Wednesday, October 03, 2012

TAHC Chronic Wasting Disease Rule What you need to know

TAHC Chronic Wasting Disease Rule

What you need to know

October 3, 2012 The Texas Animal Health Commission (TAHC) recently amended Chapter 40, "Chronic Wasting Disease", by adopting a new rule entitled, "CWD Movement Restriction Zone". The rule affects certain cervid species and delineates movement restriction zones and other necessary disease management practices related to the control of CWD in far west Texas.

Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) has been discovered in mule deer in the Hueco Mountains of southern New Mexico and western Texas. Samples from two mule deer recently taken in this area were confirmed positive for CWD. These are the first cases of CWD detected in Texas deer.

What is CWD?

CWD is not known to affect people, but a number of cervid species are susceptible. Besides mule deer, other susceptible species include white-tailed deer, elk, red deer, Sika deer and moose. The progressively fatal disease is most commonly exhibited by chronic weight loss and abnormal behavior such as disorientation. Prions are the infectious agent of CWD and can be found throughout the body of an infected animal. The prions are present in the body fluids of infected animals and can be shed onto the soil where they may remain infectious to other susceptible animals for many years. For this reason, the TAHC rules apply to land as well as animals within the zones.

What is the Rule?

The rule is intended to define susceptible species, establish boundaries for a High Risk Zone (HRZ) and Containment Zone (CZ), restrict movement within the zones, establish surveillance systems within the zones, and also address requirements for new or existing herds' ability to gain CWD monitored status designations by TAHC. Counties affected by the rule include El Paso, and portions of Hudspeth, Culberson, Reeves, Ward and Loving.

Restricted movement within the zones: No susceptible cervid species may be trapped and transported from within either zone to another location. No susceptible species may be introduced into a herd within the HRZ or the CZ that does not participate in the TAHC Monitored Herd Program. No susceptible species may leave a herd within either zone until it has achieved Level C status of five years or higher. Establishing surveillance within the zones: No part of a carcass of a susceptible species (killed or found dead), within the HRZ or CZ may be removed unless a testable CWD sample from the carcass is collected by or provided to the TAHC or TPWD (excluding bones with no tissue attached). CWD Monitored Herd Status designations within the zones: Monitored herds already in the zones may keep their existing status if they continue to meet program requirements Susceptible species moved into newly established facilities in either zone will have their status reset to zero

Where/What is the Containment Zone (CZ)?

The Containment Zone (CZ) is the geographic area where there is a high risk of CWD existing. The CZ is defined as follows; beginning in Culberson County where State Highway 62-180 enters from New Mexico and thence in a southwesterly direction to the intersection with State Highway 54 and thence following that in a southwesterly direction to the intersection with IH 20 and thence following it in a westerly direction until Ft. Hancock to State Highway 20 and thence following it a westerly direction to Farm Road 1088 (east of Ft. Hancock), and thence following it in a southerly direction to the Rio Grande River to where it enters the state of New Mexico.

Where/What is the High Risk Zone (HRZ)?

The High Risk Zone (HRZ) is an area which serves as a buffer (surveillance) zone between the Containment Zone and the rest of Texas. The HRZ is defined as follows: beginning in Reeves County where the Pecos River enters from New Mexico and meanders in a southeasterly direction as the boundary between Reeves County and Loving and Ward Counties to the intersection with IH 20 and thence following it in a westerly direction until the intersection with State Highway 54 and thence following it in a northwesterly direction until the intersection with State Highway 62-180 and thence in a northeasterly direction to the border with the state of New Mexico and Culberson County.

What Species do these Rules Apply To?

The TAHC rule applies to the non-indigenous species of cervid species of Texas under its jurisdiction including moose, red deer, elk and Sika deer. The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) also proposed similar rules for the cervid species it regulates (indigenous to Texas), including white-tailed deer and mule deer.

