CWD will likely degrade that aspect of aboriginal life.

- is willing to share knowledge with scientific community but asked for a forum that includes
an effective understanding of aboriginal culture.

Dr. Ellen Goddard, et al, Department of Rural Economy, University of Alberta

- Canadians in general currently have a very limited understanding of CWD, however, it is
somewhat greater than that of Americans.

- concern that CWD constitutes a significant human health risk is very low in both countries
(i.e. much lower ranking than concerns about BSE or other known meat borne pathogens).

- Canadians support efforts to eradicate CWD much more than Americans.

Research initiatives

Dr. Michael Coulthart, et al, Public Health Agency of Canada

- although not occurring to date, he estimates that report of just one probable case of human
CWD could trigger a public health crisis in North America.

- epidemiological studies so far indicate the probability is very slight, however, prion agents
and their transmission properties are highly mutable and adaptable and the possibility can
not be ruled out.

- suggests those involved in human prion disease surveillance should consider the possibility
of human CWD and develop a readiness to deal with it.

Dr. Margit Westphal, McLaughlin Centre for Population Health Risk Assessment,
University of Ottawa

- CWD identified in captive research animals in 1967 has now spread to 18 US states and 2
Canadian provinces in farmed and free ranging cervids.

- complicating development of an effective plan to combat CWD are the facts that it has a
very long latency period, extended environmental persistence, and it lacks a quick and
sensitive diagnostic anti-mortem test.

- “Effective management of CWD requires the development and application of an integrated
risk management framework based on sound principles of risk assessment and management,
and the harmonization of regulation that align trans-border management efforts”.

Judd Aikens et al, Centre for Protein Folding Diseases, University of Alberta

- have identified two prion protein gene variants in Alberta white-tailed deer that are linked to
disease prolongation.

- implications could lead to possible development of resistence but would likely take a very
long time.

Scott Adams and Scott Napper, University of Saskatchewan

- testing is currently underway to determine the effectiveness of a newly developed injectable
CWD vaccine that has shown considerable promise.

- an effective vaccine could be used to prevent CWD in game farm animals but additional
study would be required to determine an effective application method in the wild.

Conclusions drawn from the workshop presentations and discussions

CWD is a newly invasive and fatal neurodegenerative prion disease of cervids known in
North America only since 1967 (45 years) and hosts have not had time to adapt. To date
it is present in 18 US states and 2 Canadian provinces.

$ Attempts to eradicate CWD via intensive culling has generally proved to be ineffective
except where infection is very recent. Evidence of recent timing of infection was shown
in Alberta by lymph node positive but brain negative in tested specimens.

$ In wild cervids the two deer species are most commonly involved. Of those, mule deer
are most heavily infected in western jurisdictions while in east-central states, where mule
deer are absent, white-tails are the only host. Further, of the various cohorts, adult males
are most commonly infected and regulations aimed at providing trophy antlers may be
exacerbating efforts to control CWD prevalence and spread.

$ Culling by management agencies and/or by directing hunting pressure was shown to be
ineffective in eradicating and even the in halting the spread of the disease.

$ Surveillance for prevalence and degree of spread via testing hunter-killed animals is
currently the most common management method in practice. It has also been shown that
public awareness, understanding, and attitudes are critical factors to consider when
embarking on control activities.

$ Factors complicating the control or management of CWD are:

- CWD has a very long latency period.

- Currently the only tests for diagnosing CWD in living animals is to collect tonsil or
rectal lymph biopsy tissues.

- Prions will bind with clay particles in soil and thus remain persistent in areas containing
infected animals.

- Although there are some signs of developing immunity or resistence in hosts it will take
very long time (i.e. > 200 years) to manifest itself.

-In infected foci, close relatedness appears to be a factor in increase prevalence, which
could also result from mule deer being more gregarious and exhibiting clumping
behavior, particularly during winter when CWD transmission is most likely to occur.

- Some mule deer are migratory, which further complicates CWD containment efforts.

