Wednesday, April 04, 2018

2017 Annual Report | Pennsylvania Game Commission Chronic Wasting Disease CWD TSE Prion

2017 Annual Report | Pennsylvania Game Commission Chronic Wasting Disease CWD TSE Prion

2017 Annual Report | Pennsylvania Game Commission

Pennsylvania Managing the Spread and Prevalence of Chronic Wasting Disease

The Pennsylvania Game Commission collects samples from deer harvested across the state and tests them for chronic wasting disease (CWD), as part of the agency’s ongoing CWD surveillance. Within the state’s Disease Management Areas — where the disease has been detected in captive and free-ranging deer — intensified sampling occurs. During the 2017-18 deer hunting seasons, the Game Commission offered free CWD testing for hunters harvesting deer within Disease Management Areas (DMAs). Free testing offered hunters a way to have their deer tested prior to consuming it, and it provides the Game Commission with additional samples to better pinpoint areas where the disease exists, so specific problem spots might be addressed. Successful hunters within DMAs dropped off heads from more than 1,500 deer in head-collection containers. Game Commission staff collected more than 3,000 other samples within DMAs. In total, nearly 8,000 samples were collected statewide. 

Slightly more than 5,700 whitetails were tested for CWD in 2016; 25 tested positive, all were in or near DMA 2, the only area of the state where CWD has been detected in the wild.
By mid-January 2018, 51 deer from 2017 had tested positive for CWD; all have been within the DMAs. Forty-eight were within DMA 2, in southcentral Pennsylvania; and three were within DMA 3 in northcentral Pennsylvania. 

The majority of samples collected had yet to be analyzed at the time of this report. The agency continues to assess test results to evaluate the best response to confront CWD where it exists. DMA boundaries regularly have been adjusted in relation to newly detected CWD-positive animals. During 2017, the Game Commission partnered with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s APHIS’s Wildlife Services on a CWD surveillance effort where 30 deer were removed by sharpshooters, one of which tested positive for chronic wasting disease. Attempting to control hot spots and remove animals with a greater likelihood of carrying the disease is the agency’s best chance at managing CWD on a larger scale, while minimizing the impact on the larger deer population or diminishing deer hunting opportunities. CWD is not a new disease, and other states have decades of experience dealing with CWD in the wild. 

It first was detected in Pennsylvania in 2012 at a captive deer facility, and it was detected in free-ranging deer soon after. 

By January 2018, in Pennsylvania, CWD had been detected in 98 free-ranging deer. 

CWD is spread from deer to deer through direct and indirect contact. The disease attacks the brains of infected deer, elk, and moose, and will eventually result in the death of the infected animal. There is no live test for CWD and no known cure. There also is no evidence CWD can be transmitted to humans, however, it is recommended the meat of infected deer — or deer thought to be sick — not be consumed. For more information on CWD, the rules applying within DMAs, or what hunters can do to have harvested deer tested for CWD, visit the Game Commission’s website, Information can be found by clicking on the button titled “CWD Information” near the top of the homepage.


HARRISBURG, PA - People who live and hunt deer within parts of Lancaster, Lebanon and Berks counties now need to comply with special rules intended to slow the spread of chronic wasting disease (CWD).
The Pennsylvania Game Commission today established Disease Management Area 4 (DMA 4) in response to a CWD-positive deer recently detected at a captive deer farm in Lancaster County.
DMA 4 encompasses 346 square miles in northeastern Lancaster County, southeastern Lebanon County and western Berks County. The northern part of DMA 4 runs roughly between the cities of Lebanon and Reading. The DMA includes the boroughs of Adamstown, Denver, Ephrata, Mohnton, Richland, Womelsdorf and Wyomissing. State Game Lands 46, 220, 225, 274 and 425 are included in DMA 4.
Within DMAs, special rules apply. The intentional feeding of deer is prohibited. Hunters may not use urine-based deer attractants or possess them while afield. And hunters who harvest deer within a DMA may not transport the carcass outside the DMA without first removing and properly disposing of all high-risk deer parts, including the head and backbone.
While the rules might pose an inconvenience, they are meant to slow the spread of CWD, which so far has been detected in only a few parts of the state.
“CWD is an increasing problem in Pennsylvania, and as the disease emerges in new areas, more Pennsylvanians are impacted,” said Game Commission Executive Director Bryan Burhans. “To this point, however, CWD has been detected in captive or free-ranging deer only in a few, isolated areas of the state. That’s good news for all Pennsylvanians who enjoy deer and deer hunting. And we continue to focus our resources on ways to minimize CWD’s impacts statewide.”
CWD, which is always fatal to deer, elk and other cervids, first was detected in Pennsylvania in 2012 at a captive deer farm in Adams County. CWD has been detected among free-ranging deer in two areas of the state.
In addition to establishing DMA 4, the Game Commission will increase its CWD sampling there.
Within DMA 4, the agency will begin testing all known road-killed deer for CWD. Come hunting season, bins for the collection of deer heads and other high-risk deer parts will be placed in areas for the public to use. Hunters who deposit the heads of the deer they harvest in designated collection bins will be able to have their deer tested, free of charge. And DMAP permits for use within DMA 4 will be available for purchase.
Wayne Laroche, the Game Commission’s special assistant for CWD response, said increased sampling within DMA 4 is necessary to find out whether CWD exists among free-ranging deer there, and adjust the response accordingly.
“We need to know the full extent of the CWD problem in any area where the disease exists,” Laroche said. “We have not detected CWD among free-ranging deer in DMA 4, and maybe we won’t. But if CWD is out there, we surely need to know about it to confront it head-on.”
Information on CWD and Pennsylvania’s DMAs, including maps of all DMAs, is available at

