AUSTIN – Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) has been discovered in deer breeding facilities in both Hunt and Uvalde counties. This marks the first positive detection of the disease in Hunt County.
The tissue samples were submitted by the deer breeding facilities as part of required CWD surveillance programs. The samples indicated the presence of CWD during testing at the Texas A&M Veterinary Medical Diagnostic Laboratory (TVMDL) in College Station on March 23 for the Uvalde County facility. Samples indicated the presence of CWD during testing at the TVMDL on March 24 for the Hunt County facility. The National Veterinary Services Laboratory in Ames, Iowa, has since confirmed CWD in those tissue samples, but the samples reported for Hunt County are undergoing DNA testing to confirm animal identification and origin.
Officials have taken immediate action to secure all deer at the Uvalde County and Hunt County deer breeding facilities and plan to conduct additional investigations for CWD. In addition, other breeding facilities that received deer from these facilities or shipped deer to these facilities during the last five years are under movement restrictions and cannot move or release deer at this time.
Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) and Texas Animal Health Commission (TAHC) are working together to determine the extent of the disease within the facilities and evaluate risks to Texas’ free ranging deer populations. Quick detection of CWD can help mitigate the disease’s spread.
“Recent CWD discoveries in new locations across the state are deeply concerning and underscore the criticality of redoubling efforts to help arrest the spread of this disease,” said Carter Smith, Executive Director of TPWD. “While it is important to realize that CWD is still not widespread in Texas, complacency is not an option. The only way to ensure we are effective in combating the further