More diseased deer found in north Louisiana

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries confirmed last week that five additional suspected cases of Chronic Wasting Disease were discovered in deer in Tensas Parish. 

According to LDWF, two bucks and three does were harvested on private land, raising the number of CWD-positive cases reported in Tensas Parish to seven since 2022.

Chronic Wasting Disease is a neurodegenerative disease found in most deer species, including white-tailed deer, mule deer, elk, moose, and caribou. It is infectious, always fatal, and has no known treatment. It is part of a group of diseases known as transmissible spongiform encephalopathies and is similar to mad cow disease in cattle. These diseases cause irreversible damage to brain tissue, which leads to salivation, neurological symptoms, emaciation, and death of the animal.

Although CWD has not been shown to be contagious to humans, officials recommend humans not consume CWD-positive deer. Officials also recommend hunters in areas known to harbor CWD to have their deer tested. 

To date, the only cases of infected deer have been found in Tensas Parish. The first CWD-positive deer in Tensas was reported in January 2022. The Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission has adopted regulations for a CWD control area in northeast Louisiana to include all of Tensas Parish and portions of Madison and Franklin Parishes. Regulations include prohibition of deer feeders and restrictions on moving certain parts of the deer carcass.

More information on CWD is available at https://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/page/cwd


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