DMA 4 boundary
The exact boundary of DMA 4 is as follows: Beginning in the northwestern extent of the DMA in the city of Lebanon, at the intersection of state Route 897 and U.S. Route 422, proceed east on U.S. Route 422 for 12.3 miles to state Route 419. Turn left on state Route 419 and proceed north for 2.3 miles to Christmas Village Road (state Route 4010). Turn right, proceeding east on Christmas Village Road for 5.1 miles to North Heidelberg Road (state Route 3033). Turn left on North Heidelberg Road, proceeding northeast for 0.6 miles to state Route 183. Turn right on state Route 183, proceeding southeast for 7.7 miles to the U.S. 222. Turn right on U.S. 222 proceeding southwest for 3.2 miles to the interchange with U.S. Route 422 Bypass. Proceed on U.S. Route 422 Bypass for 2.4 miles to intersection with Business Route 222E (Lancaster Avenue). Proceed south on Business 222E for 0.6 miles to the intersection with state Route 625. Turn left onto state Route 625 and proceed south for 16.7 miles to the intersection with Route 23. Turn right on Route 23, proceeding westerly for 9.7 miles to intersection with state Route 772 (Glenbrook Road). Turn right on state Route 772, proceeding northwest for 9.3 miles to state Route 501 (Furnace Hills Pike). Turn right on state Route 501, proceeding northerly for 5 miles to the intersection with U.S. Route 322 (West 28th Division Highway). Turn left on U.S. Route 322, proceeding westerly for 1.3 miles to the Pennsylvania Turnpike (U.S. Route 76). Move right along U.S. Route 76, proceeding east for 0.7 miles to the western boundary of State Game Lands 46. Proceed north, then east for 1.2 miles along the game lands boundary to state Route 501 (Furnace Hills Pike). Turn left on state Route 501, proceeding north for 4.1 miles to the intersection with state Route 419. Turn left, proceeding west for 0.1 miles to state Route 897 (South 5th Street). Turn right on state Route 897, proceeding northwest for 6.2 miles to the starting point at the intersection of state Route 897 and U.S. Route 422.

CWD in Pennsylvania
In Pennsylvania, the Game Commission oversees the management and protection of all free-ranging deer, while farm-raised deer and facilities are overseen by the state Department of Agriculture. The agencies work together to monitor chronic wasting disease.
After CWD was detected in 2012 at a captive deer farm in Adams County, the Game Commission established Disease Management Area 1 (DMA 1), a nearly 600-square-mile area in Adams and York counties, in which restrictions regarding the hunting and feeding of deer applied.
CWD was detected among free-ranging deer a few months later, in three deer harvested by hunters in Bedford and Blair counties in the 2012 firearms season. The deer were detected through the Game Commission’s ongoing CWD surveillance program.
Those CWD-positive deer resulted in the creation of DMA 2, which initially encompassed nearly 900 square miles in parts of Bedford, Blair, Cambria and Huntingdon counties, but since has expanded annually due to the detection of additional free-ranging and captive CWD-positive deer. DMA 2 now encompasses more than 2,845 square miles in parts of Adams, Bedford, Blair Cambria, Clearfield, Cumberland, Franklin, Fulton, Huntingdon and Somerset counties.
So far, 104 free-ranging CWD-positive deer, and 46 of CWD-positive captive deer, have been detected within DMA 2.
In 2014, CWD was detected at a captive deer farm in Jefferson County, leading to the creation of DMA 3, which encompasses about 350 square miles in parts of Clearfield, Indiana and Jefferson counties. In July 2017, a sick-looking adult buck euthanized a month earlier on state game lands in Clearfield County, within DMA 3, was confirmed as CWD-positive. An additional CWD-positive deer was detected within DMA 3 in the 2017-18 hunting season.
In 2017, the Game Commission eliminated DMA 1 after five years of monitoring, which included the testing of 4,800 wild deer; CWD never was found in the wild within DMA 1.
Hunters harvesting deer within DMAs are prohibited from transporting the high-risk parts of those deer (head and backbone) outside the DMA. If those hunters live outside the DMA, and are processing the deer themselves, they must remove and properly dispose of the high-risk parts before taking other parts of the deer home.
Deer meat may be transported outside a DMA so long as the head and backbone have been removed. Antlers may also be transported from a DMA if the skull plate is free of visible brain material.
Hunters using professional meat processors to process the meat from deer they harvest within a DMA must take the deer to processors within the DMA, or otherwise included on the list of approved processors associated with that DMA. There’s also a list of approved taxidermists associated with each DMA.
The feeding of deer and the use or field possession of urine-based deer lures while hunting also are prohibited within DMAs.
MEDIA CONTACT: Travis Lau - 717-705-6541
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Pennsylvania CWD TSE Prion has been found in captive deer in Huntingdon and Lancaster counties