$ CWD is slow to show population effects but with time it is predicted to result in
significant reductions in density and distributions of ecologically, economically, socially
important cervids in all jurisdictions with CWD infections.

Presently there are only speculative indications of CWD crossing species barrier but on
the slim chance human CWD occurs, it is predicted there will be general public panic and
adverse repercussions to recreational and First Nation’s use of cervids and subsequent
negative effects on economies in several jurisdictions.

$ Social science is directing further effort into determining probable effects of CWD
presence on public understanding, awareness, and attitudes toward control efforts and in
turn how this may influence hunter behavior, food safety, and the economy.

Identified needs for future efforts to manage CWD


Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) Surveillance Update: March 23, 2011

All heads of deer and elk received to date from the fall hunting seasons have been
tested, although a few heads continue to dribble into the lab. Herein we provide the
summary of the 2010 fall surveillance. However, the ongoing CWD Surveillance
Program will continue to test heads whenever they are received throughout the

From September 1, 2010 to March 23, 2011 we tested 5062 heads (primarily deer
heads) and detected nineteen (0.4%) new cases of CWD in wild deer in Alberta.
Seventeen of the positive deer were mule deer: twelve males, five females
The two remaining positive deer were white-tail males
All positive deer were harvested by hunters and were in very good to excellent body

All but one positive deer were adults. The remaining positive deer was a yearling in
the early stages of infection.

Many of the infected deer were near previous known CWD cases, largely in the Battle
River and Ribstone Creek drainages in the north and the Red Deer River drainage in
the south.

A cluster of infected deer was found north and west of Dinosaur Provincial Park in
WMU 152 – a significant extension of the disease westward along the Red Deer

Of particular significance, the positive yearling mule deer buck was the first case of
CWD found in the North Saskatchewan River valley in Alberta. This is strong
evidence of recent expansion of the disease into or within the valley.

As anticipated, additional infected deer were found in CFB Wainwright in association
with the Battle River valley.

The 19 new hunter-kill cases are in addition to the road-kill case found in February
2010, thus the annual total for 2010 is 20 cases.

Ongoing NEGATIVE test results were posted to AlbertaRelm and made available to
individual hunters. To date, approximately 50% of the test results have been read
by the hunter.

Ongoing POSITIVE test results were provided by phone directly to the hunter who
harvested the infected deer.

As in previous years, hunters who harvest a CWD-infected deer were given the
options of

! keeping the meat

! turning in the meat and receiving a replacement licence for this year (if the season
was still open where the infected deer was harvested)

! turning in the meat and receiving a replacement licence for next year for the same
species and location as the infected deer

The total number of CWD cases detected in wild deer in Alberta since September
2005 is 94.

As part of the ongoing provincial surveillance program, we also are testing a random
sample of emaciated cervids associated with severe winter conditions occurring in
various parts of Alberta

To learn more about CWD in Alberta, visit:

Attention Hunters!

If you have frozen deer heads that you would like to submit to the ongoing CWD
surveillance program, please drop them off at any Fish and Wildlife office during
regular office hours. For more details, visit:

CWD Map and Statistics



snip...see full text ;

now, a few things to ponder about those said double fences that will supposedly stop those deer from escaping.

what about water that drains from any of these game farms. surrounding water tables etc., are the double fences going to stop the water from becoming contaminated? where does it drain? who's drinking it?

Detection of Protease-Resistant Prion Protein in Water from a CWD-Endemic Area


Tracy A. Nichols*1,2, Bruce Pulford1, Christy Wyckoff1,2, Crystal Meyerett1, Brady Michel1, Kevin Gertig3, Jean E. Jewell4, Glenn C. Telling5 and M.D. Zabel1 1Department of Microbiology, Immunology and Pathology, College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO 80523, USA 2National Wildlife Research Center, Wildlife Services, United States Department of Agriculture, Fort Collins, Colorado, 80521, USA 3Fort Collins Water and Treatment Operations, Fort Collins, Colorado, 80521, USA 4 Department of Veterinary Sciences, Wyoming State Veterinary Laboratory, University of Wyoming, Laramie, Wyoming, 82070, USA 5Department of Microbiology, Immunology, Molecular Genetics and Neurology, Sanders Brown Center on Aging, University of Kentucky, Lexington, Kentucky, 40536, USA * Corresponding author-

