Thought this might interest some of you.
EPIZOOTIC HEMORRHAGIC DISEASE, DEER - USA (MISSOURI)
A ProMED-mail post
Date: Mon, 21 Sep 1998 22:55:12 -0400
From: "Angela M. Lee"
Source: Tribune Online News Story by Rudi
Keller, 13 Sep 1998, edited
Epizootic haemorrhagic disease (EHD) has broken out amoung the
white-tailed deer population of northern and Central Missouri and, if
past outbreaks are any guide, some areas could lose substantial
numbers of the state's premier big-game animal. As of yesterday,
Missouri Department of Conservation officials had recorded reports of
hemorrhagic disease among deer in 12 counties. The disease killed more
than 50 captive deer at the Heartland Wildlife Ranch northwest of New
Cambria, said Tom Skinner, conservation agent for Macon County.
The reported number of dead wild deer is much smaller, Skinner said.
The numbers should begin climbing as archery hunters start staking out
spots for the hunting season that begins Oct. 1, he said. "We'll get
our big reports starting next weekend, as the hunters go looking for
sign and see those dead deer in the woods," Skinner said. Most of his
reports of dead deer have come from farmers who find the animals in
fields as they are harvesting crops or mowing hay. "This thing just
started, and being it is hot and dry I expect to hear more about it
soon," he said.
Hunters who are worried they've killed what was an unhealthy deer
should tag the deer and check it, then obtain another tag for free
from the conservation department. [No comment - MHJ]
The last major outbreak of hemorrhagic disease in Missouri killed
about 10 000 deer in south-central sections of the state in 1988. This
year's outbreak has been reported in Howard, Randolph, Callaway,
Macon, Chariton, Grundy, Mercer, Daviess, Camden, Miller and Carter
counties. Despite reports from all around the area, no infected deer
have been reported in Boone County.
The disease is caused by an orbivirus transmitted from deer to deer by
midge flies. Major outbreaks in Missouri usually occur when hot, dry
weather causes animals to congregate near water supplies.
Missouri is home to an estimated 850 000 white-tailed deer, and
hunters killed a record 219 000 deer during the 1997 hunting season.
If this year's outbreak becomes as bad as the 1988 round of the
disease, the number of deaths would rival the annual count of deer
killed in collisions with vehicles. Missouri motorists reported 8110
collisions with deer during 1997, said Bill Heatherly of the
conservation agency's wildlife division. - --- Angela Lee ProMED-mail
[In Louisiana we get outbreaks of EHD in deer each June.
Interestingly, the closely related Blue Tongue virus, also spread by
midges, does not cause disease here until mid-September, though cattle
will commonly show a fleeting BT seropositivity in June during the EHD
season - Mod.MHJ]
Michele Gale-Sinex, communications manager
Center for Integrated Ag Systems
UW-Madison College of Ag and Life Sciences
Voice: (608) 262-8018 FAX: (608) 265-3020
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