Pennsylvania CWD TSE Prion Cases Explodes 51 deer from the 2017-18 hunting seasons have tested positive for CWD majority of samples collected still are being analyzed


Pennsylvania Four Deer Test Positive for Chronic Wasting Disease on Franklin, Fulton County Quarantined Hunting Preserves




Pennsylvania Game Commission has scheduled a series of public meetings to ensure Pennsylvanians remain informed about chronic wasting disease CWD TSE Prion


*** Pennsylvania 27 deer from Bedford County farm test positive for chronic wasting disease ***




PENNSYLVANIA Third Case of CWD Discovered in a Captive Deer Farm in Four Months

Chronic wasting disease research becomes more crucial as cases grow in Pa. deer With fatal deer disease on the rise, Penn State researchers hunt for answers to help limit CWD's spread Jeff Mulhollem May 23, 2017 UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa, — The recent announcement by the Pennsylvania Game Commission that it found 25 more wild deer with chronic wasting disease last year underlines the importance of studies being conducted by a team of researchers in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences.

With the overarching goal of determining how the always-fatal-to-cervids disease will disburse through the state's free-ranging white-tailed deer herd, the research is aimed at informing the commission's efforts to slow or limit the spread of the disease, according to David Walter, adjunct assistant professor of wildlife ecology. 

Often referred to as CWD, chronic wasting disease infects the brain and nervous system of cervids. The illness, which belongs to a group of diseases known as transmissible spongiform encephalopathies, or prion diseases, eventually produces enough damage to the brains of affected animals to result in death. While CWD is similar to so-called mad cow disease in cattle and scrapie in sheep, there is no known relationship between them.

There is no strong evidence, either, that humans can contract CWD, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, although the disease is similar to Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, a rare, fatal syndrome that afflicts people.

Walter, who is assistant unit leader of the Pennsylvania Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit at Penn State, conducted research from 2007 to 2011 on the spread of the disease in Colorado and Nebraska in free-ranging mule deer and white-tailed deer. Since coming to Penn State in 2012, he has concentrated on the CWD outbreak spreading through deer herds in Virginia, West Virginia, Maryland and Pennsylvania.

Working under Walter's guidance in 2013-14, master's degree student Tyler Evans, now a wildlife biologist with the West Virginia Department of Natural Resources, investigated the geographic coordinates where deer testing positive for CWD were found, and he modeled the likely future spread of the disease in Pennsylvania.

Miller and a deer head Chronic wasting disease infects the brain and nervous system of cervids, and animals cannot be tested while they are alive. Here, researcher Will Miller (left) samples a deer head for the disease.

Image: Penn State "That research looked at what environmental variables were associated with the presence or absence of chronic wasting disease in the Northeast," Walter said. "We obtained the geographic coordinates of hunter-killed deer that tested positive for CWD and overlaid them on a map showing a variety of habitat and landscape features. The analysis showed a high prevalence of CWD in deer sampled from low-lying open and developed landscapes."

Now, Walter's advisee Will Miller, a doctoral degree candidate in the Intercollege Graduate Degree Program in Ecology, is continuing to study the spread of CWD in Pennsylvania. But he is focusing on whether some deer might be susceptible to the disease because of their genes, and how genetic variation in deer might influence where and how fast the disease spreads.

"It appears that deer in Pennsylvania's Northern Tier are less related to those in Maryland and in southern Pennsylvania," Walter said. "That may well have implications for how CWD spreads."

Walter and Miller are slated to travel to Edinburgh, Scotland, in late May to attend an international conference focused on prions and diseases the mysterious proteins cause. At the conference, Miller will present findings of his research focusing on genetic susceptibility of some deer in Pennsylvania to chronic wasting disease.

Detected in captive and free-ranging deer and elk in 23 states and two Canadian provinces, CWD was found last year in reindeer in Norway, Walter pointed out. "The Europeans are eager to learn what we know about the disease, based on our experience in North America," he said. "But despite all that we are learning about the disease, there is much we still don't know."

