From News Report
March 6, 2018 – A ban on supplemental deer feeding in East Carroll, Madison and Tensas parishes is now in effect in an effort to potentially curb the spread of chronic wasting disease (CWD), recently discovered in Issaquena County, Mississippi, about five miles from the Louisiana border.
The Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission (LWFC) approved a Declaration of Emergency to cease supplemental deer feeding in those parishes at its March meeting Thursday (March 1). It became effective Monday (March 5). To read the entire Declaration of Emergency go to http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/action-items .
The action comes after the discovery of a buck that tested positive for CWD in Mississippi on Jan. 25. Issaquena County borders northeast Louisiana.
The action is part of the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) CWD Response Plan, designed to monitor and curb the potential spread of CWD into Louisiana.
According to the declaration, the use of bait not normally ingested by deer for feral hog trapping will still be allowed. All bait must be placed and contained within the trap itself. Backyard bird feeders are also exempt from the declaration.
Baits that are permitted include commercially sold baits formulated and labeled for feral hog trapping, commercial fish based baits and soured grains, including whole shell corn soaked in water and fermented. Rice bran, non-fermented or whole cracked corn, soybeans, protein pellets and commercial feeds formulated for deer are prohibited from use in feral hog traps during the ban.
CWD is a neurodegenerative disease found in most deer species, including moose, elk, mule deer and white-tailed deer. It is infectious and always fatal. It is part of a group of diseases known as transmissible spongiform encephalopathies (TSEs) and is similar to BSE (Bovine spongiform encephalopathy or mad cow disease) of cattle and scrapie in sheep. These diseases cause irreversible damage to brain tissue that leads to salivation, neurological symptoms, emaciation and death of the animal.
Deer infected with CWD can spread the disease even before symptoms develop. It can take one to two years for infected animals to become symptomatic. When symptoms appear, they can include emaciation, lethargy, abnormal behavior and loss of bodily functions. Other signs include excessive salivation, loss of appetite, progressive weight loss, excessive thirst and urination, teeth grinding and drooping ears.
LDWF has tested more than 8,300 deer since 2002 and has not detected CWD. For more information, go to http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/hunting/CWD .