Chronic wasting disease (CWD) is the only known transmissible spongiform encephalopathy affecting free-ranging wildlife. Experimental and epidemiological data indicate that CWD can be transmitted horizontally and via blood and saliva, although the exact mode of natural transmission remains unknown. Substantial evidence suggests that prions can persist in the environment, implicating it as a potential prion reservoir and transmission vehicle. CWD- positive animals can contribute to environmental prion load via biological materials including saliva, blood, urine and feces, shedding several times their body weight in possibly infectious excreta in their lifetime, as well as through decomposing carcasses. Sensitivity limitations of conventional assays hamper evaluation of environmental prion loads in water. Here we show the ability of serial protein misfolding cyclic amplification (sPMCA) to amplify minute amounts of CWD prions in spiked water samples at a 1:1 x106 , and protease-resistant prions in environmental and municipal-processing water samples from a CWD endemic area. Detection of CWD prions correlated with increased total organic carbon in water runoff from melting winter snowpack. These data suggest prolonged persistence and accumulation of prions in the environment that may promote CWD transmission.


The data presented here demonstrate that sPMCA can detect low levels of PrPCWD in the environment, corroborate previous biological and experimental data suggesting long term persistence of prions in the environment2,3 and imply that PrPCWD accumulation over time may contribute to transmission of CWD in areas where it has been endemic for decades. This work demonstrates the utility of sPMCA to evaluate other environmental water sources for PrPCWD, including smaller bodies of water such as vernal pools and wallows, where large numbers of cervids congregate and into which prions from infected animals may be shed and concentrated to infectious levels.

snip...end...full text at ;

what about rodents there from? 4 American rodents are susceptible to CWD to date. are those double fences going to stop these rodents from escaping these game farms once becoming exposed to CWD?

Chronic Wasting Disease Susceptibility of Four North American Rodents

Chad J. Johnson1*, Jay R. Schneider2, Christopher J. Johnson2, Natalie A. Mickelsen2, Julia A. Langenberg3, Philip N. Bochsler4, Delwyn P. Keane4, Daniel J. Barr4, and Dennis M. Heisey2 1University of Wisconsin School of Veterinary Medicine, Department of Comparative Biosciences, 1656 Linden Drive, Madison WI 53706, USA 2US Geological Survey, National Wildlife Health Center, 6006 Schroeder Road, Madison WI 53711, USA 3Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, 101 South Webster Street, Madison WI 53703, USA 4Wisconsin Veterinary Diagnostic Lab, 445 Easterday Lane, Madison WI 53706, USA *Corresponding author email:

We intracerebrally challenged four species of native North American rodents that inhabit locations undergoing cervid chronic wasting disease (CWD) epidemics. The species were: deer mice (Peromyscus maniculatus), white-footed mice (P. leucopus), meadow voles (Microtus pennsylvanicus), and red-backed voles (Myodes gapperi). The inocula were prepared from the brains of hunter-harvested white-tailed deer from Wisconsin that tested positive for CWD. Meadow voles proved to be most susceptible, with a median incubation period of 272 days. Immunoblotting and immunohistochemistry confirmed the presence of PrPd in the brains of all challenged meadow voles. Subsequent passages in meadow voles lead to a significant reduction in incubation period. The disease progression in red-backed voles, which are very closely related to the European bank vole (M. glareolus) which have been demonstrated to be sensitive to a number of TSEs, was slower than in meadow voles with a median incubation period of 351 days. We sequenced the meadow vole and red-backed vole Prnp genes and found three amino acid (AA) differences outside of the signal and GPI anchor sequences. Of these differences (T56-, G90S, S170N; read-backed vole:meadow vole), S170N is particularly intriguing due its postulated involvement in "rigid loop" structure and CWD susceptibility. Deer mice did not exhibit disease signs until nearly 1.5 years post-inoculation, but appear to be exhibiting a high degree of disease penetrance. White-footed mice have an even longer incubation period but are also showing high penetrance. Second passage experiments show significant shortening of incubation periods. Meadow voles in particular appear to be interesting lab models for CWD. These rodents scavenge carrion, and are an important food source for many predator species. Furthermore, these rodents enter human and domestic livestock food chains by accidental inclusion in grain and forage. Further investigation of these species as potential hosts, bridge species, and reservoirs of CWD is required.

