GREAT FALLS — Another white-tailed deer in the Libby area is suspected to be positive for chronic wasting disease (CWD).
Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks said in a news release on Monday that it collected a sample from the adult doe that was found dead on residential property on the west side of town.
The Veterinary Diagnostic Lab at Colorado State University in Fort Collins, Colorado, tested the sample and identified it to be suspected of CWD infection and will run a second test for confirmation.
If confirmed, it would mark the 10th detection of CWD out of 144 samples collected and submitted for testing from the Libby area so far this year. The positive detections have all involved white-tailed deer.
CWD is a progressive, fatal disease affecting the nervous system of mule deer, white-tailed deer, elk, and moose. There is no known transmission of CWD to humans or other animals, including pets or livestock.
If hunters are interested in having their harvested deer, elk or moose tested for CWD, this fall FWP will pay for sampling for hunters who collect their own samples and send them to the FWP lab in Bozeman.
Prior to the general season, hunters can collect samples themselves and mail them to the FWP Lab — instructions and a video are available on the FWP website. Starting with the general season, hunters can still submit samples themselves or take the samples or a deer/elk/moose head to regional offices for assistance. For more information, visit fwp.mt.gov/cwd.
Hunters are encouraged to check with their preferred game processer to check on any CWD-related requirements that could be in effect.
In response to the CWD detections, FWP has established the Libby CWD Management Zone, which encompasses roughly 10 miles around the detection sites. All deer, elk and moose harvested within the Libby CWD Management Zone must be checked and sampled within 3 days of harvest. Hunters who quarter or bone out their animal in the field must bring the head for sampling.