Map of the Containment Zones and High Risk Zones

Map of CZ and HRZ

Who do I call for more information? For more information visit or call 1-800-550-8242

Yvonne "Bonnie" Ramirez, Director of Communications & Public Relations Texas Animal Health Commission (TAHC)



Texas Animal Health Commission

“Serving Texas Animal Agriculture Since 1893”

Dee Ellis, DVM, MPA ● Executive Director

P.O. Box l2966 ● Austin, Texas 78711 ● (800) 550-8242

For more information contact the Communication & PR Dept. at 1-800-550-0710 or at



September 27, 2012

TAHC Proposes Modifications to Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) Rules

AUSTIN – The Texas Animal Health Commission (TAHC) will soon be accepting public comments on rules proposed at its September 18 meeting to amend Chapter 40, entitled “Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD)”. Publication of the proposed rules is expected to be in mid-October with a 45 day comment period to follow.

The proposed rules revise numerous current requirements in an effort to address recent developments involving CWD. This includes the diagnosis of CWD in two mule deer near the New Mexico border and the addition of red deer and Sika deer to the list of species susceptible to CWD. The amendments would also bring Texas rules into alignment with the recently released Federal CWD interim final rule, which sets the minimum standards for interstate movement of cervid species.

The proposed TAHC rules apply to the non-indigenous cervid species of Texas under its jurisdiction. The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) is also in the process of evaluating its rules for the cervid species it regulates (indigenous to Texas), including white-tailed deer and mule deer.

Below are key points of the proposed rules to Chapter 40:

• Require additional cervid species such as North American Elk or Wapiti, red deer and Sika deer to participate in surveillance for CWD if they are being moved or transported within the state.

• Provide enrollment requirements for the TAHC Complete Monitored Herd Program for CWD, based in large part on the USDA interim final rule on CWD.

o Complete physical inventory of the herd every three years

o Fences must be 8 feet in height for herds enrolling after the rule is effective

o Require 30 feet of separation between herds, with no shared working facilities

o Requires reporting of all CWD suspicious animals and testing of all death losses in animals 12 months of age or older (changed from 16 months).

• Delegates authority to the Executive Director to issue an order to declare a CWD high risk area or county based on sound epidemiological principles for disease detection, control and eradication.

“The rule proposals are written to meet the federal standards but they can be adapted to recognize comments received,” Dr. Andy Schwartz, Assistant Executive Director, said. “The TAHC is committed to hosting as many meetings as necessary with the cervid industry and stakeholder groups to ensure that a successful Texas specific program is created that matches the USDA interim final rule. The TAHC’s ultimate goal is to enhance marketability.” CWD has never been shown to affect people or domestic livestock. The progressively fatal disease causes chronic weight loss and abnormal behavior such as disorientation. Prions (the infectious agent of CWD), are present in the body fluids of infected animals, and can be shed onto the soil where they may remain infectious to other susceptible animals for many years. For this reason the proposed TAHC rules apply to land, as well as cervids where CWD has been found or is likely to be found.

At its September 18 meeting, the Commission also passed a rule proposed at their previous meeting, establishing movement restriction zones in the Trans-Pecos Region of far West Texas. This will allow a coordinated effort between the TAHC and TPWD to control and contain CWD in the Hueco Mountains where it was recently discovered. The two agencies are currently working on plans for enhanced hunter kill surveillance and movement control enforcement for the coming hunting season.

“The TAHC will continue to work closely with Texas Parks and Wildlife and the CWD Task Force to ensure alignment of our rules and cooperation to protect the health of the entire cervid population of Texas,” said Dr. Dee Ellis, State Veterinarian and TAHC Executive Director.

A detailed explanation of the rule proposals will be available soon on the TAHC web site at .

The TAHC rule proposals have a comment period of 45 days once they have been published. The TAHC encourages and appreciates all comments.

Comments on the TAHC’s proposed regulations must be submitted in writing to Carol Pivonka, Texas Animal Health Commission, 2105 Kramer Lane, Austin, Texas 78758, by fax at (512) 719-0721 or by e-mail to . Founded in 1893, the Texas Animal Health Commission works to protect the health of all Texas livestock, including: cattle, swine, poultry, sheep, goats, equine animals, and exotic livestock.


Wisconsin : Six White-Tailed Deer Fawns Test Positive for CWD

Date: May 13, 2003 Source: Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources

Contacts: Julie Langenberg Wildlife Veterinarian 608-266-3143 Tom Hauge Director, Bureau of Wildlife Management 608-266-2193

MADISON -- Six fawns in the area of south central Wisconsin where chronic wasting disease has been found in white-tailed deer have tested positive for the disease, according to Department of Natural Resources wildlife health officials. These are the youngest wild white-tailed deer detected with chronic wasting disease (CWD) to date.