please see ;

Oral.29: Susceptibility of Domestic Cats to CWD Infection

Amy Nalls, Nicholas J. Haley, Jeanette Hayes-Klug, Kelly Anderson, Davis M. Seelig, Dan S. Bucy, Susan L. Kraft, Edward A. Hoover and Candace K. Mathiason† Colorado State University; Fort Collins, CO USA†Presenting author; Email:

Domestic and non-domestic cats have been shown to be susceptible to one prion disease, feline spongiform encephalopathy (FSE), thought to be transmitted through consumption of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) contaminated meat. Because domestic and free ranging felids scavenge cervid carcasses, including those in CWD affected areas, we evaluated the susceptibility of domestic cats to CWD infection experimentally. Groups of n = 5 cats each were inoculated either intracerebrally (IC) or orally (PO) with CWD deer brain homogenate. Between 40–43 months following IC inoculation, two cats developed mild but progressive symptoms including weight loss, anorexia, polydipsia, patterned motor behaviors and ataxia—ultimately mandating euthanasia. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) on the brain of one of these animals (vs. two age-matched controls) performed just before euthanasia revealed increased ventricular system volume, more prominent sulci, and T2 hyperintensity deep in the white matter of the frontal hemisphere and in cortical grey distributed through the brain, likely representing inflammation or gliosis. PrPRES and widely distributed peri-neuronal vacuoles were demonstrated in the brains of both animals by immunodetection assays. No clinical signs of TSE have been detected in the remaining primary passage cats after 80 months pi. Feline-adapted CWD was sub-passaged into groups (n=4 or 5) of cats by IC, PO, and IP/SQ routes. Currently, at 22 months pi, all five IC inoculated cats are demonstrating abnormal behavior including increasing aggressiveness, pacing, and hyper responsiveness. Two of these cats have developed rear limb ataxia. Although the limited data from this ongoing study must be considered preliminary, they raise the potential for cervid-to-feline transmission in nature. Prion

Avian Scavengers as Vectors of Prion Disease—
Mechanisms for the spread of CWD in North American
deer and other cervids are not completely understood.
NWRC researchers hypothesize that avian
scavengers may play a role in translocating CWD in
the wild, potentially encountering CWD-infected
carcasses, consuming infected tissue, and transporting
it over long distances before depositing feces. In
a recent study, researchers inoculated 100 mice with
fecal extracts obtained from American crows (Corvus
brachyrhynchos) that were force-fed material infected
with mouse scrapie (PrPSc). These mice showed
severe neurological dysfunction 196 to 231 days post
inoculation and tested positive for PrPSc. These results
demonstrate that a common, migratory North American
scavenger can pass infective prions in feces and,
therefore, could play a role in the geographic spread
of CWD in the environment.

Distribution and Epizootiology of CWD in
Nebraska Deer—Western Nebraska is considered
part of the core endemic area of CWD, yet little is
known about prevalence rates or the factors affecting
the distribution of CWD in this area. NWRC
researchers used data on the occurrence of CWD
collected from 2000 to 2007 throughout Nebraska
to calculate prevalence rates and investigate
the role that key spatial, temporal, demographic,
and environmental factors have on the distribution
of this disease. Researchers conducted analyses
at two spatial scales, including the Panhandle
region of western Nebraska and Statewide.
Results show that the dynamics of CWD were
similar between the different spatial scales. CWD
was more prevalent in mule deer (Odocoileus
hemionus) than in white-tailed deer (Odocoileus
virginianus), in male deer than in female deer, and
in adult deer than in fawns. Overall prevalence has
increased from 0.3 to 1.4 percent in the Panhandle
and from 0.2 to 0.5 percent Statewide. The sex of
the animal and the interaction of latitude and longitude
had the most influence when predicting CWD
occurrence in Nebraska at both spatial scales. Age,
year collected, and soil texture were also predictors.
These results concur with studies conducted
in other areas of the CWD core endemic area, suggesting
that CWD dynamics are governed by similar
processes throughout the disease’s range.

