Infected Douglas County deer traced to Pine County farm
ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Investigators have traced a deer on a Douglas County farm that was infected with chronic wasting disease to a farm in Pine County that supplied the animal, the Minnesota Board of Animal Health said Friday.
A doe on the Pine County farm that tested positive has been put down and the eight other deer still alive there will be destroyed, board spokesman Michael Crusan said. The herd owner is working with the U.S. Department of Agriculture on compensation.
Both deer that were living on the Douglas County farm were killed earlier to stop the spread of the fatal brain disease. Both farms must fence off their deer pens to keep wild deer out and keep biohazard signs posted around them for five years.
The board is still investigating whether other deer from the Pine County farm have been transferred to other farms. In response to the Douglas County discovery, the state last month temporarily banned the movement of all farmed white-tailed deer within Minnesota.
Chronic wasting disease is caused by a prion, an abnormal protein that can persist in the environment for years. It’s not known to infect humans, but it’s fatal to deer and elk, and authorities advise against eating infected meat.