Increase in Chronic Wasting Disease creates debate on deer feeding

VIDEO: Increase in Chronic Wasting Disease creates debate on deer feeding

JACKSON, MS (WLBT) - There’s a new controversy regarding an issue that’s still on the minds of many hunters this fall: chronic wasting disease.

Deer with the disease have been located in Issaquena and Pontotoc counties where there are now strict regulations.

The Mississippi Wildlife Federation has came out in opposition of The Mississippi Commission on Wildlife’s decision to remove distance requirements for hunters using feeders.

Federation representatives say they’re against it because it doesn’t allow for what they call a “traditional Mississippi hunt”, which allows a fair chase.

They also say it could aid in the spread of Chronic Wasting Disease.

(Photo source: Pixabay)
(Photo source: Pixabay)

Concentrated food sources, especially feeders, increase the chance infected deer could come in contact with other deer who aren’t infected.

“The food source -- the feeder itself -- there is contact of bodily fluids on the feeder itself and then you have deer that filter in and out of the feeding station and that’s how the spread of the disease is increased," said Lindsey Lemmons, Executive Director of the Mississippi Wildlife Federation. "The likelihood of it is highly increased.”

The state has banned the use of feeders and attractants in areas where Chronic Wasting Disease was discovered and in counties bordering a 25-mile containment zone.

Hunters now encouraged to get their deer meat tested before consuming. Statewide sampling for Chronic Wasting Disease now at an all time high.

Copyright 2018 WLBT. All rights reserved.