Project Contact: Kurt VerCauteren


Sunday, November 01, 2009

American crows (Corvus brachyrhynchos) and potential spreading of CWD through feces of digested infectious carcases

Monday, July 13, 2009

Deer Carcass Decomposition and Potential Scavenger Exposure to Chronic Wasting Disease

Monday, February 14, 2011



Journal of Wildlife Diseases, 47(1), 2011, pp. 78-93 © Wildlife Disease Association 2011

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Detection of protease-resistant cervid prion protein in water from a CWD-endemic area


Thursday, January 26, 2012

The Risk of Prion Zoonoses

Science 27 January 2012: Vol. 335 no. 6067 pp. 411-413 DOI: 10.1126/science.1218167

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Facilitated Cross-Species Transmission of Prions in Extraneural Tissue

Science 27 January 2012: Vol. 335 no. 6067 pp. 472-475 DOI: 10.1126/science.1215659

at least that’s my opinion. my intentions are NOT, and never has been to split up the hunters. it’s just been to inform them of the rest of the science. I cannot stress enough, it’s not just about you, and what you consume as hunters. I don’t care what you eat. but once you expose yourself to the TSE Prion via CWD infected deer and or elk, and then go have medical procedures done, surgical, dental, donate blood, tissue, etc., then you expose everybody with the TSE Prion disease. then it becomes everybody’s business. ...

kind regards, terry

-------- Original Message --------

Subject: Tracking spongiform encephalopathies in North America LANCET INFECTIOUS DISEASE Volume 3, Number 8 01 August 2003

Date: Tue, 29 Jul 2003 17:35:30 –0500

From: "Terry S. Singeltary Sr." Reply-To: Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy


Volume 3, Number 8 01 August 2003


Tracking spongiform encephalopathies in North America

Xavier Bosch

My name is Terry S Singeltary Sr, and I live in Bacliff, Texas. I lost my mom to hvCJD (Heidenhain variant CJD) and have been searching for answers ever since. What I have found is that we have not been told the truth. CWD in deer and elk is a small portion of a much bigger problem.

49-year-old Singeltary is one of a number of people who have remained largely unsatisfied after being told that a close relative died from a rapidly progressive dementia compatible with spontaneous Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD). So he decided to gather hundreds of documents on transmissible spongiform encephalopathies (TSE) and realised that if Britons could get variant CJD from bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), Americans might get a similar disorder from chronic wasting disease (CWD)the relative of mad cow disease seen among deer and elk in the USA. Although his feverish search did not lead him to the smoking gun linking CWD to a similar disease in North American people, it did uncover a largely disappointing situation.

Singeltary was greatly demoralised at the few attempts to monitor the occurrence of CJD and CWD in the USA. Only a few states have made CJD reportable. Human and animal TSEs should be reportable nationwide and internationally, he complained in a letter to the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA 2003; 285: 733). I hope that the CDC does not continue to expect us to still believe that the 85% plus of all CJD cases which are sporadic are all spontaneous, without route or source.

Until recently, CWD was thought to be confined to the wild in a small region in Colorado. But since early 2002, it has been reported in other areas, including Wisconsin, South Dakota, and the Canadian province of Saskatchewan. Indeed, the occurrence of CWD in states that were not endemic previously increased concern about a widespread outbreak and possible transmission to people and cattle.

To date, experimental studies have proven that the CWD agent can be transmitted to cattle by intracerebral inoculation and that it can cross the mucous membranes of the digestive tract to initiate infection in lymphoid tissue before invasion of the central nervous system. Yet the plausibility of CWD spreading to people has remained elusive.

