U.S. Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer and U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, member of the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry, this week announced $180,366 in federal funding for the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation to protect New York’s wildlife and deer population from the serious threat of Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD).
CWD is an infectious, degenerative prion disease that affects deer, elk, reindeer, sika deer and moose. It has been found in some areas of North America, including Canada and the United States, Norway and South Korea. It may take over a year before an infected animal develops symptoms, which can include drastic weight loss (wasting), stumbling, listlessness and other neurologic symptoms.
CWD was detected in New York State in 2005, but no new cases have been detected since.
This funding was allocated through the United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) and will be used to create a researched based digital media campaign to control and reduce the risks of this disease.
According to the CDC, while there have been no reported cases of CWD infection in people to date, some animal studies suggest CWD is transmissible to non-human primates which raises the importance of keeping all known prion diseases from entering the human food chain.
Learn about CWD Surveillance in New York.