Approximately 4,200 fawns, defined as deer under 1 year of age, were sampled from the eradication zone over the last year. The majority of fawns sampled were between the ages of 5 to 9 months, though some were as young as 1 month. Two of the six fawns with CWD detected were 5 to 6 months old. All six of the positive fawns were taken from the core area of the CWD eradication zone where the highest numbers of positive deer have been identified.

"This is the first intensive sampling for CWD in fawns anywhere," said Dr. Julie Langenberg, Department of Natural Resources wildlife veterinarian, "and we are trying to learn as much as we can from these data".

"One noteworthy finding is simply the fact that we found positive fawns," Dr. Langenberg said. "These results do show us that CWD transmission can happen at a very young age in wild white-tailed deer populations. However, we found that the percentage of fawns infected with CWD is very low, in the area of 0.14 percent. If there was a higher rate of infection in fawns, then fawns dispersing in the spring could be much more worrisome for disease spread."

Dr. Langenberg noted that while the youngest CWD-positive fawns had evidence of disease-causing prions only in lymph node tissue, several of the older CWD-positive fawns had evidence of CWD prions in both lymph node and brain tissues -- suggesting further progression of the disease.

"Finding CWD prions in both lymph and brain tissues of deer this young is slightly surprising," said Langenberg, "and provides information that CWD infection and illness may progress more rapidly in a white-tailed deer than previously suspected. Published literature suggests that CWD doesn't cause illness in a deer until approximately 16 months of age. Our fawn data shows that a few wild white-tailed deer may become sick from CWD or may transmit the disease before they reach that age of 16 months."

One of the positive fawns was shot with a doe that was also CWD positive. Information about these fawn cases combined with will help researchers who are studying the age and routes of CWD transmission in wild deer populations. "More data analysis and ongoing deer movement studies should give us an even better understanding of how this disease moves across the landscape", said Langenberg.

"Thanks to eradication zone hunters who submitted deer of all ages for sampling, we have a valuable set of fawn data that is contributing to our state's and the nation's understanding about CWD," Langenberg said.

> > > Two of the six fawns with CWD detected were 5 to 6 months old. < < <

Why doesn't the Wisconsin DNR want to routinely test fawns ?

The DNR highly discourages the testing of any fawns regardless of where they were harvested. Of the more than 15,000 fawns from the CWD-MZ that have been tested, only 23 were test positive, and most of those were nearly one year old. It is exceedingly unlikely that a deer less than one year old would test positive for CWD, even in the higher CWD prevalence areas of southern Wisconsin. Few fawns will have been exposed to CWD, and because this disease spreads through the deer's body very slowly, it is very rare in a fawn that the disease has progressed to a level that is detectable. This means that testing a fawn provides almost no information valuable to understanding CWD in Wisconsin's deer herd and does not provide information of great value to the hunter in making a decision about venison consumption.

> > > It is exceedingly unlikely that a deer less than one year old would test positive for CWD < < < ???

Chronic Wasting Disease in a Wisconsin White-Tailed Deer Farm

and 15 of 22 fawns aged 6 to 9 months (68.2%) were positive.

specific susceptibility? 194. It is probable, based on age-class specific prevalence data from wild cervids and epidemiological evidence from captive cervids in affected research centres, that both adults and fawns may become infected with CWD (Miller, Wild & Williams, 1998; Miller et al., 2000).

198. In Odocoileus virginianus – white tailed deer, out of 179 white-tailed deer which had become enclosed by an elk farm fence, in Sioux County, northwestern Nebraska, four fawns only eight months old were among the 50% of CWD-positive animals; these fawns were not showing any clinical signs of CWD (Davidson, 2002).

see full text ;

Saturday, February 04, 2012

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

Last year, only one deer was removed from the airport. It was unclear how the deer got past the wildlife fence — there might have been a small opening in the fence, or the deer might have simply jumped the 10 feet. Scherschligt said wildlife studies indicate that deer can sometimes jump 12-foot-tall obstructions, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture rates some whitetail deer as capable of jumping 15 feet.