Part of the problem seems to stem from the US surveillance system. CJD is only reported in those areas known to be endemic foci of CWD. Moreover, US authorities have been criticised for not having performed enough prionic tests in farm deer and elk.

Although in November last year the US Food and Drug Administration issued a directive to state public-health and agriculture officials prohibiting material from CWD-positive animals from being used as an ingredient in feed for any animal species, epidemiological control and research in the USA has been quite different from the situation in the UK and Europe regarding BSE.

Getting data on TSEs in the USA from the government is like pulling teeth, Singeltary argues. You get it when they want you to have it, and only what they want you to have.

Norman Foster, director of the Cognitive Disorders Clinic at the University of Michigan (Ann Arbor, MI, USA), says that current surveillance of prion disease in people in the USA is inadequate to detect whether CWD is occurring in human beings; adding that, the cases that we know about are reassuring, because they do not suggest the appearance of a new variant of CJD in the USA or atypical features in patients that might be exposed to CWD. However, until we establish a system that identifies and analyses a high proportion of suspected prion disease cases we will not know for sure. The USA should develop a system modelled on that established in the UK, he points out.

Ali Samii, a neurologist at Seattle VA Medical Center who recently reported the cases of three hunterstwo of whom were friendswho died from pathologically confirmed CJD, says that at present there are insufficient data to claim transmission of CWD into humans; adding that [only] by asking [the questions of venison consumption and deer/elk hunting] in every case can we collect suspect cases and look into the plausibility of transmission further. Samii argues that by making both doctors and hunters more aware of the possibility of prions spreading through eating venison, doctors treating hunters with dementia can consider a possible prion disease, and doctors treating CJD patients will know to ask whether they ate venison.

CDC spokesman Ermias Belay says that the CDC will not be investigating the [Samii] cases because there is no evidence that the men ate CWD-infected meat. He notes that although the likelihood of CWD jumping the species barrier to infect humans cannot be ruled out 100% and that [we] cannot be 100% sure that CWD does not exist in humans& the data seeking evidence of CWD transmission to humans have been very limited.


> he complained in a letter to the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA 2003; 285: 733). I hope that the CDC does not continue to expect us to still believe that the 85% plus of all CJD cases which are sporadic are all spontaneous, without route or source. <

actually, that quote was from a more recent article in the Journal of Neurology (see below), not the JAMA article.

Full Text

Diagnosis and Reporting of Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease Singeltary, Sr et al. JAMA.2001; 285: 733-734.

2 January 2000

British Medical Journal

U.S. Scientist should be concerned with a CJD epidemic in the U.S., as well

15 November 1999

British Medical Journal

vCJD in the USA * BSE in U.S.

Singeltary submission to PLOS ;

No competing interests declared.

see full text ;

Tuesday, November 08, 2011

Can Mortality Data Provide Reliable Indicators for Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease Surveillance? A Study in France from 2000 to 2008 Vol. 37, No. 3-4, 2011 Original Paper

Conclusions:These findings raise doubt about the possibility of a reliable CJD surveillance only based on mortality data.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Human Prion Diseases in the United States January 1, 2010 ***FINAL***

14th ICID International Scientific Exchange Brochure -

Final Abstract Number: ISE.114

Session: International Scientific Exchange

Transmissible Spongiform encephalopathy (TSE) animal and human TSE in North America update October 2009

T. Singeltary

Bacliff, TX, USA


An update on atypical BSE and other TSE in North America. Please remember, the typical U.K. c-BSE, the atypical l-BSE (BASE), and h-BSE have all been documented in North America, along with the typical scrapie's, and atypical Nor-98 Scrapie, and to date, 2 different strains of CWD, and also TME. All these TSE in different species have been rendered and fed to food producing animals for humans and animals in North America (TSE in cats and dogs ?), and that the trading of these TSEs via animals and products via the USA and Canada has been immense over the years, decades.


