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DNR & MSU to track deer in hopes of learning more about chronic wasting disease

Feb 4, 2018

Credit steve carmody / Michigan Radio

Michigan wildlife officials are launching a five-year study to see if deer movement is spreading a serious disease.

Since 2015, 58 cases of Chronic Wasting Disease have been identified in the state.  CWD attacks the brain of infected animals, resulting in death.  The outbreak started near Lansing, but has spread to other areas.

MSU professor David Williams is fitting deer with collars to see if their movements are increasing their contact with infected herds.

“Another area we’re really interested in is how the landscape may be shaping if the deer move and potentially the disease moves,” says Williams.

Williams says the study will also share real time data with wildlife officials trying to prevent the further spread of the deadly deer disease.

CWD does not pose a risk to human health.