Renown deer research facility in Texas hit by CWD – Outdoor News

Austin, Tex. — Texas Parks and Wildlife Department biologists have reported a suspect-positive case of Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) in a 14-month-old captive male white-tailed deer at the Kerr Wildlife Management Area research facility. The detection resulted from ante-mortem testing conducted on all captive white-tailed deer as part of ongoing research. Samples from the buck were sent to the National Veterinary Service Laboratory in Iowa for confirmation.

Out of an abundance of caution, TPWD staff euthanized all deer in the research facility and collected post-mortem samples, which resulted in no additional detections. TPWD will continue monitoring for CWD throughout the research facility and the WMA.


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“TPWD staff are disappointed to abruptly end nearly 50 years of white-tailed deer research that has significantly influenced deer management in Texas and across the country” said John Silovsky, Wildlife Division Director. “Staff will continue to investigate opportunities to enhance the understanding of this insidious disease in both captive environments and free-ranging populations.”

Built in 1974, the high-fenced research facility offers researchers facilities to study deer in a controlled setting. The 23-acre facility now is double high fenced and consists of breeding and rearing enclosures, and a series of other structures. The initial stock of deer in the research facility consisted of native Texas whitetails obtained from various locations.