12 years independent research of available data


I propose that the current diagnostic criteria for human TSEs only enhances and helps the spreading of human TSE from the continued belief of the UKBSEnvCJD only theory in 2009. With all the science to date refuting it, to continue to validate this old myth, will only spread this TSE agent through a multitude of potential routes and sources i.e. consumption, medical i.e., surgical, blood, dental, endoscopy, optical, nutritional supplements, cosmetics etc.


I would like to submit a review of past CJD surveillance in the USA, and the urgent need to make all human TSE in the USA a reportable disease, in every state, of every age group, and to make this mandatory immediately without further delay. The ramifications of not doing so will only allow this agent to spread further in the medical, dental, surgical arena's. Restricting the reporting of CJD and or any human TSE is NOT scientific. Iatrogenic CJD knows NO age group, TSE knows no boundaries. I propose as with Aguzzi, Asante, Collinge, Caughey, Deslys, Dormont, Gibbs, Gajdusek, Ironside, Manuelidis, Marsh, et al and many more, that the world of TSE Transmissible Spongiform Encephalopathy is far from an exact science, but there is enough proven science to date that this myth should be put to rest once and for all, and that we move forward with a new classification for human and animal TSE that would properly identify the infected species, the source species, and then the route.


CJD Deaths Reported by CJDSS1, 1994-20112 As of January 31, 2011

3. Final classification of 49 cases from 2009, 2010, 2011 is pending.


USA 2011


National Prion Disease Pathology Surveillance Center

Cases Examined1
(November 1, 2010)

Year Total Referrals2 Prion Disease Sporadic Familial Iatrogenic vCJD

1996 & earlier 51 33 28 5 0 0

1997 114 68 59 9 0 0

1998 87 51 43 7 1 0

1999 121 73 65 8 0 0

2000 146 103 89 14 0 0

2001 209 119 109 10 0 0

2002 248 149 125 22 2 0

2003 274 176 137 39 0 0

2004 325 186 164 21 0 13

2005 344 194 157 36 1 0

2006 383 197 166 29 0 24

2007 377 214 187 27 0 0

2008 394 231 205 25 0 0

2009 425 258 215 43 0 0

2010 333 213 158 33 0 0

TOTAL 38315 22656 1907 328 4 3

1 Listed based on the year of death or, if not available, on year of referral;

2 Cases with suspected prion disease for which brain tissue and/or blood (in familial cases) were submitted;

3 Disease acquired in the United Kingdom;

4 Disease was acquired in the United Kingdom in one case and in Saudi Arabia in the other case;

5 Includes 18 cases in which the diagnosis is pending, and 18 inconclusive cases;

6 Includes 23 (22 from 2010) cases with type determination pending in which the diagnosis of vCJD has been excluded.

Please notice where sporadic CJD cases in 1996 went from 28 cases, to 215 cases in 2009, the highest recorded year to date. sporadic CJD is on a steady rise, and has been since 1996.

I also urge you to again notice these disturbing factors in lines 5 and 6 ;

5 Includes 18 cases in which the diagnosis is pending, and 18 inconclusive cases;

6 Includes 23 (22 from 2010) cases with type determination pending in which the diagnosis of vCJD has been excluded.


Monday, August 9, 2010

National Prion Disease Pathology Surveillance Center Cases Examined (July 31, 2010)

(please watch and listen to the video and the scientist speaking about atypical BSE and sporadic CJD and listen to Professor Aguzzi)

THE steady rise of sporadic CJD cases in Canada AND USA, with many unusual cases of ''PENDING CLASSIFICATIONS" which have been pending now FOR 3 YEARS. HOW long can this cover-up continue $$$

The most recent assessments (and reassessments) were published in June 2005 (Table I; 18), and included the categorisation of Canada, the USA, and Mexico as GBR III. Although only Canada and the USA have reported cases, the historically open system of trade in North America suggests that it is likely that BSE is present also in Mexico.