In the case of the outbreak in Pennsylvania's wild deer, that includes how the disease infected free-ranging deer in Pennsylvania. Among the possible sources, two include captive deer and wild deer moving from Maryland. Although researchers have seen evidence that deer may carry the disease over the border with Maryland, the Pennsylvania counties of Blair and Bedford, where CWD originally was found in 2012, also had the highest inventories of captive cervids in Pennsylvania.

map showing CWD outbreaks Genetics research focusing on "microsatellite markers" in white-tailed deer in Pennsylvania and surrounding states has indicated four clusters within deer herds with animal movement more likely within a cluster than between clusters.

Image: Penn State The location of the original outbreak, which was more than 40 miles from the Maryland border, makes it difficult to confirm the actual source of infection.

"In southern Fulton and Bedford counties, we have seen more CWD-positive deer along the border," Walter said. "We have seen over time that it is likely the disease is moving into this area from the West Virginia-Maryland outbreak."

The Game Commission tests both hunter-killed deer and animals killed on highways in parts of the state for CWD to assess the dimensions of the outbreak, Walter noted. The dual approach addresses sampling bias built into testing hunter harvests.

Because hunters are restricted by antler regulations from killing young male deer, and they mostly pass on taking young females and button bucks, some reached the mistaken conclusion that the disease primarily infects older deer. But road kills show that is not the case, Walter explained.

"It is a chronic disease, so it takes a while for the animal to succumb, but there is a fallacy out there that young deer can't get it — but they do, and we are detecting it now. Wisconsin has found CWD in fawns," he said.

"Most of the road kills with CWD are yearling males and females. We don't see that in hunter harvests, so our data from across the country has been skewed. Collecting and testing road kills has been a great investment of resources, and it has proved to be very valuable in finding this disease in areas we wouldn't find it otherwise."

Chronic wasting disease is not established in Pennsylvania yet, the way it is in Wisconsin and West Virginia, Walter believes, and he would like to see the Game Commission and state Department of Agriculture take steps, such as targeted culling of deer in CWD hotspots, to keep it at bay.

MEDIA CONTACTS: Jeff Muhollem Work Phone: 814-863-2719

MONDAY, MAY 15, 2017 

Pennsylvania 25 more deer test positive for CWD TSE PRION in the wild


South central Pennsylvania Captive Deer Tests Positive for Chronic Wasting Disease 


Pennsylvania Deer Tests Positive for Chronic Wasting Disease four-year-old white-tailed deer Franklin County Hunting Preserve

Wednesday, May 11, 2016 


Sunday, October 18, 2015
*** Pennsylvania Game Commission Law and Law Makers CWD TSE PRION Bans Singeltary 2002 from speaking A smelly situation UPDATED 2015
Saturday, November 07, 2015
Saturday, November 07, 2015
Pennsylvania 2015 September Minutes CWD Urine Scents
Tuesday, May 05, 2015
Pennsylvania CWD DETECTED IN SIX MORE FREE-RANGING DEER Disease Management Area 2 again expanded due to new cases Release #030-15
Sunday, July 13, 2014
Louisiana deer mystery unleashes litigation 6 does still missing from CWD index herd in Pennsylvania Great Escape
Saturday, June 29, 2013
Tuesday, June 11, 2013
*** CWD GONE WILD, More cervid escapees from more shooting pens on the loose in Pennsylvania
Tuesday, May 28, 2013
Chronic Wasting Disease CWD quarantine Louisiana via CWD index herd Pennsylvania Update May 28, 2013
*** 6 doe from Pennsylvania CWD index herd still on the loose in Louisiana, quarantine began on October 18, 2012, still ongoing, Lake Charles premises.

Sunday, January 06, 2013


*** "it‘s no longer its business.”

Wednesday, November 14, 2012
Tuesday, October 23, 2012
PA Captive deer from CWD-positive farm roaming free
Thursday, October 11, 2012
Pennsylvania Confirms First Case CWD Adams County Captive Deer Tests Positive

”The occurrence of CWD must be viewed against the contest of the locations in which it occurred. It was an incidental and unwelcome complication of the respective wildlife research programmes. Despite it’s subsequent recognition as a new disease of cervids, therefore justifying direct investigation, no specific research funding was forthcoming. The USDA veiwed it as a wildlife problem and consequently not their province!” page 26.

FRIDAY, MARCH 30, 2018 

Docket No. APHIS-2018-0011 Chronic Wasting Disease Herd Certification Program Standards Singeltary Submission March 30, 2018

Terry S. Singeltary Sr., Bacliff, Texas USA 77518 

Attachments (1) Docket No. APHIS-2018-0011 Chronic Wasting Disease Herd Certification Program Standards Singeltary View Attachment:View as format pdf

Terry S. Singeltary Sr.


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