ST. PAUL — The ongoing chronic wasting disease investigation of farms tied to the Douglas County detection first reported in December has led to a CWD-confirmed doe on a Pine County farm, the Minnesota Board of Animal Health said Friday, Jan. 10.
The herd in Pine County was being investigated because it provided animals to the Douglas County herd in the past, including the CWD positive doe that initiated the disease investigation, a release said.
“We identified the Pine County herd as high priority early in our investigation because our records showed it provided deer to the Douglas County herd,” said Dr. Linda Glaser, board assistant director. “At this point in the investigation CWD has not been detected in any of the other herds connected to Douglas County.”
The Douglas County herd is completely depopulated, and the site is not allowed to have any deer or elk for five years. The owner must also maintain fencing to prevent wild deer from accessing the empty pen and post biohazard signs on the fencing for the entire five-year period, the release said.
The Pine County herd owner must also depopulate and test all remaining deer on the farm and maintain fencing with biohazard signage for five years. The investigation is continuing beyond this herd to discover additional movements of deer between it and other locations in the past. Any additional farms identified will be quarantined and their movement records will be reviewed.
CWD is a disease of the deer and elk family caused by prions, which can damage brain and nerve tissue. The disease is most likely transmitted when infected deer and elk shed prions in saliva, feces, urine, and other fluids or tissues. CWD is not known to naturally occur in other animals. The disease is fatal in deer and elk, and there are no known treatments or vaccines.