Testing of more than 2,500 samples of deer statewide found no deer infected with Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD), the state Department of Environmental Conservation announced last week.
CWD continues to pose a threat to New York’s wild white-tailed deer as Pennsylvania discovered CWD in both captive white-tailed deer and wild, free-ranging white-tailed deer in 2012.
Since 2002, DEC annually has tested hunter-harvested white-tailed deer for CWD. The last confirmed case of CWD in New York was in 2005.
Public reporting of sick and abnormal deer throughout the year is also important because these animals are collected and tested for CWD.
DEC’s Wildlife Health Unit conducts full necropsies (animal autopsy) to determine the source of illness or cause of death on many species, including deer.
In 2012, DEC revised the state CWD surveillance program to include information on population density, deer age and sex, and risk factors, including border counties with Pennsylvania. The goal was to collect samples from the highest risk areas. For further details on the initiation and timeline of DEC’s CWD surveillance program, visit http://www.dec.ny.gov/animals/33220.html.