MADISON, Wis. – The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) and the Vilas County Deer Advisory Council will host a virtual public meeting on the status of chronic wasting disease (CWD) in wild deer in Vilas County from 6 – 9 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 9, 2022.

The department and County Deer Advisory Council members will also discuss disease surveillance options in response to the detection of CWD in Vilas County. Each county in Wisconsin has a County Deer Advisory Council that provides input and recommendations to the department on deer management within their county.

Councils work with local department staff to schedule meetings, provide community outreach and an opportunity for public input, review population data and deer impacts on forests and agriculture, develop 3-year recommendations on county population objectives and create annual antlerless harvest quotas.

The department will provide information about the results of recent local CWD testing efforts and discuss sampling goals for the coming season. The public is invited to provide remarks during the meeting’s public comment period.

In December, a three-year-old buck tested positive for chronic wasting disease in the Town of Lincoln in Vilas County. The DNR sample additional deer in the area to better understand the prevalence and distribution of the disease in Vilas County. This is the first confirmed wild positive case of CWD in Vilas County.

As required by state law, the DNR enacts three-year baiting and feeding bans in counties where CWD has been detected and two-year bans in adjoining counties that lie within 10 miles of a CWD detection.

Following state law, the DNR will renew a three-year baiting and feeding ban in Vilas County as well as a two-year ban in Forest county, as the deer was harvested within 10 miles of the county line. Oneida County is also within 10 miles of the Vilas positive’s harvest location but is already under a longer three-year baiting and feeding ban due to a positive CWD detection at a game farm earlier this year.

Learn more about the confirmed case of CWD in wild deer harvested in Vilas County here.

Chronic wasting disease is a fatal, infectious nervous system disease of deer, moose, elk and reindeer/caribou. The Wisconsin DNR began monitoring the state’s wild white-tailed deer population for chronic wasting disease in 1999. The first positives were found in 2002.

More information on CWD in Wisconsin is available on the DNR webpage here.

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