A moose has tested positive for Chronic Wasting Disease in northwest Montana. (File photo)

Moose tests positive for Chronic Wasting Disease in northwest Montana

This is the first time the disease has been detected in the species in Montana

A moose in northwest Montana has tested positive for Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD), the first time the disease has been detected in the species in the state of Montana.

According to Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks (FWP), a hunter harvested the bull moose in late October near Pulpit Mountain west of Quartz Creek and north of Troy. The harvest occurred less than half a mile to the west of the existing Libby CWD Management Zone.

After receiving a voluntary sample, Montana FWP submitted it for testing and identified it to be suspected of CWD infection. The positive detection was confirmed with a second test.

CWD is a fatal nervous system disease that afflicts deer, moose and elk and is caused by an abnormal protein. It can spread when an infected animal comes in contact with a healthy animal through soil, food and water contamination.

CWD was first detected in Libby, Montana earlier this year, which led to the creation of the Libby CWD Management Zone.

Since then, there have been a total of 30 positive detections in deer. Five of these were deer harvested by hunters during archery and general hunting seasons. Montana FWP explained in a release on November 14 that all detections of infected deer have occurred within the Libby CWD Management Zone, and all but one has been centralized near the city centre.

In B.C., a mandatory sampling program was implemented in September, which ordered hunters to submit the heads of harvested whitetail and mule deer to be tested for CWD.

This order is in effect during the hunting season from Sept. 1- Nov. 30.

So far, according to the wildlife and habitat branch of B.C.’s Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development, there have been no confirmed cases of CWD in B.C.

Read more: Province requires disease testing for harvested deer heads

Visible symptoms of CWD include thin bodies, drooling, poor coordination and stumbling. In B.C., anyone who observes an ungulate with those symptoms is encouraged to call the provincial Wildlife Health Program at 250 751-3219 or the Report all Poachers and Polluters hotline at 1 877 952-7277.

Montana FWP explained that there is no known transmission of CWD to humans or other animals, including pets or livestock, but recommended through the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention that hunters harvesting a deer, elk, or moose from an area where CWD is known to be present have their animal tested for CWD prior to consuming the meat, and to not consume the meat if the animal tests positive.



editor@thefreepress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of Sept. 27 to Oct. 3

World Farm Animals Day, Drink Beer Day and Virus Appreciation Day are all coming up this week

Two new COVID-19 cases reported in Interior Health

The total number of Interior Health cases since the beginning of the pandemic is now at 522

SD 10 secures $3 million in funding to help build Nakusp Elementary School child care centre

The centre will provide 96 new child-care spaces in the village

West Kootenay mother searching for son missing since Sept. 1

Police are investigating the disappearance of Cory Westcott

Man whose crime spree began in Nelson pleads guilty in death of female passenger

Anthony Cortez scheduled to be sentenced for 2017 incidents

QUIZ: Do you know what’s on TV?

Fall is normally the time when new television shows are released

Canadian ski resorts wrestle with pandemic-vs.-profit dilemma as COVID-19 persists

Few are actually restricting the total number of skiers they allow on the hill

Victoria-area RCMP locate high-risk sex offender thanks to help of taxi cab driver

Scott Jones wanted on a Canada-wide warrant, ‘a risk to women and girls,’ police say

A (virtual) walk around the world by 88-year-old B.C. man

George Doi says it’s simple: ‘I like walking’

End of CERB means uncertainty for some, new system for others

As of a week ago, the CERB had paid out $79.3 billion to 8.8 million people

Horgan, Wilkinson trade barbs over MSP premiums, health care at campaign stops

Horgan called a snap election for Oct. 24 earlier this week

PHOTOS: 2nd calf in a month confirmed among Southern Resident killer whale pod

Center for Whale Research said they will eagerly await to observe the calf to evaluate its health

2 British Columbians arrested, 3 at large in massive Alberta drug bust

Eight people are facing 33 charges in what police have dubbed Project Incumbent

Most Read