Saturday, March 5, 2011


Thursday, January 26, 2012

Facilitated Cross-Species Transmission of Prions in Extraneural Tissue

Science 27 January 2012: Vol. 335 no. 6067 pp. 472-475 DOI: 10.1126/science.1215659

Thursday, January 26, 2012

The Risk of Prion Zoonoses

Science 27 January 2012: Vol. 335 no. 6067 pp. 411-413 DOI: 10.1126/science.1218167


Thursday, May 26, 2011

Travel History, Hunting, and Venison Consumption Related to Prion Disease Exposure, 2006-2007

FoodNet Population Survey

Journal of the American Dietetic Association Volume 111, Issue 6 , Pages 858-863, June 2011.

NOR IS THE FDA recalling this CWD positive elk meat for the well being of the dead elk ;

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Noah's Ark Holding, LLC, Dawson, MN RECALL Elk products contain meat derived from an elk confirmed to have CWD NV, CA, TX, CO, NY, UT, FL, OK RECALLS AND FIELD CORRECTIONS: FOODS CLASS II

Thursday, April 03, 2008

A prion disease of cervids: Chronic wasting disease

2008 1: Vet Res. 2008 Apr 3;39(4):41 A prion disease of cervids: Chronic wasting disease Sigurdson CJ.


*** twenty-seven CJD patients who regularly consumed venison were reported to the Surveillance Center***,

snip... full text ;

From: TSS (


Date: September 30, 2002 at 7:06 am PST

From: "Belay, Ermias"


Cc: "Race, Richard (NIH)" ; ; "Belay, Ermias"

Sent: Monday, September 30, 2002 9:22 AM


Dear Sir/Madam,

In the Archives of Neurology you quoted (the abstract of which was attached to your email), we did not say CWD in humans will present like variant CJD.

That assumption would be wrong. I encourage you to read the whole article and call me if you have questions or need more clarification (phone: 404-639-3091). Also, we do not claim that "no-one has ever been infected with prion disease from eating venison." Our conclusion stating that we found no strong evidence of CWD transmission to humans in the article you quoted or in any other forum is limited to the patients we investigated.

Ermias Belay, M.D. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

-----Original Message-----


Sent: Sunday, September 29, 2002 10:15 AM

To:;; ebb8@CDC.GOV


Sunday, November 10, 2002 6:26 PM




an oxymoron or what ???

To date, ongoing investigations by state and federal public health officials have shown no causal relationship between CWD and human health problems, for more information see CWD and Potential Transmission to Humans .

Monday, November 14, 2011

WYOMING Creutzfeldt Jakob Disease, CWD, TSE, PRION REPORTING 2011

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Wisconsin Creutzfeldt Jakob Disease, CWD, TSE, PRION REPORTING 2011

Sunday, November 13, 2011


PLEASE SEE THE LETTER THE British Deer Farmers Association October 1994


October 1994

Mr R.N. Elmhirst Chairman British Deer Farmers Association Holly Lodge Spencers Lane BerksWell Coventry CV7 7BZ

Dear Mr Elmhirst,


Thank you for your recent letter concerning the publication of the third annual report from the CJD Surveillance Unit. I am sorry that you are dissatisfied with the way in which this report was published.

The Surveillance Unit is a completely independant outside body and the Department of Health is committed to publishing their reports as soon as they become available. In the circumstances it is not the practice to circulate the report for comment since the findings of the report would not be amended. In future we can ensure that the British Deer Farmers Association receives a copy of the report in advance of publication.

The Chief Medical Officer has undertaken to keep the public fully informed of the results of any research in respect of CJD. This report was entirely the work of the unit and was produced completely independantly of the the Department.

The statistical results reqarding the consumption of venison was put into perspective in the body of the report and was not mentioned at all in the press release. Media attention regarding this report was low key but gave a realistic presentation of the statistical findings of the Unit. This approach to publication was successful in that consumption of venison was highlighted only once by the media ie. in the News at one television proqramme.

I believe that a further statement about the report, or indeed statistical links between CJD and consumption of venison, would increase, and quite possibly give damaging credence, to the whole issue. From the low key media reports of which I am aware it seems unlikely that venison consumption will suffer adversely, if at all.


Colorado Division of Parks & Wildlife

9 August 2011

Review of Chronic Wasting Disease Management Policies and Programs in Colorado




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