Second case of Chronic Wasting Disease found in deer in Issaquena Co.

Gun season for deer hunting begins Saturday, and wildlife officials are asking hunters to get their harvests tested.

Second case of Chronic Wasting Disease found in deer in Issaquena Co.

Gun season for deer hunting begins Saturday, and wildlife officials are asking hunters to get their harvest tested.

“Thankfully it turned broadside, and I get a good shot on him,” said Levi Carter. “I think I’m gonna make me some sausage out of him."

The teenager is excited about bagging his first buck this past weekend on Davis Island in Warren County.

But farther north in Issaqueena County, Mississippi Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks discovered a second case of Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) in a deer in early November.

The agency has established two CWD zones in the state—Issaqueena and Ponotoc counties—where deer with the fatal disease have been located.

MDWFP requests hunters submit deer harvest samples. Source: WLBT
MDWFP requests hunters submit deer harvest samples. Source: WLBT

“Inside of those zones there are certain regulations,” said MDWFP biologist Russ Walsh. “There’s no supplemental feeding. Certain portions of deer carcasses may not be transported out of that zone, as well as mineral licks. There can be no new mineral licks or anything added to existing mineral licks."

The first case of CWD was detected in Issaqueena County in February, between Highway 465, Highway 61 and Eagle Lake.

The second positive animal was found six miles north.

Experts say the disease is similar to mad cow disease, but there are no known cases of humans contracting the disease by eating infected meat or coming in contact with infected deer.

“We’re requesting that hunters submit samples for testing,” said the wildlife expert. “So there will be check stations where our staff will be, as well as their freezers all across the state for people to take deer heads to and deposit them for testing.”

Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks will have 21 freezers and four check stations statewide during the deer hunting season.

Deer can be infected from 16 to 24 months. Clinical signs begin with rapid weight loss, excessive salivating and loss of neurological motion or staggering.

Hunters are asked to participate in statewide sampling.

“They are our eyes on the landscape," added Walsh. “They can help us in this endeavor,.”

Click on this link to find the Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks check stations and freezer locations.

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