Fish, Wildlife, And Parks Steps Up Efforts To Detect Cases Of Ch - KFBB.com News, Sports and Weather

Fish, Wildlife, And Parks Steps Up Efforts To Detect Cases Of Chronic Wasting Disease

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GREAT FALLS -

Hunting season doesn't begin until the fall, but Montana Fish, Wildlife, and Parks is getting ready now. FWP is stepping up its efforts to catch any cases of chronic wasting disease, also known as CWD. CWD affects deer, elk, and moose populations, caused by an incorrect protein in their cells, which then leads to the animal dying. Now although the last known case of the disease in Montana was in 1998, several bordering states and provinces have had animals test positive. Experts believe it's only a matter of time before it is found here in the treasure state. But the issue with CWD is even if an animal is infected, it doesn't have any specific symptoms. This means hunters are completely unaware. "You wouldn't know whether or not an animal was infected with chronic wasting disease.” Emily Almberg with Fish, Wildlife, and Parks says. “The symptoms are sort of vague and generalized. And so a hunter who harvests an animal, even if it's a healthy animal, if they wanted it tested, they'd have to submit a sample to an approved lab and have it diagnosed as being detected or not detected." Almberg says if you suspect the animal you've killed may have CWD, don't eat it and contact the regional wildlife office as soon as possible.     

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