The Game and Fish Department assembled Wyoming’s finest in order to come with a way of helping the afflicted deer population. Once more, Wyoming’s GFD comes to the aid of sickened deer an event has a new plan capable of wiping out the disease.
As of Monday, the wildlife authorities will issue new guidelines regarding disease control and management. Additional herds will be brought in for further examinations. Moreover, the western enclosure will be carefully monitored to see if the herds came down with the disease.
The affliction that struck the deer population from Wyoming is called chronic wasting disease. CWD is can be transmitted among members from the same herd. The disease is caused by a prion (an infectious agent, made entirely out of proteins). Once it enters the bloodstream, the prion is capable of inducing a cascading condition known as spongiform encephalopathies. As the disease takes wings, both physical and mental changes are occurring. In the last stages of the disease, several tiny holes appear in the cortex, transforming it into a spongious mass.
The disease is known to be affecting the white-tailed deer, the elk, the mule deer and the moose. Unfortunately, the disease is highly contagious and it is always fatal. According to wild authorities, the best way to diagnose this disease is to look for signs in the deer’s behavior.
Among the most common behavioral signs consistent with a prion infection are: sickened animals tend to isolate themselves from the pack, avoiding contact with other members. Moreover, there are a couple of more signs which might indicate that the animal is coming down with CWD. Other signs might include apathy, fatigue, walking in circles and a distinct smell that resemble a rotting cadaver.
The representatives also observed that infected animal tend to eat a lot of grain, decreasing their hay intake. Furthermore, the deer will tend to salivate a lot, grind their teeth.
Unfortunately, in terms of diagnosis, the authorities are still working on a way to diagnose the disease before it’s too late to act. Up until now, the diagnosis was established after the animal died.
In terms of food consumption, health authorities have cautioned hunters and game gourmets to be very careful around infested meat. After sacrificing the animal, the hunter should take some meat sample to a vet, in order to have it analyzed. In the past, there were quite a lot of cases when prions jumped from deer to human, via infected meat.