Jumping to a vertical height of at least eight feet, deer can scale over barriers you may think are impossible. Watching a deer confronted with a vertical, eight-foot tall, hight-tensile wire fence then

watching it leap over from a standing position makes a startling impression. A frightened deer mhurdle a fence as high as 12 feet if given a running start and enough adrenalin. Horizontally, a deer may leap 15 to 30 feet, the longer distance only when frightened. In general, a deer may jump high or long, but not both at the same time. Deer have also been known to crawl under fences and through openings as small as 7.5 inches. The will of a deer to penetrate a fence is dependent on the force of the motivation behind it.

Sauer (1984) reported white-tailed deer could jump a 2.1-m fence from a standing start and could jump a 2.4-m fence from a running start. In contradiction, Fitzwater (1972) indicates that a 2.4-m fence is sufficient to prevent deer from jumping. Ludwig and Bremicker (1981) concluded that 2.4-m fencing was effective at keeping deer out of roadways as long as the length of the fence is extended well beyond the high-risk area for deer-vehicle collisions.

Monday, June 11, 2012

OHIO Captive deer escapees and non-reporting

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

TPWD Gearing Up for CWD Response during Deer Season

Monday, September 17, 2012


Monday, March 26, 2012

Texas Prepares for Chronic Wasting Disease CWD Possibility in Far West Texas

Monday, March 26, 2012


Saturday, June 09, 2012

USDA Establishes a Herd Certification Program for Chronic Wasting Disease in the United States

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

TAHC Modifies Entry Requirements Effective Immediately for Cervids DUE TO CWD


Saturday, July 07, 2012

TEXAS Animal Health Commission Accepting Comments on Chronic Wasting Disease Rule Proposal

Considering the seemingly high CWD prevalence rate in the Sacramento and Hueco Mountains of New Mexico, CWD may be well established in the population and in the environment in Texas at this time.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Chronic Wasting Disease Detected in Far West Texas

key word here is _considering_. so consider this, CWD still spreading in Texas. ...TSS

Friday, September 07, 2012

Texas Wildlife Officials Considering New Deer Movement Rules in Response to CWD

Friday, August 31, 2012


Friday, June 01, 2012


Friday, August 24, 2012

Diagnostic accuracy of rectal mucosa biopsy testing for chronic wasting disease within white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) herds in North America

Saturday, September 01, 2012

Resistance of Soil-Bound Prions to Rumen Digestion

Monday, September 17, 2012

Rapid Transepithelial Transport of Prions Following Inhalation

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Genetic Depletion of Complement Receptors CD21/35 Prevents Terminal Prion Disease in a Mouse Model of Chronic Wasting Disease


October 2012

Synopsis Occurrence, Transmission, and Zoonotic Potential of Chronic Wasting Disease

Controlling the spread of CWD, especially by human action, is a more attainable goal than eradication. Human movement of cervids has likely led to spread of CWD in facilities for captive animals, which has most likely contributed to establishment of new disease foci in free-ranging populations (Figure 1, panel A). Thus, restrictions on human movement of cervids from disease-endemic areas or herds continue to be warranted. Anthropogenic factors that increase cervid congregation such as baiting and feeding should also be restricted to reduce CWD transmission. Appropriate disposal of carcasses of animals with suspected CWD is necessary to limit environmental contamination (20), and attractive onsite disposal options such as composting and burial require further investigation to determine contamination risks. The best options for lowering the risk for recurrence in facilities for captive animals with outbreaks are complete depopulation, stringent exclusion of free-ranging cervids, and disinfection of all exposed surfaces. However, even the most extensive decontamination measures may not be sufficient to eliminate the risk for disease recurrence (20; S.E. Saunders et al. unpub. data)

Wednesday, June 01, 2011

Management of CWD in Canada: Past Practices, Current Conditions, Current Science, Future Risks and Options

Thursday, June 09, 2011

Detection of CWD prions in salivary, urinary, and intestinal tissues of deer: potential mechanisms of prion shedding and transmission

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Environmental Sources of Scrapie Prions


Saturday, June 09, 2012

USDA Establishes a Herd Certification Program for Chronic Wasting Disease in the United States

Thursday, September 27, 2012

TAHC Proposes Modifications to Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) Rules September 27, 2012


Texas Animal Health Commission



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